Can we please send the Kardashians some big panties and a slanket? – The Irish Times
I have attended many weddings where my day was ruined by the bride’s decision to go strapless. All it takes is one incident where she rears up and lifts him onto the crest of her chest and I’m screwed, worrying about his discomfort. Wouldn’t she have put on a strap? Why would she choose something that requires constant adjustment? Did she really give three thousand dollars to Melanie in Belles et Brides to be tortured by a corset?
I feel the same when I watch The Kardashians on TV. The number one family of reality royalty are well into their 21st season on TV with a new look and a new name – they ditched ‘Keeping up with’ and now they’re just ‘The Kardashians’. Kim Kardashian, the show’s kingpin, was recently quoted as saying she would wear a diaper if it meant reaching the top of fashion. She appeared in a succession of outfits that clearly didn’t have built-in pee flaps. She showed up to the Balenciaga fashion show wrapped from neck to big toe in tough duct tape and one can only assume she had slipped into a tight little Tena Lady before getting ‘dressed’.
Kim’s style has evolved tremendously with her family’s wealth, environment and appearances since Keeping up with the Kardashians first aired in 2007. We’ve seen Kim, her mother Kris and her sisters Kourtney, Khloe, Kendall and Kylie move in their Stripper Pole in the age of the bedroom in the period of giant salads that eat constantly. Their homes grew bigger and more barren, faces and bodies changed, and the only thing left were the giant jars of cookies that sat sadly uneaten in the kitchen.
Fashion choices have often been torturous and bizarre. Kim’s style was heavily influenced by her ex-husband Kanye West during their marriage and her sisters and mother were all in love with West to some extent. It always struck me how uncomfortable they all look. Always cinched and pinched and struggling with a demented cleavage or an absurd shoe, leaping along a precipice of cheers and ridicule.
Kim was hit in the sky when she attended the 2012 Met Gala – New York’s infamous fashion event – in a fitted floral dress despite being heavily pregnant with her first child. I remember thinking the dress had a bit of stretch and looked quite comfortable, but the couch comparisons were unforgiving and she says she cried all the way home afterwards. Since then, her Met outfits have included a crippling uncomfortable-looking dress designed to look soaking wet and a black body stocking that covered everything, including her face. I half-expected her to extend her hands to reveal eyes where her palms should be, Pan’s Labyrinth style.
As a writer with the responsibility of promoting my work, the public aspect of my work is the most difficult.
She is determined to push the boundaries of fashion, no matter how comfortable. For the 2022 Met, she controversially wore the dress Marilyn Monroe wore to sing Happy Birthday to JFK, and went on an irresponsible diet to not quite fit in. It didn’t close at night and she had to cover her buttocks with a fur stole. That’s no way to survive a red carpet!
Even when the Kardashians are filming at home and dressed relatively casually, they exude awkwardness. They’re constantly straightening their hair, rearranging their bodies, and holding their faces like people do when they’re wearing a lot of makeup, like their cheeks might crack. If they’re wearing $10,000 tracksuits, you know there’s shapewear underneath.
Kim is actually the owner of Skims, a hugely successful shapewear company, which is said to be very comfortable. Kim often opts instead for full bodysuits with the boots already attached, for some reason reminiscent of horse hooves. I feel panic rising when I see her in the accoutrements. The only sister who manages a convincing air of comfort is Kendall, a literal model who looks heavenly in a pair of leggings and a sweatshirt (although I’ve seen pictures of her in her underwear and bathing suits which concern me for its pH balance).
Middle child Khloe Kardashian has been on TV since her early 20s and her struggle with body image is sadly well documented. Her appearance has changed drastically over the years and she faces constant criticism. I feel like brushing her hair up into a bun and giving her a huge pair of panties and a slanket to watch her own show on the couch in some sort of cruel vicious circle.
As a writer with the responsibility of promoting my work, the public aspect of my work is the most difficult. I hate to be seen, evaluated, discussed and even when what comes back to me is overwhelmingly positive, I let my mind settle on the negative hits I create for myself. Being under constant surveillance must be absolute hell.
I’m part of the problem, of course. I’ve seen every episode and in a tense hostage situation with a gun to my head, I could easily name every grandchild in the Kardashian Cinematic Universe. As long as they keep making them – the kids and the episodes – I’ll keep watching them, all the time worrying about the heat inside Kim’s comically huge puffer jackets which, to be fair, I’d take over of a strapless bride any day.