Posts Tagged ‘aslan leather’
I’m going to Toronto!
I’m still working out the exact dates, but it looks like Kristen and I will be there October 5-10. I’ll be doing a few exciting things, including attending and presenting at Unholy Harvest, and hopefully getting a little tour of Aslan Leather, and seeing some friends.
Come see me! Here’s the details.
First of all, I still need readers for the Dirty Queer Sex night at Glad Day books! So, hey Toronto! I edited a dirty smutty queer book called Say Please: Lesbian BDSM Erotica, and I’m doing a book launch in Toronto on October 9th at Glad Day Books. I’m looking for queers of any stripes to read kinky queer stories—preferably stories they have penned. The dirtier the better! Readings should be 7-10 minutes. Email email@example.com with a sample of your writing ASAP. More details about the book: http://saypleasebook.wordpress.com
Where I’ll Be
Saturday, October 6th, 10-11:30am
Many of us have experience with strapping on, packing, and playing, but there are lots of new products out there on the market that might be exciting and that you haven’t encountered yet. Writer and sex educator Sinclair Sexsmith talk about what cocks are good for packing, what options are out there for pack-and-play, which harnesses are the most loved, and which to avoid. Plus, she’ll delve into some cock confidence, getting into the psychology of penetration, and discussing what it’s like to shoot from the hip. Come get the nuts and bolts of strapping it on and fucking. You’ll learn about positions and lube, how different products work, what “cock confidence” means, and the psychology behind strapping on and playing with a cock with a partner, or with oneself.
A night of DIRTY QUEER SEX!
Featuring readers from the SAY PLEASE: LESBIAN BDSM EROTICA, and many special guests! Performers include Andrea Zanin and other sexy queers TBA. Hosted by Sinclair Sexsmith, writer of the Sugarbutch Chronicles and editor of Say Please & Best Lesbian Erotica 2012.
In Say Please, Sinclair Sexsmith presents a cornucopia of queer kink—tantalizing tales rich in variety and saucy details of girls put in their place—and held there firmly. Whether readers dream of surrendering to a lover or of taking control, Say Please offers plenty of erotic inspiration and gives readers exactly what they want! Come hear authors from the book read their stories and celebrate the release of this kinky queer collection.
Everyone loves a bad boy: they know what they want, and they take it … and probably ride away on a motorcycle afterwards. But how can you be a bad boy without being an asshole? How do you practice that potent combination of masculinity and dominance without misogyny or internalized homophobia and with respect for women? How can you enhance your dominance in consensual, loving ways? On the flip side, how can you bring that dominant side out of someone who may be nervous to let it emerge? How do you become – or find – the bad boy of your dreams? Learn from a pro: Sinclair Sexsmith, kinky queer butch top who’s been writing about dominance since 2006, will teach you how to get what you want.
I’m starting to work out my fall schedule … more details about that soon, I hope. You can always follow the newest news about my travel schedule at mrsexsmith.com/appearances.
I’ve been searching for The Perfect Harness for a long time.
I think at a certain point I gave up, and gave in to the fact that there’s no one singular perfect harness, and that I’ll just have different ones for different things or for different cocks. I haven’t been reviewing harnesses as much lately (though I do still try to keep up with what’s new out there).
Recently, though, my beloved Jaguar G harness reached its last days, and I replaced it with two other harnesses from Aslan Leather. I know some folks really don’t like leather because it is an animal product, and as a former vegan I understand that, but as someone obsessed with the best possible materials I can find, I just haven’t found anything better—or even comparable. There are quite a few vegan options for Aslan harnesses, for the record, and I do really like the Slick G.
And while I love Outlaw Leather and many of the other companies who make great harnesses, I think Aslan is the best, hands down. Their leather is buttery and feels already broken in, and so easily becomes a second skin, conforming to the heat of my body and wrapping me in it so I can barely tell I’m wearing anything at all.
The Jaguar G
The Jaguar is one of their most popular harnesses, and I would say is one of the most popular harnesses period, based on the dozens of Cock Confidence workshops I’ve conducted and based on a totally informal survey of everyone I meet who partakes in strap-on sex. It comes in various colors—like white, black, and cherry.
I prefer the Jaguar G, the g-string one-strap version (because of the way the one strap hits my clit while I’m fucking). But there are many variations to the Jaguar, and I bet you can find one that is perfect for you.
I frequently go back to my Leather Pleasure Harness, which I also frequently recommend to folks who are starting out with strap-on play because it easily converts from a one-strap to a two-strap and back, so you can experiment with both and see which one you prefer, and because it’s relatively affordable, much cheaper than a lot of the other fancier leather harnesses anyway.
The Leather Pleasure Harness
I’m not sure how many of these harnesses I have basically worn through in the last five years or so. Three, four, maybe? Maybe it’s because I don’t know how to take good enough care of my leather—but I clean it with saddle soap, have experimented with mink oil, and nothing I do can quite make it waterproof enough that eventually, it doesn’t end up soaking into the leather and unable to come clean. I’m the kind of person who will use a thing until it is pretty much unusable, I wasn’t exactly raised middle class, maybe more like upper-working-class or lower-middle-class or with middle class aspirations, so it sometimes pains me to retire one of these harnesses, but I care a little bit more that my sex toys are attractive and safe to share, and after a certain point, my leather harnesses are neither.
So this time, when I asked Aslan to send me a new Jaguar G, I also asked for a new Leather Pleasure Harness, but this time with the leg straps in rubber instead of leather. Because that’s the piece that gets all … beautifully juiced up, anyway, that’s the piece that becomes uncleanable after a while.
And I couldn’t be more thrilled. I love this new harness, and it is so much easier to keep clean. I’ve reviewed the Leather Pleasure Harness before, so check that out if you want more details about the harness specs.
Between the Jaguar G and the Leather Pleasure Harness, I think my search for The Perfect Harness might be over. If nothing else, any other harness definitely has a lot to live up to. Thank you, Aslan!
Via email, Katy asks:
I will be going to my first BDSM convention next weekend … I have a question. I’m not particularly a fetishwear kinda guy… What would you wear? I feel like you and I have similar style and kinks.
I would probably wear jeans, a button down shirt, a tie, and nice shoes, because that tends to be what I wear. Definitely a belt, I never wear a button down shirt without a belt, I always think you need a belt if you’re going to be tucking in a shirt, and these days I wear a belt with everything, it makes the outfit seem much more pulled together.
Sometimes I fetish that up by wearing a bondage belt or wrist cuff, but generally a tie is enough. Oh, but if it were me, I would definitely get the right color hanky and flag according to the hanky code.
I’d say that you should wear what makes you feel most sexy and hot, not necessarily something fetish-y but something that makes you feel attractive and confident.
(If I was fancy, I’d do up an image for this outfit dooce-style, but I have to get some workshop prep done. Next time!)
So Babeland did this sweet Valentine’s Day gift guide, and it got me thinking about what sexy toys and gifts I would highly, highly recommend, above all others, for you to pick up for your sweetheart (and, uh, yourself) for this Valentine’s Day.
I’ve been reviewing products for more than two years, and these are some of my personal favorites. The queer porn is especially good as a Valentine’s Day gift I think … plus, if you get a year-long membership, or even a month-long, that will be an ongoing present, one you can enjoy together and that might help take your sex life to a new level. It’s much easier to point to some sex act or product on screen and say, “So what do you think of that?” in order to open up conversation than it is to say, “Hey, I want to try …”
Hope you find something you like, and that the day is fun, regardless of how you celebrate.
So let’s hear it: what are you getting your sweetheart, or yourself, this year? How, if at all, are you celebrating? What are your very favorite toys that I might have left off this list?
The Butch Voices NYC Regional Conference is almost here!
The conference itself is tomorrow, Saturday the 25th, with registration opening up at 9am and workshops beginning at 10am. I’m doing a Cock Confidence workshop at 1:30pm tomorrow, and I have two Aslan Leather harnesses, three Vixen Creations cocks, and another Tantus cock to give away. I’ll also be showing off the brand new hot-off-the-presses VIP Super Soft pack-and-play cock that is barely even released.
I’m also modering a panel called “In the Public Eye: Visibility in Media” with some fabulous folks: Denise Madison from GirlzParty, Grace Moon from Velvet Park Media, Gina Mamone from Riot Grrrl Ink, and Dasha Snyder of The D Word fame who writes at Digital Goddess.
But aside from my own involvement in the panel, there are many more things going on! Tonight is a social event to meet & greet conference attendees at Speed Friending/Dating at Dixon Place, tomorrow is a special Queer Memoir/Sideshow Reading Series Mash-Up at Bluestockings Bookstore, and there’s a special Butch Voices Submit play party in Brooklyn late tomorrow night.
I don’t know if I’ll make it out to play, but I’m really looking forward to meeting people, hanging out, and talking about butch things all weekend. Kristen is baking her “face off,” as she is prone to saying, making her famous rosemary sea salt chocolate chip cookies, savory corn and cheddar muffins, and a special treat for someone’s birthday tomorrow.
If you miss these events, there’s another Butch Brunch on Saturday, October 16th which will be a nice follow up to the conference for those who miss the company of other butches.
To tie up this nice countdown, I’m featuring a recent novel from 2004 called Crybaby Butch by Judith Frank, published by Firebrand Books. It won the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Debut Fiction in 2005. My (lesbian) book group read it about a year and a half ago, and we all liked it quite a bit—which is hard, usually novels especially are hotly contested. I remember there being some disapproval of how the femme partners were depicted (as controlling, fairly stereotypical “women”, perhaps with not enough depth) but we liked the butches.
Here’s the premise, from the publisher’s website:
Drawing on her experience as an adult literacy tutor, Judith Frank’s first novel traces the difficult and sometimes hilarious connection between two butches of different generations – a middle-class, thirty-something adult literacy teacher and her older, working-class student. With a disparate group of adult learners as the backdrop, Frank examines, with warmth and wit, the relationship between education and gender, class, and racial identity. Judith Frank is a winner of the Astraea Foundation’s Emerging Lesbian Writer’s Fund prize in fiction. A professor of English at Amherst College, she lives and writes in western Massachusetts.
There are not very many books out there with “butch” in the title, and even fewer of them published in the last ten years. It’s a good read that is complex and interesting, engaging and emotionally enthralling. A few folks mentioned Crybaby Butch in the comments when I featured Stone Butch Blues two weeks ago, all of them with praise for the book.
So now that I’ve gone through some of the major butch books, tell me, which ones did I leave out? Are there others I should have featured?
So when Carrie at Aslan Leather sent me the Rubber G, I also got the Leather Pleasure Harness, one of Aslan’s signature harnesses, and to me the most versatile. It has various configurations: two-strap, one-strap, driver pad or not, variable sizes of O-ring. The straps are thin and high quality leather, the craftsmanship, as I’d expect from Aslan, is lovely and detailed.
It has become my current go-to harness. It’s what I pull out when I want to play, it’s what I use.
This harness is leather. Beautiful leather. Buttery soft, well-treated leather. There’s nothing wrong with this leather whatsoever. Oh wait—yes there is: it’s porous, and absorbs liquid. For that reason, as with many other leather harnesses I have known and loved, I do not expect this harness to last.
2. Metal (Buckles & O-Rings)
I continually stress the quality of construction in Aslan products, and of course this is no exception. It’s lovely: there are buckles on both hips around the waist and sliding O-rings on the other two (or one) straps.
3. Style, Shape, Padding
This harness comes with a “driver pad,” the bit of padding that would sit behind the base of the dildo against the wearer, but I’ve removed it so there isn’t as much separating me from my cock and my girl. The straps are a little thin, which personally I like, but you may not—I do find they can dig in a little bit. I love the convertible strap style, and if you for example aren’t sure whether you prefer one style or the other yet, this is a great one to buy because it’s easy to change for one to the other as desired. It’s very adjustable and fits hips from 26″-44″ (and the larger version fits up 56″) comfortably.
I’m still in search of a harness this simple that is not leather, or perhaps just a harness with a replaceable or removable center strap that is not leather (probably rubber). But this is getting closer!
I’ve got a slightly customized Rubber G that I still need to report about … the center strap is a bit thinner, and I do like that better, and oh the rubber is growing on me. I love how easily it cleans up.
PS … Did I mention that Aslan Leather sent me a harness to give away at my Cock Confidence & Strapping It On workshop at Butch Voices NYC this weekend? Hope you got a ticket, because registration is sold out. I hear if you come early with a lot of patience you might (might) be able to get in. Thanks Aslan—can’t wait to draw a name and send someone home with a new toy.
Thank heavens, someone finally answered my prayers: I’ve been in search of The Harness for quite many years now, with some successes, but no amazing clouds-parting-rays-of-sunlight perfection. The Aslan Leather Jaguar G is my current favorite—or has been, up until now.
I jumped into the Slick G immediately. Couldn’t wait to try something other than leather or faux-leather or vinyl, which is all I’ve really ever tried. It just feels like leather never really comes clean, because, well, it doesn’t, it’s absorbent, and the kind of sex I have tends to be messy. Seems like my leather harnesses only last six months or so before I’m turned off by their … obvious wear.
So, rubber. I was a bit skeptical. But Carrie over at Aslan told me this the go-to favorite, so I wanted to try it out for myself. Would it be too thick? Too sharp around the edges? Not melding-with-my-skin enough?
And most importantly: would the shape and tension be enough to get me off?
Short answer: not quite. But I haven’t yet given up hope on the Slick G.
Here’s the harness breakdown factors:
Obviously, Aslan Leather uses really high-quality stuff. They make arguably the best harness available, and most people’s #1 choice, the Jaguar. (It’s not quite my favorite—mostly because I prefer 1-strap to the 2-strap style, but I do like the Jaguar G, as I mentioned.)
So: The Slick G is made of rubber. How does that work? Quite well, really. It’s a little bit stiff, not the pliable leather I’m used to, but it is such a relief to scrub it clean. It is pretty thick, it doesn’t really warm up and mold to my body like I’m used to with leather, but it doesn’t feel like a huge barrier. I am really fond of barely-there kind of harnesses, just three little straps and an o-ring (which is basically what the other harness, the Leather Pleasure Harness, can turn into), so this definitely feels like something there, but how could it not? It’s a slab of rubber. It does kind of cut into my skin around the edges, but not enough that I’m not into it. For the clean-up factor alone, I’m game.
2. Metal: the buckles + O rings
There is no O ring, so in theory some cocks would fit better than others through the opening, but it fits my favorite (the Vixskin Maverick, which is 2″ in diameter) quite well, so that’s all that really matters.
It’s beautiful, of course. Really nice work. The buckles on the waist strap are locking, and easily tighten. This is the ‘average’ size version, for hips from 25″-44″, and Aslan makes a slightly larger version too, for hips 36″-56″.
The strap that goes between the legs has three snaps for a choice of large-medium-small fit. At the smallest, it doesn’t quite go as tight as I like it (what can I say, I like it tight). This is the only problem I have with the harness, and I like it so much that I think I might actually try to get another snap installed, or move one of the snaps (I’m sure I don’t have the tools for it, but I think one of the local leather shops might).
I think because the center strap wasn’t really tight enough, I have yet to get off while fucking with it. Could it have been me, just a fluke, just need more times trying it? Yeah, maybe. But some other harnesses (like the Jaguar G) I can get off while using pretty much every time. Sometimes I know there are times when I just can’t do it, but times when I think it can happen, usually it can. And I thought it could happen, and couldn’t get the friction or positioning or feeling right enough, and I think that’s because it just wasn’t hitting at the right place. Everything else was so perfect! Perfect girl, perfect dirty words, perfect calmness and openness and sweet kisses and skin-to-skin and all of those lovely luscious things that happen when K & I are just in it, but: no go.
3. Style, shape, & padding
I like how the cock rides, I like how it drives, I like how low it rides. I like the shape of the harness. It doesn’t have much padding behind the base of the dildo, but I don’t mind that. It’s not very “padded” in general, since it’s rubber, but I’m not minding so much. I do wish the between-the-legs strap was a bit more narrow, though; especially in the ass cheeks area, it gets just a little bit pokey.
A slightly thinner center strap, and more options for the snaps in the center strap so it can sit tighter, and I think that’d be a winner.
Here’s how Aslan describes the Slick G harness:
This one strap harness made with sexy strong 100% water resistant rubber delivers the ultimate dildo control. Tough rubber stays in place when the fun get’s heavy let’s you play in the shower, tub wherever you choose! No “o” ring for greater intimacy.
ASLAN Rear Strap adjustment system ensures a comfortable fit for all body types! Low rider dildo placement provides excellent control and lovely clitoral stimulation. Discreet one strap design can double as a ANAL plug holder. No “o” ring for greater intimacy and less chance of bruising your partner from heavy thrusting.
The folks at Aslan know what’s up, know the kind of sex I’m having and even (I suspect) have some of that kind of sex themselves, and build wonderful tools that are some of the highest quality sex toys available. I’m thrilled to be reviewing some things for them. This isn’t quite The Harness, but it’s close. It’s damn close. And I am almost totally sold on the rubber, I would definitely try another one, or slightly modify this one, to try to get it closer to perfect.
Maybe The Perfect Harness doesn’t actually exist out there, I know, I might be kidding myself. But I have found pretty much The Perfect Cock, and The Perfect Leather Wrist & Ankle Restraints, and The Perfect Butt Plug—can’t I have a perfect harness, too? If there’s one to be found, I think it’s probably made by Aslan. Can’t wait to review more for them, I’ll let you know what I think of the Leather Pleasure Harness as soon as I have a chance to adequately review it.
The Black Cat G is vinyl, which is why I picked it up, actually. Seems like most harnesses – the really nice ones, anyway – are leather, but I’ve been having trouble keeping my leather harnesses clean, so I thought I might try a waterproof material instead. It’s alright – definitely easier to clean, and I’m less worried about it, but the straps are pretty wide and the material is not very pliable. I recently reviewed the new one-strap version of the Jaguar harness, called the Jaguar G, also from Aslan Leather, and the leather is just so buttery and soft and beautiful, something this thick and dense and kind of, well, hard, is fairly unpleasant, especially when it’s between my legs and pressed up against my, ahem, slightly more delicate places.
The front panel of this harness is pretty big. I much prefer minimalistic harnesses (like the Bare as you Dare, though the buckles are weak and it slips a LOT) and the excessive material gets in the way of being pressed skin-to-skin, which I don’t like. I want the harness and cock to feel like part of me, I don’t want it to cover up my skin and make me less sensitive and less feeling of the experience.
This is especially a problem in the triangle front panel part, where the O-ring resides, but it’s also a problem with the straps. It’s kind of nice to have wide straps around my hips, they don’t dig in as much, but the wide strap between my legs pinches and is rather uncomfortable. It’s not so bad in the front, but especially in the back, it’s way too wide.
Buckles & O-Rings
The buckles are standard, locking, and very decent; it doesn’t slip around and since it isn’t leather, it doesn’t stretch with body heat, and stays tight. I like that.
The center strap, that goes through the legs, is connected with snaps instead of buckles, which means that there are only a few options for how tight it can get – I tend to wear harnesses very low on my hips and very tight between my legs, and that’s not possible with this one, because in order for the center strap to be taut it has to be much longer, and the tautness is ultimately most important. So, I don’t like that it snaps instead of buckles (or instead of having D-rings to make the length more variable).
The O-ring is rather difficult … it has two snaps, at the top and bottom, so the ring itself is interchangeable, so you can use any size O-ring (and thus any size cock), but there is also a hole in the front panel behind the O-ring. So you can either put the cock through the panel AND the O-ring, or just put it through the O-ring. The hole in the panel is only 1 3/4″ (and thus not big enough for my favorite go-to cock, the Maverick by Vixskin), and if trying to get a rather big cock into the O-ring without putting it through the panel, it’s hard to get the snaps closed. It’s not really made to use with a cock that is outside of the back panel – but again, Maverick, the cock I use 95% of the time, is too big for the panel, so I this harness isn’t The Perfect Harness.
One Last Thing …
I do like the vinyl material though – I expected it to be kind of squeaky and weird, but I would try another harness that is not leather in my quest.
In going over the Sugarbutch tag for “harness”, I noticed there are some harnesses I’ve reviewed but haven’t posted about here yet, like these two:
This arrived in my inbox recently:
I’m transgendered so when I strap although some of the cocks are tempting to buy, I’m not very comfortable with unnatural colors and shapes. I was wondering if you could point me in the direction of a good sized, nice material, and realistic looking cock and a nice and masculine harness. I’ve seen some on your blogs that sound good but i wanted a more personal opinion from someone that actually knows what they’re talking about.
And this isn’t the first time someone has asked me this kind of thing. I write about cocks & harnesses all the time here, but sometimes I think it’s probably a challenge to figure out what it is I’m really using, and what I use often.
So here’s what I wrote back:
I’m glad to throw some ideas your way. Sorry to say, you’re going to have to invest some money in a really nice cock. The ones that are realistic and high-quality are freakin’ expensive. But, the good news is, there are some really good ones available. I totally know what you mean about unnatural colors and shapes, they make me uncomfortable too.
The #1 absolute best realistic cocks out there are by Vixen Creations, their line called Vixskin. The material is some sort of silicone (so it is completely 100% sterilizable) that is made to feel like “cyberskin,” which is the most realistic material on the market. It’s a little bit squishy but still hard. Feels *great*, I highly recommend it. They have lots of different sizes (my #1 very favorite is the Maverick (Babeland calls it the Rodeo Rick) that is 7″x2″) and they all come in chocolate, caramel, or vanilla colors, depending on how light or dark you want the flesh tone to be.
The other great thing about Vixen is that they have a lifetime guarantee. That doesn’t cover “misuse” but if it does break down, they’ll replace it. They’re all in the $100 range, so you might have to save up a bit, but they’ll literally last you a lifetime and they are so worth it.
Most of the sex positive, feminist, queer sex toy shops carry Vixskin, like Good Vibes, Babeland, Blowfish, etc. You might want to actually go to one of those places and check out their sizes, hold them in your hands, all that, to feel what feels most like *yours*.
The Joque & the Jaguar are not *my* personal favorites, actually, mostly because I really prefer the one-strap harnesses, though it seems like most people don’t. I like the commando, and also the Jaguar G, which is the G-string version of the same Jaguar. the leather is SO beautiful and soft and buttery and I just love the design, super comfortable and incredibly hot. Same as with the cocks, it’ll be about a $100 investment, but Aslan Leather (and some of the other nice harness makers too) come with a lifetime guarantee, like Vixen does, so the investment is totally worth it.
Got a question for me about cocks, harnesses, strapping it on, or something else? Email me – aspiringstud [at] gmail.com – or leave a comment and I’ll get back to you as well as I can.