The fashion world is full of unique personalities. But none come as unexpected as Mr Pearl, who loves to throw rules out the window and make fabrics do things they were never meant to do, including corsets.
Corsets In The Fashion Industry
John Galliano, Chloe, Alexander McQueen, Antonio Berardi and Christian Lacroix were fashion designers who marketed corsets. But who produced these creations for these brands?
In 2001 there was one man who was responsible for tying Sophie Dahl into her ballet shoe pink corset dress at the Jean Paul Gaultier’s spring/summer collection. This same man also laced posh spice into her wasp-waisted Vera wang wedding dress.
Welcome to the man who wears and make works of art in the world of corsets. His name is Mr Pearl.
Who Is Mr Pearl?
Mr Pearl is one of the worlds most talented, appreciated and successful modern corset designers. Mr Pearl, or alter ego of Mark Pullin as his real name is, was born 43 years ago in South Africa. Ever since childhood Pullin has been enchanted by ballet, (he’s an old ballet dancer) and a lover of corset making and art.
Which Celebrity Wore Mr Pearls Corsets?
It comes to no surprise celebrities as Kylie Minogue, Jerry Hall, Sophie Dahl, Victoria Beckham, and Kim Kardashian have worked with Mr Pearl.
He is all about haute couture using nothing but his hands and opulent inventions to create corsets. It is for this reason he creates his corsets in Paris.
He had a long term relationship with Dita Von Teese who wore his corsets he made. His corsets take a long time to make and for this reason, his commitment to the world of arts is why so many famous celebrities have worked with him.
Some Highlights of Mr Pearl Career
The infamous Mr Pearl attended the 1989 Met Gala Love Ball in New York City as a human bustle to Bowery’s costume. At this event, Mr Pearl met designer Thierry Mugler. Together they had a love for fashion and they relocated to Paris, France which resulted in many famous collaborations.
Mr Pearl the maker of corsets only designed one corset for McQueen, purple silk and black lace corset worn by Honor Fraser in the designer’s Autumn-Winter 1996 show. This piece was subsequently exhibited in the McQueen retrospective, Savage Beauty at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
In 1997, Isabella Blow included a Mr Pearl corset as part of the group of garments she chose to represent fashions of 1997 in the Fashion Museum, Bath’s Dress of the Year collection.
Why Did Mr Pearl Start Corset Design?
But exactly when, how and where did this huge fascination for corsets begin?
“My grandmother wore corsets so I became fascinated by them,” he says. “They were always salmon-pink. She used to let me lace her up. It took a long time as there were lots of eyelets and laces, but it was a great treat.”
In 1994, Pullin moved to London Covent Garden and in 2002 Mr Pearl headed to France Paris, where his corset-art formed.
How Does A Man End Up With A Waist Like This?
To achieve a figure such as Mr Pearl’s, a corset must be worn all the time, every single day and night. It wasn’t like one day he woke up and put on an 18″inch waist corset, that reduced his normal waist measurement 12″! Severe waist reduction like this, as a rule, takes years.
The person doing it must have a series of incrementally smaller corsets, which must be custom made in order to fit correctly, and strong enough to withstand the strain. They must also possess a great deal of self-discipline, to wear a corset every day, despite negative social pressures. A corsetier is a lifestyle choice, it is a kind of expression of elegance.
What Is The Feeling Of Wearing a Corset?
Mr Pearl, how would you describe the feeling of wearing a corset to someone who has never had the opportunity to put one on?
“Permanent embrace” just about sums it up. There are also ways to behave when wearing a corset. Clients often have ideas or fantasies about this before the commissioning stage and later there is much to explore vis a vis heightened social interaction.
Mr Pearl, what fascinates you so much about the way they repress and transform the body?
The body becomes voluptuous and palpably “there” rather than repressed.” Me wearing a corset is a symbol of female oppression as a man.
Corset fashion has been revolutionised and is going to explode as time goes by. As a costume designer, it is why my claim to corset fame has made me a very niche in the world of a working-class family. Up until now, the corset is absent from most women’s everyday wardrobe. Many people enjoy the nostalgic or sensual connotations of a corset.
Dita Von Teese with Mr Pearl
There are many famous faces who have been seen in a Mr Pearl corset, among them is Dita Von Teese a famous tour showgirl. When you ask Dita about Mr Pearl, this is her answer;
“I feel very fortunate to know this man who lives for glamour and keeps this lost art of corsetry as it once was alive and well. In this era when everyone wants everything quickly and cheaply, Mr Pearl is here for those of us that comprehend the true art of haute couture, understand the value of it and are patient enough to take the time to let it happen.”
Mr Pearl is an extreme case of commitment to corset fashion but one we certainly can at least learn by and adapt our own approach to when wearing a corset.
By wearing a corset as a man Mr Pearl has a history of controversy in the world of fashion. He is an amazing corsetier who loves to steal the glory in the world of corsets.
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