There is, of course, another way in which black ribbons and bows are sometimes used for an equally provocative effect: when they adorn the lovely neck of a fair damsel.
In From Russia with Love
(1957), the finest of Ian Fleming's James Bond novels, (which also translated into the best Bond film ever made,) 007 becomes ensnared by Fleming's most irresistible, most girlish vixen, the Russian agent Tatiana Romanova.
In the novel's famous seduction scene, Bond finds Tatiana languishing indolently in the bed of his hotel room. 007 is caught off guard, and asks the Russian beauty,
"What have you got on?"
She pulled the sheet a fraction lower to show a quarter-inch black velvet ribbon round her neck. "This."
Bond looked down into the teasing blue eyes, now wide as if asking if the ribbon was inadequate . . .
Just how instrumental that particular bewitching detail, that black ribbon, is to Bond's entrapment by this angelic foe is revealed later in the book, when 007 berates himself for having succumbed to Tatiana's soft charms. Angry at his own naivete, Bond imagines what his Soviet foes must have said to themselves, when setting him up for his conquest:
"Comrades, it is easy with a vain fool like this Bond. Watch him take the bait. You will see. I tell you he is a fool. All Englishmen are fools." And Tatiana--the lure. The darling lure. Bond thought of their first night. The black stockings and the velvet ribbon . . .
The image of the black ribbon against Tatiana's fair skin remains fixed in 007's mind, even when her foreign allegiance has been revealed.
And it just so happens that, thanks to MXM, we have an example of a plus-size model, (and a blue-eyed beauty like Tatania,) Kailee O'Sullivan, exhibiting the irresistible draw of this fashion accessory. This is not quite Kailee's best MXM image, but it still captures the feminine enchantment of a ribbon-and-bow combination.
Whether they are used as hair adornments, or to draw attention to a vixen's lovely neck, ribbons and bows are singularly alluring items of feminine dress--especially as exhibited on timeless beauties such as Kelsey and Kailee. It would be wonderful to see these accessories become wardrobe staples in the coming season.