"Kinderwhore was an image used by a handful of American female punk rock bands in the early/mid 90’s.Exactly who invented the Kinderwhore image is up for debate, though it is widely accepted that Kat Bjelland of Babes in Toyland was the first to define it and Courtney Love of Hole was the first to popularise it"
Often tied in with the riot grrrl movement though not exclusively, kinderwhore’s look of thrift store baby doll dresses and garish red smeared lipstick was also a huge influence on what was soon to be termed the grunge era.
When Courtney herself stated that the look was inspired by Christina Amphlett, singer of the 1980's rock group The Divinyls. Kat retorted the 1956 film Baby Doll had inspired her. "Baby Doll", portrayed by actress Carroll Baker, was a luscious blonde, around 20 years old, who laid in a crib-like bed she has long grown out of, wearing baby doll pajamas, while curled up with her thumb in her mouth. Many years later, Courtney Love and Kat Bjelland would continue to argue over who had come up with the idea of the kinderwhore look. Kat claimed that Love had stolen it from her back in San Francisco. The pair's tumultuous on again off again friendship and many similarities, made it difficult to prove either way who came up with it first.
Kat Bjelland best defined kinderwhore by stating it consisted of torn, ripped Baby Doll dresses, thrift store negligees, or slips worn with slutty make-up and high leather boots. The supposed enticing girly image worked in contrast to Bjelland's small frame and extremely aggressive screaming style. Yet when worn by Love 5'10, (towering over the 5’3 Bjelland) it looked more like an amazon-sized doll that had grown out of its' frilly "Best Sunday Dress" and ripped it to shreds.
After hearing Kat’s claims that the movie Baby Doll was the inspiration for the kinderwhore look, Courtney penned songs “Babydoll” and “Good Sister/Bad Sister”, which both appeared on Hole’s first album, “Pretty On The Inside.” The songs were supposedly written about Kat and featured lines like. "better burn that dress sister” and “here you come sucking my energy /and you suck it up right off the street.” The feud between Love and Bjelland over “kinderwhore” escalated in 1993, when Babes In Toyland’s song "Bruise Violet", from the album “Fontanelle”, seemed like it was written as a wholesale character assassination of Courtney. Lyrics like, “You fucking bitch well I hope your insides rot * Liar * Liar * Liar.” only intensified speculation on the song’s true meaning.
To add insult to injury the video for “Bruise Violet” depicted a woman who looked a lot like Courtney dressed in a Baby Doll dress (the same as Bjelland's) stalking the Babes In Toyland singer throughout the video. In 1994 the final blow came from Love when she released the track “Violet” off Hole’s second album “Live Through This”, as a response to Kat's "Bruise Violet. The song’s chorus read, “Go on, take everything, take everything I want you to.”, soon after the song hit radio the kinderwhore lyric feud slowly subsided.
In the wake of 1995, the kinderwhore look quickly spread across the world and was worn by many other female artists just as fierce but not as blonde as Bjelland or Love. Other women and grrl bands from the US that adopted the kinderwhore look were, LA’s Kim Shattuck of The Muffs, (original Sugar Baby Doll member) Jennifer Finch from L7, Seattle’s 7 Year Bitch, Bratmobile , NYC’s the Lunachicks, Olympia, Washington’s riot grrrl band Bikini Kill ,while Florida’s Jessicka from Jack Off Jill and Tina and Susan from San Francisco’s Switchblade Symphony took a more Goth approach to the look. Across the pond in the UK, bands like Fluffy, Huggy Bear and Daisy Chainsaw’s Katie Jane Garside wore their Baby Doll dresses with pride. The look even went as far as Japan where it was adopted by the band Shonen Knife. The all-female, Japanese, alternative rock trio found some success in the United States. The band cited 1960's girl groups as their main influences but it was the woman who created the kinderwhore look who gave them their style.
After the riot grrrl movement and grunge became passe, the kinderwhore look died out very quickly soon after. Kat Bjelland took a leave of absence from music after Babes In Toyland broke up to have her son Henry in 1999. The new mom adopted a new darker shorter hairstyle and less childlike/ slutty attire. Also in 1999, Courtney Love moved into acting. When Love returned to the world of music for Hole's last album "Celebrity Skin", she had dropped her controversial kinderwhore image and adopted a sleeker, more efficient, high fashion look, though controversy remains a mainstay in all others areas of her life.
ALL facts taken with permission from:
"Kinderwhore was an image used by a handful of American female punk rock bands in the early/mid 90's.Exactly who invented the Kinderwhore image is up for debate, though it is widely accepted that Kat Bjelland of Babes in Toyland was the first to define it and Courtney Love of Hole was the first to popularise it" taken directly from:Wikipedia: