Bastet Noir
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Bastet Noir

BEHIND THE SCENES: The inspiration behind the designs

The Wild Wild West Collection, made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

There’s something so alluring about the Wild West that kind of captures everyone’s attention, transcending eras and translating centuries later into a style that somehow always finds its way back. Perhaps the very thing that keeps it in the spotlight for so long is the nostalgia of times gone by, known for the debauchery, the rebellion that came with it and the illusion of freedom that it carried. The appeal that a cowboy radiates of its carefully crafted image of danger, excitement, fearlessness and adventure is what actually draws you in. Or maybe, the reason why it’s so relevant in pop culture today is the fact that this period marks the moment in time when Americans got their identity through crafting values focused on equality, democracy, and optimism, as well as individualism, and self-reliance. It’s a period in time when gunslinging cowboys and lawmen represented freedom and tough justice. Perhaps, this is why centuries later, the allure of the Wild West is still something that inspires pop culture tremendously. I mean, you can’t walk on the street and not find a reference to it in one way or another.

Haunted by the idea of that edgy image of the ultimate bad boy of the time, our idea was to translate it into modern times. Our intention was to shine a light on the women who who relentlessly stood up for themselves in times when social norms didn’t allow them to be nothing more than a housewife. Born during a time when women stood in the shadows of their rugged men, these trailblazers proved that they were as good — if not better — than their male counterparts. Some of them became legends as outlaws, shocking society with their ruthless and unladylike behavior. The tough-as-nails demeanor, as well as empathy and compassion that each one of them possessed laid the way for generations of cowgirls to emulate. As we’re all about celebrating the unusual and the shocking, these women became the leading inspiration behind the Wild West Collection.

THE JOSEPHINE SET

Josephine Brawley Huges was the first female public school teacher in the territory of Tucson who opened the first school for girls. Together with her husband she was the only woman back in those days who ran a newspaper that opposed gambling and capital punishment and pushed for temperance. Because of her, when elected as senator her son John introduced a resolution for a constitutional amendment giving women the vote. The initiative was approved by voters in November 1912.

The Josephine 3 Piece Set made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The 3 piece wool set features a double breasted vest, pants and a single breasted trench coat. Embellished with caramel button details, the set is the ultimate power suit every girl needs in her wardrobe.

THE ANNIE TRENCH COAT

Annie Oakley’s story started when she was very young. She was forced to learn how to hunt so she could provide for her family. That kind of burden and responsibility has made her the best sharpshooter, winning competitions left and right regardless of her gender. But the thing that made her really impressive was not her shooting skills, even though they were outrageous, but her evolved mindset of believing that men and women are equal and paying forward what she learn on the shooting field to teach and advocate for other women who wanted to learn the craft. When she died in 1926, it was discovered that her entire fortune had been spent on various charities, including women’s rights and children’s services.

The Annie Trench Coat made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The black trench coat features a straight cut silhouette, double breasted closure, epaulette details on the shoulders and an adjustable wide black belt with button closure. The fabric of the coat is so unique that no two coats will be alike, since the paint pattern is uncontrollably splattered all over the fabric due to a paint machine malfunction.

THE MARY TRENCH COAT

Born into slavery and freed after the Civil War, Mary Fields was the first African American woman and the second woman in US history to become a star route carrier, protecting mail on her route from thieves and bandits. Rumor has it that mail thieves didn’t stand a chance against Ms Fields whose bad attitude, complemented by two guns and a knack for men’s clothing, made her the perfect inspiration behind the caramel trench coat.

The Mary Trench Coat made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

Tailored from 100% deadstock caramel cotton, the trench features asymmetrical double lapels, loose double breasted shape defined by a buckle waist belt closure at the front. This combined with the oversized fit of the coat and the raglan sleeves, blends both masculine and feminine features, making the trench the ultimate chic piece for in-between weather.

THE MARTHA DRESS

Calamity Jane’s business savvy mixed with her self sacrificing act of caring for victims of the small pox epidemic in California in 1878, at the risk of her own health has put this badass babe on our radar. Her courage and duality of living a life as both a woman and a man, a daring act at the time, has put her at the forefront of the dangerous dames of the Wild West we love to love. Being a pioneer fempreneur way before it was a thing, Martha Jane Cannary, or infamously known as Calamity Jane was also a performer, telling her tales in museums and cashing in on her notoriety by writing and publishing her own autobiography. Now, that’s what we call a self sufficient dangerous dame.

The Martha Dress made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The blue corduroy dress is inspired by her rebellious spirit and pursuit of freedom. It’s a prairie dress, with squared neckline, puffy sleeves, smocking details at the back, two triangle side pockets and a gypsy skirt.

THE NELLIE TRENCH COAT

Known for her business savvy and philanthropy, Nellie Cashman wasn’t your typical rebel, like the rest. Apart from having quite the adventurous spirit, as she was known for her golden rush feats, she was also a devoted business woman who had a knack for helping the less fortunate. During her lifetime, she opened and ran numerous restaurants and businesses across the United States which earned her the respect of her fellow peers. Despite all of that, her biggest quest was helping fund the building of a hospital in Fairbanks.

The Nellie Trench Coat made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The plaid coat is inspired by all of her courageous accomplishments and just like her offers a touch of the extraordinary. A longline trench with a nod to the classic trench coat, the Nellie Trench Coat offers a modern twist on classic lines. Inspired by traditional menswear, the plaid pattern keeps the look contemporary while the front patch pockets make it edgy. It has a single breasted closure at the front with plastic black buttons, exaggerated notched lapels and buttoned cuff tabs.

THE SUSIE DRESS

One of the first females to ever work in the field, Susan Anderson, also known as “Doc Susie” became famous for saving pneumonia patients back in the 1918. Known for her prowess at fighting infection, her fascinating story echoes throughout history making her one of the most well known Wild West boss ladies. Nevertheless, despite all of her truly impressive feats, the thing that drew us to her was her humble nature, declining the famous actress Ethel Barrymore’s offer to make a film about her life.

The Susie Dress made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The Susie Dress is oversized washed out sky blue midi dress with raglan sleeves, turtleneck and pleated front details. The dress has smocking details around the neck and sleeves with button closure at the back.

THE BRIE DRESS

Briget Biddy Mason was the inspiration behind the Brie Dress. Born as a slave, this incredible woman not only fought for her freedom and won, but also managed to earn enough to buy herself a land, becoming the first African American woman to own a land in LA, which she turned into a rental space. A savvy businesswoman she managed to make more than 300,000$, donating everything to charities to help the poor and needy.

The Brie Dress made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The dress is tailored from the smoothest cashmere and wool blend. It has a straight cut silhouette, with button details on the right, thigh high side slit, shoulder pads and removable waist band for defining waist line.

THE SING DRESS

Typically dressed in fine silk, Sing Choy (known by the white populace as China Mary) was the unofficial leader of Tombstone’s Chinese community in the 1880s. She was the liaison between the Chinese and white communities, supplying labor to white businessman. Even though she ran businesses that were questionable (though acceptable at the time), Choy managed a successful general store. Over the years she became known as a smart and respected businesswoman known for her honesty and trustworthiness.

The Sing Dress made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The floral vintage dress has pleated details on one side with tiny buttons that stretch across the shoulder and shoulder pads for support. It has a front slit that opens up when walking and an adjustable waist band with a black plastic buckle to define the waistline.

THE FRAN DRESS

Frances Lillian Willard Munds spent years lobbying politicians to grant women the right to vote. She spearheaded a petition drive to put women’s suffrage to a vote, where it was overwhelmingly approved by voters. Because of her lobbying Arizona became one of 15 states to give women the right to vote before the 19th Amendment was ratified in 1920. Her involvement in the suffrage movement led her to become Arizona’s first woman state senator and only the second woman in the U.S. elected to a state senate.

The Fran Dress made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The white ribbed dress is made with her in mind. It is a ribbed body-con, mid calf length dress with long sleeves, a front slit and a turtleneck.

THE FLORE COAT

Florence Shoemaker Thompson was the first female sheriff in the United States of America to carry out an execution, sentencing to death a rapist, therefore putting in effect a precedent that will protect women who are being raped, a legacy that will follow her throughout her career. And that’s exactly why she’s the inspiration behind the Flore Coat.

The Flore Coat made to order and made to measure by Bastet Noir x Pupi Milena

The sexism of the era mixed with the toxic masculinity of those times made it almost impossible for women to find their voice. Despite all of it, the women we highlight in this collection managed not only to find their voices, but roar with a courage that was pretty hard to ignore. We feel indebted to them and their willingness to break the norm, which is precisely the reason why we feel the need to amplify their voice and make sure they are never forgotten. We owe so much to these badass babes, as they paved the way for all of us women, creating the society of today.

An eclectic mix of masculine and feminine lines designed for comfort and cocooning days, the Wild West Collection is now available for you to devour. As always, you’re welcome.

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Dani Milo

Dani Milo

511 Followers

Owner of Bastet Noir and Coffice, fashion writer and marketeer.