Twice a year, the Oxford Mountaineers give their harnesses and stinky shoes a rest for an evening, donning instead black tie for a three-course meal, concluding with the ever-so-civilised consumption of port.
The official dress code is “climber’s interpretation of black tie”, which may to many mean “any somewhat formal variation of black tie with which you, the climber, feels comfortable”, but to me means quite literally, Climber’s Interpretation of Black Tie. This reading has led me to make necklaces and handbags out of carabiners, to belt a maxi dress with prusik cord, and, most recently, to fashion a crown out of some extra rope.
I topped my makeshift fascinator with a Crown & Glory bow and added clip-on cherry earrings, a furry thing from the Frock Swap, my FCUK little black dress, my Kate Spade handbag, and polka dot panda heels.
One other climber participated in theme-dressing, although he claims that his maillon cuff links were due to forgetting to bring a more conventional pair to university.