Let’s start at the bottom. Those platforms represented 6 inches of lift and came in silver paneled black calfskin or spangled with star paillettes. They were giddy and Ziggy and got the audience giggly. Dean and Dan Caten said backstage that the footwear had defined their casting for this show. “We really have to hand it to them. The first thing we did at the casting was to make them try the shoes. And if they could walk in them, then we dressed them, then they got the show.”
With the rare exception of one or two guys who gingerly relied on glutes over core to maintain mastery of the floor, most of these models managed their Bowie-boots with great grace. Above them they wore a highly worked montage of masculine youth tribes drawn from the Catens’ country of residence, Great Britain, which were made capital-F Fabulous by those boots and their lavishness of fabrication. So we had skinhead/suedehead tank tops and bleach-splattered tight denim heaped with jewelry. The mod favorite fishtail parka came in a paillette-rendered camouflage, as did combats and bombers. Under porkpie hats the checkerboard motif of 2 Tone ska was played out in lush satin. A string vest spattered with Swarovski was bitchily butch. A jacquard of daisies in pink dotted silver Lurex was military-subversive.
“This is also a celebration of our homosexuality,” said the designers. At the finale they wore those platforms, thigh high, to take their bow—“we have to because we are already dwarves and those boys are towering over us”—and garlanded themselves in rainbow ribbons as an expression of solidarity for violated Orlando.