If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen I recently posted about my badge collection. I've always been a badge collector; as a child I collected them at every house, garden or event we visited and I've continued in that vein ever since. As a teenager I bought a collection of badges at a car boot sale for a fiver, within the box resided a complete history of every event, campaign and place the person had visited over a lifetime. Since then I've amassed hundreds more from exhibitions and car boots and a few choice ones from Ebay.
Recently I've been thinking about why I find badges so fascinating. I think what I love about them most is their ability to get across a very short, snappy message in just a few words or a carefully designed image. They can instantly align you with a movement or political party. They can help you make friends or enemies in seconds. I also love how they track both a personal and cultural history. I have so many that have messages that are completely lost in time; long lost campaigns to get children to pick up litter or say NO to strangers or my personal favourite 'WIMPEY WELCOME HOME'.
Anyway, in possibly the most important election week ever I thought what better time to don every single badge I own. I've been feeling the need to shout out recently. A number of frustrating things have been happening but I've realised more than ever before that my mum's favourite phrase 'don't get sad get mad' is true (see below for the Bash Street Kid's version- Don't get even, Get MAD!).
The outfit is mainly inspired by a number of groups; mainly subcultures- punks, casuals, skinheads they all used badges to get their message across (whether political or otherwise):
and protest groups and marches:
|Source: 3 (watch Pride if you haven't already, a fab film about LGSM)|
|Source: 4 (walked past a CND shop in Exeter on Friday, amazed to see it was still in full force)|
|Also pearly kings and queens, for their abundant use of buttons to cover every possible space:|
|Votes for Women, tin badge, designed by Sylvia Pankhurst, 1909-1910|
|Nuclear Power No Thanks, designed by Ann Lund & Soren Lisburg, C.1980|
|I didn't Vote Tory, c.1979|
The t-shirt I got at a kilo sale several years ago, it's my absolute favourite. The pattern is a rip of Collier Campbell's Bauhaus print (which they reproduced in several colour ways for Liberty) which in turn ripped off Gunta Stolzl's original tapestry
|Collier Campbell's Bauhaus print, in original colour way, designed for Liberty, Source: V&A|
|Slit Tapestry Red/Green, 1927/8, Gunta Stolzl - Source: 6|
I hope you'll be voting on Thursday. It really is of the upmost importance that you do, even if you feel compelled to spoil your ballot. I will be, I spent a long time umming about who I'd be voting for. Cornwall has been Lib Dem for longer than I've been in existence but thankfully due to their series of seriously big blunders I think it could change. My vote is on Green, they are the only party I have any hope in. I don't agree with everything they are proposing but over half will have to do. I'm feeling the need for radical change; if the Tories get in I've already made a pact to leave the country. It might seem drastic but I just don't think I can take another four years with hamface cam.
In other news I made this last night:
|Getting What We Need (30 things an artist needs to survive)|
You can't make it out too well, due to the terrible phone quality but it's: A woolly jumper, strength, patience, a diary, an espresso pot, a hot water bottle, blue tac, materials, a phone, R.E.S.P.E.C.T, water, space, gaffer tape, a brain, sleep, soap, ideas, string, shoes, time, love, food, a sense of humour, light, talent (?), energy, resistance, a roof over our head, a radio (tuned to 92.1 fm), money & bubble wrap (congrats to the first person who points out that there are 31 things...)
I hope you're all having excellent weekends. As you can tell I've been feeling frustrated it's changing though, and I always think you have to get a bit mad to incite change in your life. I'm planning a couple of trips away, I'm feeling a ardent need to escape and taste life elsewhere for a while.
Levi 501s - Charity shop
Fcuk 1990s denim jacket - Car boot sale ( I have another of these that belonged to my mum in the 90s, probably the most worn item in my wardrobe as it's now in shreds)
1970s rip off Collier Campbell Bauhaus print t-shirt - Vintage Kilo Sale
Seasalt neckerchief - Seasalt sale shop
Vintage badges - car boot sales/ ebay