Here it is, the long awaited epic recap of my weekend at SINSations in Leather 2011 held in Chicago. I’ve posted before how I was going to this, and my Twitter feed had been pretty much nothing but excited mentions of it for weeks ahead of time. I’ve never been to any kind of large scale kink event and while I had been told what to expect, something like this is just one of those things you have to experience it first hand to really know what it’s like.
For the longest time I’d been expecting to go by myself and meet up with friends there. Maybe meet new people, see what was there and play a little or a lot depending on my comfort level. I had mentioned I was going to one of my friends who was looking to get out of her bad relationship and looking to explore more of her burgeoning kinky side. Eva is someone I’ve known for almost three years now through school and I absolutely love and trust her. She was interested in going and after a few weeks of fence sitting and wavering, I managed to convince her to go and got her all registered. Her newfound enthusiasm was so cute. We’ve all been there in the complete newbie phase. “I have some collars if you want to wear them!” I giggled at her repeated cute texts and Google chat messages and reminded her that I’ve been in this lifestyle far longer than her and that combined with my extensive toy reviewing meant I had my fair share of gear to take with if I wanted to.
I planned my outfits for weeks ahead of time, quite literally. Finding and selecting the perfect pieces that would match everything and give me the look I was going for. I wanted cute and sexy, but not super slutty. The difficult thing is that when you’re outside of your hotel room or the actual roped off convention area, attendees have to be completely covered and all fetishwear must be not visible. You can push it depending on what’s in fashion (corsets for example), but rope harnesses, nudity, excessive bare skin, etc is strongly discouraged if not completely outlawed. This is an event held at a reputable hotel and to our great surprise when we arrived, there was a cheerleading/dance convention or competition also going on there the same weekend. Great plan, hotel people. Book a fetish convention at the same time as a dance convention with lots of judgmental mothers and little girls. Oh well, we made the best of it. The one upside is that at a certain point in the evening, all the underage kids and their parents went to bed and you could walk around with slightly less attention directed at you.
When Eva and I arrived on Friday, we checked into the hotel and threw our stuff in the room. We worked on our make up a little and I put on my ubiquitous super long curly wig. I had almost forgot my fake hair back at my apartment when packing my stuff and that would have been a fail of epic proportions if that had happened. I had a lot of my outfits planned and based around my very long hair. Little girl with big hair? Hot! After we got ourselves gussied up, we went down and registered ourselves at the conference. Ahhhh, I forgot what it’s like to be around people you can make a dirty joke to and they don’t look at you like you’re some sex offender. That’s one of the downsides of being in rather conservative town and social community.
|My Friday night outfit|
We chilled out and talked with some people after registering and Eva got her first taste of true BDSM people. “Do they all stand that close to you?” I explained there’s not so much a concept of personal space especially after you’ve been up in someone’s junk or seen them completely naked tied up and beaten. Friday night’s opening ceremonies were quickly approaching, so we scooted up to our room and changed from our street clothing to our more “adventurous” clothing. She wore a short skort and top that tied between her breasts and I wore a pink and black corset, leather shorts, fishnets and heels.
I later added a large feather headpiece I had made and the gloves for a full burlesque/saloon girl feel. Needless to say I got quite a bit of attention in that outfit and I really enjoyed showing it off.
Opening ceremonies were nice and while they were long somewhat, it was interesting to hear everybody speak and hear what they had to say. I like people getting named at the beginning so I can put a name to a face throughout an event. As soon as opening ceremonies were over, the play time began. That’s when I ran back up to the hotel room and grabbed my accessories I forgot. We made our way back down and hung out with some people for awhile. I showed off the toys that Crystal Delights Toys graciously supplied to me to show off for the weekend. Everybody was unbelievably impressed and in love with all that is Pyrex and Swarovski toys, as they should be! (Side note: if you don’t have a Crystal Delights toy yet, what are you waiting for?!) Eva and I managed to find ourself in a very interesting conversation about prudery versus sex negativity in our society.
Friday night playtime was rather subdued and neither Eva and I were really looking to play that night. I would have entertained an offer, but we more sat back and watched. We watched some interesting rope suspensions and other scenes around us and talked with some very interesting people. I could tell Eva was still testing her feet in the water of BDSM play and I wasn’t about to go off and abandon her to get myself all beaten up or worked over when she was still uncertain about things. We watched some suspension attempts by my friends and then ventured off to test out a violet wand that Eva was really interested in. She enjoyed it, but has sensitive skin and didn’t do much of it. I liked the sensation on my arm, but couldn’t do much else without further consultation because of my stainless steel piercings. Friday night wound down around 1am and we scooted off to bed with the promise of more to come on Saturday.
|Sailor’s Knot bracelet|
Saturday morning came sooner than I think everybody would have liked but our 9am class about wearable shibari (rope decorations and rope play) by the lovely Ms. Cherries Jubalie was an excellent class. Rope is generally not my thing thanks to a very impatient personality, but I’m learning to like it after this weekend. I can definitely see the appeal and the day to day stuff is something I am drawn to. The idea that having something close to your body throughout your day to remind you of your partner or your lifestyle is very appealing. I’m someone who has to dress and look very conservative on a daily basis and if I didn’t have something like my piercings to remind me of my kinky nature, I’m not sure I could handle a lot of the daily stresses of my life. She suggested something even as simple as a sailor’s knot bracelet like I’m showing here at right could be a connection to your “other” life. I have one of these and hadn’t even thought about it. I’ll be wearing it more often now that I’ve connected those two things in my mind!
Our next class was Bondage 201 (mainly with rope) by a personal friend of mine Leon MonkeyFetish and there’s little more I can say about it than Eva turned to me with this glint in her eye and said “I think I like rope.” We’ve created a monster! Between being tied and tying, it was very enjoyable and definitely educational. I had to run out a few times to answer my phone so I missed some things, but I encourage anybody interested in rope play even a little bit to check out his site because there are many many step by step tutorials on how to do some basic to advanced rope work that I doubt I’d ever be able to master thanks to an inability to tie anything more complicated than my shoelaces.
We had lunch with friends and where there’s kinky people in large groups, there will be exciting and stimulating conversations to be had. Eva and I decided to go to Jack Rinella‘s class about building long term relationships, which proved to be very interesting and educational. As someone who would like to eventually be in long term relationships with some bite to them, we wanted to learn what made them work and what would eventually tear them down. While it was obviously directed toward a BDSM-involved crowd, there was some very valid points that can be applied to most any relationship. From what I got out of it, it’s basically centered around the idea that people in relationships need to communicate, continually assess and reassess where they are and where they want to be in their relationship, and understand that people grow over time. Where a relationship starts is not where it may end up in the long run. It makes perfect sense when you think about it objectively, but when you’re in the situation yourself you may not be able to think so objectively.
Eva and I took a break after that session and hung out with Cherry and Leon for awhile. Sometimes the best connections are made when you’re just having down time and connecting that way. Friends are not made in the heat of the moment, but instead when it’s slow and dull. I can’t say that erotic falconry is all that dull, but we had a good time laughing about it and going through the pictures. It’s something Eva and I discovered a few years ago and is now a running joke with us. Dan and Dawn joined us for awhile and there were Ferrero Rocher chocolates to be had thanks to them. Mmmmmm tasty! After awhile the four of us (Leon, Cherry, Eva and myself) decided to leave the hotel to get dinner. Tasty Mexican food was had by all.
|My Schoolgirl Outfit|
All weekend we were building to Saturday night’s playtime and I had received a promise to get my bum beat on by Leon. I was super excited at the possibility of it because as we know I haven’t done any play since September. My no-play, no-cuddle, no-sex chastity vow has come to a natural end and I was ready and willing to put myself out there for good BDSM play. Eva was excited about the possibility of some rope play now that she’d warmed up to the scene and the people there. We all hung out in Eva and my hotel room for awhile before changing into our Friday night wear. I put on my schoolgirl outfit, which has been known to reduce most anybody to a drooling mess. Eva stuck with the black mini dress I had loaned her for the weekend. Down in the dungeon, the crowd was pretty thin, but it was better that way for Eva because she was not super excited about getting watched while she did her suspension. In fact, she borrowed my white top to use as a blindfold instead of having to see everybody that was mulling around or doing their own thing. Yes, that means I sat there and watched in just my skirt.
Leon worked on her suspension and Cherry and I watched. While I’m not the best person to explain the physics or the details of it, the best description of it is that Eva was suspended face up like she was laying in a hammock. She looked super comfortable and she said it was super comfortable. It even popped a disk in her back she has difficulty popping and was like a free trip to the chiropractor for her! After about five minutes total she was let down from her suspension and it was my turn. Whereas Eva didn’t want any impact play, that’s mainly what I wanted. We sat there for awhile trying to figure out what to do, ultimately decided I’d have my arms bound behind me and a rope harness tied so that I could be held upright and not run away while I was getting worked over. While I have had a rope breast harness before, I haven’t had my arms restrained by rope or been tied to a stable point before.
Now here comes the fuzzy part for me. I wish I could explain everything in minute detail, but once the fists start flying and my ass gets hit, my mind goes into a special place and I don’t pay attention to the details as much. There was biting and ultimately I ended up with something like seven bite marks all over my body, mostly on my thighs, ass, and back. I was hit with a pineapple knot, or what I would better call a “rope wrecking ball.” I got lowered to my knees with my forehead pressed to the floor and my ass received a lot more attention from his hands and ultimately his feet. Yes, I got kicked … a lot. Mmm it was delicious. Leon is OCD like me so once he bit one side of my back he had to do the other side as well. I have matching bite marks on the small of my back on either side. I quite like them but they make for interesting sensations.
I think what was most interesting for me is that while I didn’t use my safeword even through the worst of the pain, I started to cry. I’ve cried a few times while getting beat, but it’s not something I do every time. I’ve been dealing with a lot of crap in my head lately, and I’ve been questioning myself and my intentions in the BDSM lifestyle. I’ve often said that for me beatings are a catharsis and this turned out to be no different. It allowed me to get out of my head for a few minutes and focus on the sensations and what was happening to my body. Before long I was downright sobbing and I think I freaked out Leon when I started to cry so hard. I had to reassure him it was okay and that I was doing alright. That it was a good thing I was crying and that it was making me feel better. I was worried that Eva would get too freaked out by me crying, but by this point she wasn’t really paying attention to what was happening to me because she was processing her drop. I don’t blame her. I’ve been there.
|The rope marks on my thighs after|
The beating finally subsided and I got to wipe my tears away. I felt so cleansed and bare. It was really a great feeling. We hadn’t discussed doing it before, but then I asked if I could be suspended like Eva since she had loved it so much. It’s an experience I’ve been wanting to try and this was the perfect opportunity. We thought about the best way to do it given my body and given the fact that I tend to have low or poor circulation in my limbs. Ultimately I got rigged up with another chest rope harness and was suspended face down with rope around my chest, thighs and ankles. There was a lot of pressure on my ribs and sternum so some adjusting needed to be done, easily done when you have someone experienced like Leon. Once I finally got off the ground it was this amazing feeling of flying. He laid down on the floor and I spun around for awhile while he watched me. It was a lot of fun, but like all things, I had to finally come down and the ropes came off. Yes, there were some pretty amazing rope indentations on my skin.
Eva was getting a pretty amazing looking foot rub and I was processing my own drop at this point. I wandered around for a bit and when I got back she was sleepy and I could tell her adrenaline levels were crashing, a cue that her sub drop was hitting full scale. She went on up to our hotel room and I watched Leon work with Cherry on a suspension too. Three suspensions in a night! I was really enjoying it but like Eva, my energy levels were plummeting now too. By then it was close to 1am and I was wanting sleep in the baddest way possible. I had to run down to the lobby after I took off all my make up and hair and one of the most touching moments of all weekend was riding the elevator back up with the event photographer. All weekend he’s seen me in full make up and fake hair. I wasn’t even sure he recognized me but indeed he did. On Sunday he saw me again in full makeup and hair and told me, “You look beautiful without the wig too.” It seriously put a huge smile on my face.
|“Have you pet the kitty today?” shirt|
Sunday morning rolled around and dragging my now bruised and sore body out of bed was a serious challenge. There was some groaning and protests but I had to get out eventually. The shower felt so good, but it was really hard to do much movement given how sore my ass was. there were some seriously great looking bruises beginning to form. One thing about me is that I really love being marked after a beating and I take pride in meticulously documenting my markings on an almost 6 hour incremental basis. My Sunday outfit was a little toned down from my previous outfits. I wore a tank top I got in Vegas that said “Have you pet the kitty yet today?” with my black satin waist cincher over it and the same pair of leather shorts. I had several people comment how cute and tiny I looked. I guess losing 15 pounds since November and wearing a tightly laced corset will do that to you. Sunday’s only class that we could go to was Leon’s Rope Finishing and Care class and while I had to run out a few times to answer my phone, Eva said it was a great class and I have a little segment of hemp rope to finger now. A reminder of the weekend so to speak.
|My new high heels! LOVE!|
We did a little shopping in the vendor area and I convinced myself into getting a new pair of heels (self proclaimed shoe whore!) at an amazing deal. Given I find so few shoes in general and definitely heels that fit me, I try not to pass up a size 5 or smaller heel when I can find them. I don’t often have someone who puts the heels on my feet when I try stuff on and that was a different sensation, but I won’t say I didn’t enjoy it. At least I didn’t kick the guy in the face like the last person to give me a pedicure!
Unfortunately it was time for Eva and I to go and it was getting late in the day on Sunday. Being students means we had prior commitments to schoolwork we needed to complete on Sunday, despite wanting to stay. If I could have I would have stayed there for another few hours with people. We packed up our stuff and changed back into ‘normal’ clothes and were on our way back to our tiny little student apartments.
So did I have a good time at SINSations in Leather? Yes! I loved my time there and I got to meet a lot of really great people. Sometimes being in law school is very confining and isolating. It’s especially isolating when nobody I know is interested in BDSM enough to let me talk freely about this stuff. Thankfully now I have Eva to share these experiences with and talk to. I’m hoping to help her on her own journey into the lifestyle, no matter how far into it she gets. We were all newbies at one point, young and naive. I think what I most took from the weekend was a reinforcement of what I feel is my purpose in this life. I feel like I’m here in this particular life to make a positive influence in people’s lives. If I can put a smile on one person’s face every day and know that I’ve made their day or their life better, than my day has been a positive one.
Would I go back to another event? Most certainly yes! I would love to go to future events and drag Eva along with me given the timing and financials are in right place. I’m looking into stuff starting after my bar exam in late July and hoping that I can make this a regular thing.
For me SINSations in Leather was an eye opening and enriching experience. I have the marks to prove it. I got the catharsis I was seeking for a very long time and I feel lighter and cleaner because of it. I met a lot of really good people and have some opportunities now that I wouldn’t have had if I hadn’t gone. And the best part? A new pair of really great high heels!