At ‘Saltburn’ Party, Bathwater Is an Acquired Taste


On Friday night at 3 Dollar Bill, a queer club in the East Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, partygoers danced and sang along to early 2000s hits by Fergie, Justin Timberlake and, of course, Sophie Ellis-Bextor whose “Murder on the Dancefloor” is currently having a renaissance.

The theme of the night was the movie “Saltburn,” which, based on the number of attendees who arrived dressed in costume, is quickly garnering cult status. The crowd cheered as the D.J. played “Untouched” by the Veronicas. It was like hopping in a time machine to 2007. (Well, a 2007 in which everyone owns an iPhone and has a working knowledge of the words “novel coronavirus.”)

The film, a psychological thriller set in the early aughts, is as freaky as it is aesthetically rich. Come for the sex and the murders and the mind games, stay for the long, gorgeous shots of the debauched lives of the British upper class on summer holiday.

The same tone set the mood for the evening’s festivities. There were “bathwater” cocktails — made with pineapple juice, rum and coconut milk for extra, soapy froth — for sale at the bar. (The drink tasted fine, even if its inspiration, a scene in the film where Barry Keoghan laps up Jacob Elordi’s leftover bathwater, is perhaps less than appetizing.)

Chloe Philips, one of the party’s hosts known online as Chlomosexual, roamed the scene in a plaid miniskirt and a chain mail headpiece. Several other guests also took their cues from suits of armor while getting dressed. Plenty of pairs of antlers and wings were on full display as attendees queued outside the club waiting to let loose their early-2000s alter egos. Many of the guests were in their early 20s and ready to experience that particular moment in cultural history for the very first time.

Amid the merriment, partygoers discussed their outfit inspirations, Y2K nostalgia and, of course, that much-publicized bathtub scene.


Creative director

Lives in: Crown Heights

Tell me about your outfit. I’m the bathtub. I made these little handles that spin and a little faucet in the front. I was so worried there were going to be other bathtubs, but I haven’t seen any yet.

What did you think about that bathtub scene? Well … there’s a reason why I’m the bathtub.


Buyer

Lives in: Ocean Hill

Where did you get your outfit? It was all thrifted, except for the shoes. I’ve got a hole in my Converse.

Who are you trying to emulate tonight? The only brown person in the main cast.

Farleigh? That is his name. I loved the movie, but I don’t know anyone’s name.


Client adviser at Tiffany & Company

Lives in: Hell’s Kitchen

How did you decide what to wear tonight? My friend — it’s his birthday — lent me his bathtub. But otherwise, I just picked a cute outfit. The top is from the Mugler H&M collaboration. I slept overnight to be the first group in the store.

I obviously have to ask you about that bathtub scene. I sat there with my partner and I was like, “Is this arousing or disturbing?” It’s a little bit of both.


Lives in: Bushwick

Tell me about your shirt. I wanted to emulate Farleigh. I had to copy him.

This shirt has an important cultural history that predates “Saltburn.” Are you familiar with it? Of course!


Flight attendant

Lives in: Bushwick

What brought you out tonight? It’s my birthday and I’ve watched “Saltburn” probably seven times now.

What about it makes you keep coming back? The cinematography is really gorgeous.


Filmmaker

Lives in: Bushwick

Where did you find this gown? I went to Beacon’s Closet about three hours ago and found this wedding dress. I was like, “I am Elspeth.”

Who do you think got married in this? I don’t know, I think it’s a young bride. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s, like, this 21-year-old girl who took her mom’s wedding dress and got married and then obviously got divorced, like, last year.

Lives in: Upper East Side

Where did you get this suit? I texted my mother and was like “I need this outfit ASAP. Please make it and overnight it for me.” And she said, “OK, yeah, I love my gay son.”

Where did she overnight it from? New Jersey.


Theater director and barista

Lives in: Bedford-Stuyvesant

I love your horns. I am trying to be a slay version of the Minotaur statue from the movie.

Are you a Shakespeare fan? Absolutely.

What’s the most overrated Shakespeare? “Romeo and Juliet.” It’s good but everyone does it and it’s kind of boring.


Visual merchandiser for Moschino

Lives in: Queens

Where did you get your wings? The wings I ordered from Bihbi, the same company that made Felix’s wings for the movie.

What about the rest of your outfit? All new. The jeans are probably, like, six hours old. They are from American Eagle. It kind of fits into the early-2000s aesthetic.

And how old were you during that era? Six or 7.


Works for a textile designer; and photographer, hairstylist and stripper

Live in: East Williamsburg and Bedford-Stuyvesant

What was your hair inspiration tonight?

PILAR VIOLET: I was making the wings from that one Galliano show with Kate Moss, but I was doing it all very last minute so I just decided to go with the feathers on top of the hair.

What about this is “Saltburn” to you?

VIOLET: I love Barry Keoghan because he’s a sexy little freak. Jacob Elordi is hot, but I love a weird little freak.

How about your outfit?

HANNAH PINSON: I was inspired by Venetia in the film. She has so much money but she does not know how to do her makeup or how to do her hair. Half of my makeup today was just wiping off black eyeliner.



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