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A fetish model is a model who models fetish clothing or devices that augment their body in a fetish-like manner or in fetishistic situations, though they may not work exclusively in that form of modeling.
Many fetish models display what are termed fetish fashions, which are clothing styles that considered extreme and provocative, designed to elicit a strong emotional reaction or desire on the part of the observer. Such clothing range from exotic stylized bathing suits to extreme costuming including body armor and sci-fi fantasy suits.
Fetish modeling may involve bondage, body modification, fetish photography and exotic glamour photography as well as sexual fantasy costuming (i.e. maid's outfits, nurses, etc.). Fetish models may model for photography, and appear at BDSM fairs and parties.
Types of fetish models
Fetish modelling covers a wide range of fetishes, including those involving bondage, latex, corsets, even wedgies, tattoo/body piercing, shoes, thin fetishism, shibari, and Nyotaimori / food. Fetishes may also involve body parts, such as breasts, navel, feet, and so on.
Fetish models are usually considered to be in a different category to gothic or alternative models, who are usually far more niche specific. Fetish models may only involve themselves in the overall aesthetic aspects rather than work directly with sex and sexuality. Fetish modelling is usually considered to be a part of the adult industry due to its popular perception as an "adult only" appreciation. However, in recent times, many aspects of the fetish fashion market have been incorporated and accepted into mainstream fashion whereby fashion creators will directly use exotic fabrics such as latex or sheer instead of cotton or wool for their creations.
There have been several notable performers and producers of both the bondage and fetish area who have attained mainstream notability. The most recognized is the 1950s bondage model and pin-up girl, Bettie Page, who posed for photographer Irving Klaw for mail-order photographs and was subsequently featured in Playboy.  She was the first famous bondage model.
In the 1960s the popular British TV program, The Avengers incorporated much fetish costuming for their lead female performers beginning with Honor Blackman and including Diana Rigg's famous leather catsuits and leotards as well as Tara King's continual thigh-length boots and shoulder length leather gloves.
Fetish models may run personal adult pay websites and are featured on fetish adult pay sites.
There are also fetish fashion designers. Most of these designers employ fetish models for their clothing line. Fetish fashion shows are hosted several times a year, including Vex, The Baroness, Skintwo, and House of Harlot.
The SIGNY awards were awarded each year between 2000 and 2005 (except 2002) to the bondage models voted as the best of that year. The SIGNY award winners have been:
- 2000: Eve Ellis, runners up Ashley Renee, Andrea Neal
- 2001: Ashley Renee, runners up Andrea Neal, Eve Ellis
- 2003: Jasmine Sinclair, runners up Amber Michaels, Ashley Renee
- 2004: Jenni Lee, runners up Jewell Marceau, Emily Marilyn AKA:Molly Matthews
- 2005: Jewell Marceau, runners up Ashley Renee, Christina Carter
- Bondage rigger
- Japanese bondage for a list of Japanese bondage models
- Nyotaimori (sometimes involves bondage)
- Total enclosure
- Uniform fetishism
- Essex, Karen, and James L. Swanson, Bettie Page: The Life of a Pin-Up Legend. Los Angeles: General Publishing Group, 1996. ISBN 1-881649-62-8
- Foster, Richard, The Real Bettie Page: The Truth About the Queen of the Pinups. Secaucus, N.J.: Carol Publishing Group/Birch Lane Press, 1997. ISBN 1-55972-432-3