My Christmas aesthetic is Hot Priest Summer

Words by Sasha Gattermayr

Doing the Lord’s work.

A sartorial dedication to Catholicism is a strange hill for an atheist to die on.

And yet here I am, no closer to religious epiphany but certainly closer to an aesthetic one.

A hot priest summer is exactly the palette cleanser my wardrobe needs; and with the head-to-toe-black fashion complex built into my Melbourne DNA, translating this pop-cultural phenomenon into genuine outfit inspiration doesn’t actually feel that hard.

Perhaps it’s this exact fashion complex fused with a strange sexual fascination with Andrew Scott in Fleabag that sparked this seasonal revelation. It also probably had something to do with Rihanna at the 2018 Met Gala.

My interest was definitely piqued when breakout Australian designer, Tala Surace, sent her deity-inspired debut collection down the MFW runway. She used religious iconography and Gothic references to inform her interpretation of stylised androgyny, with a hint of BDSM latex of which Silas from The DaVinci Code would approve.

The Hot Priest zeitgeist has stirred something in my subconscious erring on hagiography, and though some might go hard on Renaissancecore this November, my new fashion religion is clericalcore.

Here are Fashion Journal’s picks for a wet, hot, Episcopal summer look.

1.  Maison Michel Felt Fedora
Price: $848
From: netaporter.com

Do as the Roman Catholics do, and throw some serious sartorial shade with this wide brim.

2. Alighieri St Christopher Charm Necklace
Price: $560
From: matchesfashion.com

Nothing says commitment like dangling a saint around your neck. Insert some much-needed bling into your outfit while also staying dedicated to Our Father.

3. Gucci Velvet Jacquard Cape
Price: $2,250
From: netaporter.com

Make like the Pope and jazz up the all-black with some gold brocade detailing.

4. We11done Faux Leather Turtleneck
Price: $614
From: netaporter.com

A DIY dog collar requires some layering and some poetic licence. A mock-leather turtleneck will do the trick.

5. Deitas Silk Twill Wide Leg Pants
Price: $993
From: netaporter.com

A Palazzo pant is equal parts on-trend, breezy for the summer days spent in the chapel, and in line with modesty requirements. Checks all the boxes.

6. Birkenstock Milano Sandal
Price: $120
From: asos.com.au

The triple-strap sandal is a big nod to Jesus, who was definitely wearing these BC. It’s the ultimate throwback to the Lamb of God but also the Middle Ages Monk.

7. Kurt Geiger Kitten Heel Buckle Boot
Price: $438
From: asos.com.au

For the days when you need to dress up a little (the Sabbath, Easter Eucharist, Christmas Eve etc.), touches of gold and metal detailing and a covered toe goes a long way. Very Reformation, very now.

8. Zimmerman Floral Print Ramie Blouse
Price: $550
From: netaporter.com

Long sleeves and high collars are offset by the intricate embroidery in this breathable cotton number, essential for the vintage vicar throwing a summer tombola in the churchyard. Move over Archbishop of Canterbury, there’s a new style in the diocese.

9. Icon Signet Ring
Price: $30
From: asos.com.au

Every style needs its signature and though it’s hard to mix it up when clericalcore has some pretty strict guidelines, this kind of ring can display your piety morning, noon and night. Throw this knuckleduster up and fist pump the Big Guy.

When I say #hotpriestsummer, I mean hot in every sense of the world. My poor wilted limbs will bake inside this Anglican-inspired garb on a 40-degree day.

But at least I’ll be sunsmart.

Sasha is the Digital Editor at Fashion Journal.

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