Saturday, 8 August 2009

Sex in the Churchyard

Above: Leo (left) and Jim

Leo Belicha and Jim Warboy’s new all-night, every Friday club Caligula became my end of the week hangout joint when it opened in June. Pretty much whatever else I do on a Friday I usually pass by there for a couple of hours between midnight and 4am. The tunes are fairly eclectic: last week Jim was dropping some great bassy Italo but there are always a team if guest DJs playing anything from Kylie and Beyonce to new electro.

Above: Gabriel Gettman (left) and Bunny Clarke

The crowd’s pretty eclectic too: a polysexual mix of all 18-48 year olds from all walks of life. Leo and Jim are keen for it to be a meeting place. They’ve left the restaurant tables and chairs so their punters have plenty of room to take those looks they’ve been giving each other on the dance floor a stage further and get to know each other a little better. Leo actually cites one of his aims as providing a place where people can have sex. I’ve already seen some couples roll out the doors and take advantage of The Bathhouse’s secluded churchyard location to help Leo achieve this goal.

But despite Leo’s disdain for overly posey tamely-mannered party-goers (‘come and trash your Margiela’ he enthuses us in his invites), the place has also been attracting more than it’s fair share of fashion-conscious dressers. Of these, over the past few weeks, I’ve been most excited by the creations of Gabriel and Bunny. This creative couple have been taking my breath away with their outfits which mix designer with home-made items.

The small glimpse into their lives afforded by the exchange of a few words in noisy places and scanning their facebook pages has got my wondering how these creations come about…Are they a super-rich aristocratic couple who live in some far off castle and employ a team of minions to craft their outfits, descending on EC1 each week on their horse drawn carriages? Are they fashion sorcerers who spend their weeks dreaming up new spells to stitch together fresh outfits leaving us spellbound each week? Do they float down on a cloud, fly in on their brooms or are they teleported from some far off fashion-forward planet to show us the future?

I’ll be finding out the answer to these and other questions when I catch up with them for an interview soon. Also, look out for interviews with Jim, Leo and the other drivers of my favourite East London trashpoints on Bitching and Junk Food soon...

Meantime, here are a few more shots from the last few weeks at Caligula.

Above: Brazilian DJ Lara Gerin is expected back in the DJ cage in September.
Below: I love Gage's eclectic looks: industrial/post apocalypse meets bondage softened down with occasional womenswear accessories.

Above: (from Left) performer/artist Alex Moon-Age in a characteristically colourful and retro outfit. LCF and CSM students are tirelessly coming up with highly original home-customised creations and are not afraid to use their faces as canvases.
Below: Jim Warboy flicks Jodie Harsh's switches.

Above: A well wrapped and layered reveller smiles with his Victorian-inspired kitout.
Below: These guys also make me trip with their dramatic outfits. A mature balance of 60s left-bank and Magic Circle theatricals. (From left: Noah Crutchfield, Kosmo Sang and Lash Day)

Below: Occasional door whore James Ng drapes uses lots of draping of colourful flags to give an original spin on the Japanese black draping trend.

On the slate...


  1. I'm there! When? Where? Is it a gay place?

  2. It's at 5 Bichopsgate churchyard, down the lane below Liverpool Street station every Friday. Generally it's free till midnight but this is changing all the time as it's getting busier.

    Look up and join the Caligula Facebook page!

    It's as mixed as God made the world...