Top: Dressage whip, bottom: Hunt crop. Photo by Montanabw

Top: Dressage whip, bottom: Hunt crop. Photo by Montanabw

I was recently talking with a friend about the difference between kink and vanilla sex – where we each saw that line shifting.  While I consider anything that includes intentional pain-spectrum exploration, power dynamics, or fantasy belonging in the kink spectrum, he generally went with anything you do with your hands/tongue/genitals being covered by vanilla sex, and bringing toys into play crossed the line into what made it sex kinky.  In reality I think the answer is found individually.  How you feel about your sexuality and what you’re doing can make it kinky or not, and you can identify how you wish regardless of what you’re actually doing.  But toys, huh, lets look at that…

Gear Fetishists, my friends, let’s talk about Gear Fetishists!

If you need at least one oversized duffel bag to hold the toys you are bringing to a single play party, you might be a gear fetishist

If the person you are playing with offers their favorite flogger/cane/vibrator to you before playing and you whip out 5 others to use instead, you might be a gear fetishist

If you spent the same amount of time picking out the colors of your custom made single tail as you did deciding which model you were getting made (and then perhaps just ordered multiples in different colors), you might be a gear fetishist

If you can’t get into a scene because there is a pin or patch missing on the Boy Scout uniform your partner was instructed to wear, you might be  gear fetishist

If you start making your own toys because no one has perfected the exact right shape or balance of a flogger or paddle handle, you might be a gear fetishist

If you salivate over what a fetish model is wearing before you objectify that person for their looks or suggested sexual position, you might be a gear fetishist

If you have a second job specifically to afford the objects of your kinky desires, you might be a gear fetishist

If the scent of your gear turns you on more than the scent of your partner(s), you might be a gear fetishist…

Overknee Boots. Photo by Marshall Astor - Food Fetishist

Overknee Boots. Photo by Marshall Astor – Food Fetishist

These creatures are lovely people (in my opinion).  I love being introduced to new toys by gear fetishists because I’m a geek at heart with a teacher fetish who gets more turned on by talking about sexy things than I do by just launching into it (match made in heaven)…  The properly prompted gear fetishist will tell you all about the toys they intend on using during play: where they got each item or who made the toy for them and why, what every part of the toy is good for (side/back/each end…), even history about how the gear developed and what other types of similar gear might look like and be used for in different ways than the one you’ll be using.

Gear fetishists are people who have a love for the look, materials, and feel of the toys, props, or costumes they are using at least as much as they do the scene itself or the partners they play with.

What’s an experience you’ve had with a gear fetishist, Karin?  Well, I had a great experience with one at a kink play party once.  We’d caught eyes a couple times over the night and had a conversation or two that went well.  I had noticed this person playing with a few people in various different ways, and at some point toward the end of the party we found some time and space to connect ourselves.  This event happened near the beginning of my explorations in the kink realm.  When I was asked what I liked in a scene, and answered that I didn’t know that much as my experiences had been limited up to that point, but I knew I liked rough body play a lot, he smiled and said he’d love to walk me through his toys and experiment with sensations – to systematically get a sense of what I responded to and where my limits lay with particular toys.  And he had a LOT of toys with him…

Sufficed to say it was a great play session.  Cuffed to a wooden cross we went through nearly every toy in his bag from floggers to canes, whips, paddles, electric prods, various cuffs, and my first experience with an evil stick!  I was surprised at the range of sensations I could enjoy under his enthusiastic experimentation.  He identified as an evil sadist, which matched my masochism well, and I came away from that session with a highly regarded new friend, and much more able to answer the question of what I liked and didn’t like for my future play dates.

Spanking Bench by Balzac

Spanking Bench by Balzac

I think I might belong in that category, where do I start?!  Welcome!  I encourage you to learn a lot about what catches your eye then.  You may find that shopping for clothing or toys at boutiques and sexuality resource centers and finding vendors and artisans who custom make their items to be much more satisfying than popping into the larger sex-r-us adultarama stores.  You may want to hang out at your favorite hardware stores and get ideas for items of your own designs too.

Two of my friends from my days working at Grand Opening! created Self Serve Toys in Albequerque, New Mexico and I’ve had other friends who have worked at Toys in Babeland and Good Vibrations stores throughout the years.  If you’re local to the Boston area you must check out Leather by Danny.  Regardless of where you reside, take time to walk around and get to know the vendors at Kinky Cons and Fetish Fair events near you as those people are often ready to talk about the products they carry (and sometimes make) in great detail.

Most importantly have fun learning more about what makes you tick and sharing it with the people you care for!

To Breath and Being,
~ Karin

If you like my blog, please check out my Patreon Page and consider supporting me, or just click here: Support the Artist

~Thank you.


Be an ABCs contributor:  Have a story about gear you love or your favorite fetishist and what you learned from them?  Fill out the as-anonymous-as-you-want feedback form below and you could see your writing published as a part of Wednesday’s “Perspectives on Kink: Conversations with the Community” blog on this site.  Don’t know what to write about?  Consider answering some of the Survey Questions I posted recently.  Happy writing, and thanks!

Questions, curiosities, or just wanna know more? Email: Karin@ABCsOfKink.com

or fill out this anonymous form:

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