Pet Play in 1920 Paris.September 28, 2019
Many in pet play and pup play communities assume its a modern invention, but this is not the case in any way. While fetishwear was commercially available in Victorian Europe in the 1800’s This photo was taken in Paris sometime in the 1920’s making it one of, if not the oldest photos of pet play fetish wear. But there is so much more story behind the photo.
BDSM in the 1920’s
At the time there were only a small number of companies that were actually making the clothing that catered to the robust bondage loving, whip and chains-wearing fans that enjoying living out their fantasies in the clubs of Paris and in the privacy of their own home. If people were getting their freak on in an iron bra and matching chastity belt it probably came from France. Two of the pioneering companies that were feeding the fetish community with their playthings were Yva Richard and Diana Slip.
Yva Richard was the husband and wife duo of L. Richard and Nativa Richard. Getting their start sometime in the early 1920s, Nativia was not only the talented seamstress making Yva Richard’s signature risque lingerie, but she also modelled much of the companies cheeky creations and would routinely appeared in Yva Richard’s popular mail-order catalogue from which the kinky couple sold everything from masks to iron restraints. The Richards’ biggest competition back in the 20s was Diana Slip—a fetish wear company run by Léon Vidal. Vidal’s collection while very much marketed to purveyors of kink had a slightly more sophisticated air and was not as overtly deviant as Yva Richard’s designs.
The arrival of WWII and the subsequent occupation of France in the early 40’s pretty much put the kibosh on the booming fetish business and both companies as well as others closed up shop until the sexual revolutions in the 60’s.
If this kind of thing you would like to learn more. The French book Yva Richard: L’âge d’or du fétichisme features a large collection of photographs that chronicle the history of the French fetish wear pioneers.