Ogh..I get so nostalgic going through all these collages! I really can't believe we've had all these amazing years of Diva-Fierce and fashion and awards and memories. All the feels, loves, all the feels!
Since we've moved to the new hosting site, I've been trying to keep the history of Diva-Fierce alive and recorded for newbies to catch up on and goldies to take a hop, skip and a trip down memory lane with. I don't know who here at the site came up with the original concept of the Ring Gear Awards, but it was -and is!- an amazing fit with our nexus of wrestling and fashion; gear is the couture of the ring! And we're the only site to consistently, year after year, give great gear the call-outs and podium placings it so richly deserves, which makes the RGAs a very special and unique part of the Diva-Fierce lexicon. So, let's strap in and take a look ...all the way back to the first days of fierce when we were just a cute, tiny, fledgling website with nothing to our name but passion and a dream :)
Some of the who's and what gear's sadly seem to be lost in the deeps of time and hard drive, but what I do know is that when the site opened back in 2011, the Ring Gear Awards were one of our first features. We ran them in Sept or Oct, literally a month or two after our incarnation. The following year, we backed them up to August, where they have remained ever since, a staple of the last hot, sexy days of summer break. Among the since vanished pieces of info are the names of two of 2011's nominees. Kelly/Barbie was one of the three chosen divas and Angelina was one of the Knockouts triumvirate. The two ladies who claimed the third spots will hopefully forgive me or be patient with me until such time as the hard drive gives up it's buried. The winners, however, are indelible: Maryse - who clearly has been slaying couture habitually for years - and Velvet - who was only off the podium once in all the years of the RGAs. Maryse experimented with pretty much every possible genre, from glam sequins to camo to amazing color and print combos - all of it done with her trademark stellar fashion sense. She was one of the first to bring the "third piece" to gear, adding trenches and dusters to her ensemble for her walk to the ring long before it was a trend among other divas. Velvet's gear was all about the sexy. It grew out of her own streetwise persona and a further development of her Beautiful People looks (hence the general reliance on pink and black). Remember those kabooty-shorts+garter pants? Perhaps the more appropriate question is: could you ever forget them? ;) I bet they still haunt your dreams ;) Simple and seductive was the way Vel liked it and her looks never failed to deliver!
In 2012, it was Rosita, Brooke and Gail who rocked our worlds while they wrestled. Rosita's push-up bra and shorts combos always brought a big pop of color to the ring. Designed under the theory that one should never let an asset go to waste, they highlighted all Rosita's curves, as well a her best moves. Brooke was the Knockouts newbie and was making her presence felt via bold red, white and blue gear, accented with stars in various iterations. The repeated theme made a huge ...impact (sorry, not sorry. Puns, good and bad = my thing), as well as being dramatic and HOT. Meanwhile, Gail was experimenting with various shades of gorgeous lace in an incredibly unique short-sleeved, mock neck silhouette. The lace stood out as being an unusually feminine fabric for the ring, albeit one that was tantalizingly seductive. Gail took it to new heights, with gear not only done is classic black and fiery red, but cool, lingerie-esque blues and angelic white.
Over on the divas side, Kelly/Barbie scored the top spot with her hallmark push-up bra. The look had been a staples of hers for years, but in this final iteration - paired with kabooty shorts, done in saturated metallic hues and often accented with crystals and a glittering belt, it reached the heights of our wildest dreams. Everything came together flawlessly for an iconic look that will be forever remembered as her signature style. Eve had a signature style of her own - a sweetheart-necklined cami that was "her" style almost from day one of her career. A very few minor tweaks took it to this level of perfection: a chevron-fronted gem, accented with side cutouts, strappy details and sometimes, a keyhole halter! Magnificent colors ranging from cobalt to emerald to melon, or crave-worthy metallic made her gear into style we salivated over! Even in 2012, Natalya was living the pink-and-black life! Halter tops+pants were her silhouette of choice. The designs of 2012 represented a maturation of her pre-Divas of Doom style. Where she had previously worked with bright neons, she now metamorphosized the look into sophisticated animal prints and steely, sleek metallics. The Queen of Harts certainly won ours!
2013 brought a new face to our KO's count up: the fabulous Taryn, who caught our attention right out of the box with her high-crossed halter design. Not only did she bring bright colors to the ring, but she mixed them in upbeat, entrancing combinations that made her one of our super-faves! Brooke was back, too, bringing deep gemstone colors to her trademark silhouette. We loved the new teals and plums just as much as the red, white and blue! The year also saw the return of Velvet, who proved her trademark look was as amazing as ever, killing us softly with wide-scoopneck tops and TBP-inspired skirts, done in her famous color combo and accented with appropriate words (or slogans ;) ) of choice.
New faces were also appearing in WWE, as the Funkadactyls made the grade with sequins, sequins everywhere! There was no escaping all that fab flash, as the Naomi-Cameron duo glammed the wrestling world up in eye-catching shades of every variety, including a very memorable highlighter yellow. Their silhouettes varied, but the shine never failed! Alicia Fox also smashed into the RGAs with a design that I had previously vowed never to love. Foxy made me eat my words - no condiments required. I had never been a fan of skirts for wrestling, considering them too frilly and impractical. Silly me. Foxy's design included a modernized bustle that added beautiful and super-flirty movement to her look. She did the design in several devastatingly delicious colors, a delightfully dangerous skull version and a couture-worthy sailor-inspired iteration. I was a slave to her look long before she finished all those fancy variations! Before sporty fearlessness and Brie Mode, the Bellas were already taking the couture side of the ring by storm, in super glam strappy Britney-esque one-pieces and mad sexy bustier tops, done with everything from all-over sequins to pinstripes and ruffles. The twins have always had a penchant for stopping us in our tracks by bringing ultra-fresh, divinely fierce fashion ideas on to the ring ramp. 2013 was so varied, so jaw-dropping, so overwhelmingly awesome, we just had to raise a glass (or three) to their willingness to take ring ensembles into uncharted territory.
2014 brought so much incredible ring gear to our screen that we had to break with tradition and give nods to not three, but four, ladies from each promotion, via an honorable mention. Summer's keyhole-peekaboo design took that honor on the divas side; I believe it was Taryn who did so for the Knockouts, as she added glamorous metallics and crystals to her RGA-winning look from the year before. Also rocking our universe was Gail's further eplorations of lace, including new colors, a high-necked sleeveless silhouette and a truly crave-worthy deep-v+sheer inset+side cutout one piece that had us raving! She literally could do no wrong. The Beautiful People were back, and in full super-sexy regalia. The pink and black got new additions of fringe, leather, spikes of yellow, decadent (and fun!) colored fur. It was just..totally TBP, totally mind-blowing, impossible not to love :). We also saw Madison add sultry lace-up details to her trademark halter top..and an asymmetrical skirt! As the Queen Bee took flight, she added further regal details: metallic piping, dashes of studs, sexy mesh. She kept us constantly at attention, anticipating each new twist, each new thrilling piece of passamenterie. Paige's dark, grunge style was slaying us on the WWE scene. It was so bold, so edgy, so unabashedly rebellious that it got nothin' but love from our corner! Her gear conveyed exactly what she was: a brassy rocker chick with an attitude. And, it brought a tough, take-no-prisoners attitude back to ring gear that we hadn't seen in some time..and hadn't even known we were missing, until Paige smashed down our doors and reminded us. Eva Marie also won our hearts with her seductive triad-keyhole silhouette. It isn't everyday that we see a design that brand, spanking new and this one make us sit up and take notice! She cycled through every classic color in existence: red, black, white and this design was killer in every one of them. By the time she got around to emerald green, royal blue, crystal accents and fierce hardware, we were goners! Nikki and Brie jettisoned glam for sporty girl mode and the plastics n' plaid combos rebirthed out world. They were so clean, so straightforward, so athletic - so perfectly appropriate for the wrestling in. They also brought the athleisure trend off the runways and into the ring, something we always applaud. The Bellas put on notice: it was time for fashion to get physical! And that got them into the top 3 of our 2014 RGAs :)
Due to multiple decisions being made regarding the site's content and continuance, there were no Ring Gear Awards in 2015. I am therefore pleased to announce that they. Will. Be. BACK in 2016! They'll be in their rightful place, as the highlight of August. So, sit tight, GearHeads - we share your love and we got ya covered!
Welcome to the place where wrestling & fashion join hands. #BeInspired #LoveFashion May the Fierce be with you! ;) Peace & Glitter!
Brie: shoe-lover :) fashion-lover and generally glamorous semi-dork
Photos used for criticism and comment under US Copyright Act Section 107.