This is a written adaptation of my 24/7 High Protocol Dynamics class.
I always begin this class with the example from this post.
I enter Mistress’ office to talk about something. I wait for her to acknowledge me, silent until she does so, not barging in already talking. She’s doing something on the computer. When she does look up a moment later and asks, “What’s up?” I kneel next to her, trying to be graceful about it, lowering to both knees at once without my hands. There’s a recliner right behind me, but I’m not allowed to sit on the furniture in her presence or to ask to do so; she grants the permission pretty much only for meals. We’re already talking as I do so, position not noted.
We talk. After a while, my legs are going numb. I’m to hold the specific position until I ask and get permission otherwise (that, I am allowed to ask for). I’m kneeling, sitting back on my heels, knees apart (big toes crossed, right over left), hands behind my back (hands clasped, thumbs crossed, both right over left), back straight. Subconscious by now except for straightening my back now and then. At whatever natural brief lull in the conversation, I ask, “May I stretch?” and she says, “You may,” as almost always.
Usually, permission grants (or denials), are answered with, “Thank you, Mistress,” but for ones that take a matter of seconds to complete, it’s waived, so I shift slightly and the conversation quickly resumes without it that time, though it may be sprinkled elsewhere in the conversation. Orders, answered with, “Yes, Mistress,” have the same exception built in for practicality.
When we’re about wrapping up talking, I ask as required to before I ask if I may go, “Anything else I can do?”
“You may get me coffee.”
An order (intention, not phrasing, which matters when deciding to respond with the thank you or yes) like that counts as permission to leave, so I don’t ask that part, but I do say, “Yes, Mistress,” stand, again trying to have hands free grace about it, and offer a quick curtsy, the final part of the little leaving ritual, head down, thumbs and forefingers grasping the skirt like hem of my long shirt—which is a uniform, part of the only, really specific outfit I’m allowed to wear, but looks like pretty normal attire—and placing the ball of my right foot behind my left heel for the quick little bob down and up, grab the drink, and exit.
I bring her the refill—exactly as she likes it—and this time she simply says in acknowledgement, “You may go,” cutting the need to ask about anything else or permission to leave, so I curtsy again as required and exit.
I bring attention to a few factors here: that just being specific about preferences can create a protocol, the protocols you see are carefully refined for practicality, that there are a lot of little touches of protocol that add up to the big picture. That there’s a lot of unnoted habit going on here, that it becomes natural, and that there are still huge bits of conversation here. It’s a dynamic, not a show.
Then, we move on to some specific categories.
There’s a lot to consider when choosing an s-type’s uniform.
There are two categories I get into here. One, how to start thinking of ideas and the general look of a uniform, what to sit down and start writing on paper. How to go from blank page to a concept. Secondly, the nitty gritty practicalities as you start to refine those ideas.
How to Think of It
- Detail, or level of detail. Here meaning, how specific do you want to get? Are you looking for a true uniform (note the uni, one) or more of a dress code? Think of schools here. Some have uniforms (that classic plaid skirt look you have to buy from a specific retailer, say), while others have a dress code (no spaghetti straps, skirts have to be a certain length). Some have “standard student attire”, somewhere in the middle (a polo shirt in red, white, or black, and bottoms in black or khaki). You can use a hex code or “something blue”. It’s up to you. But an important first step.
- Are you going to define it in terms of what’s in, or what’s out? In terms of what is allowed, or what isn’t? A dress code might say things like no pants, or it might say only skirts. If something isn’t specified, is it assumed “in” or “out”? For example, if you never mention socks, does that mean socks aren’t to be worn, or that they’re the s-type’s choice?
- By category. Think of The Sims or dress up games where you choose different outfits. Everyday, pajamas, athletic, formal, swimwear, outerwear—the list goes on. Start thinking in terms of those categories. Are you only concerned with standard day wear (and maybe night wear) you’ll make exceptions to, or do you want to come up with something for every occasion?
- By item. Now think of each item of clothing in those categories you’re concerned with. Socks, undergarments, shirts, pants, shoes, jackets, so on.
- Big ideas: what does it represent? What does this overall uniform mean to you, and why do you want your s-type (or why do you want) to wear one? What kind of impressions are you trying to evoke with it?
- Going with that: you can play with gender and role here. If you’re in a 1950’s household dynamic, maybe you want to play into a vintage femme look. If you’re going for the Victorian butler, you might go for formal and masculine. If you do any gender play within your dynamic (sissification, etc.) this can be a huge factor here. Also consider your “submissive archetype”—if you’re into age play, maybe you add a bit of childish whimsy (high socks, skirts, pastel colors, fun accessories, pigtails). So on.
- In general, consider formality. The uniform should fit the average situation you find yourselves in and also the level of formality you are trying to evoke. In a high protocol dynamic, even if you’re not going for total formalwear, you might not want cutoff jeans and tank tops and flashy colors. But, if you’re into the idea of your s-type as more of the grunge work servant wearing overly practical attire in contrast to your more formal or business look, that’s another consideration.
- In general, you should consider the contrast. What do you wear, typically, and how do you want your s-type’s look to compare? To match a little, to play up dynamic unity? Stark contrast to highlight roles? Consider the choices pointed out above and the ones you make for yourself as well.
- Finally here, ownership marks. If your s-type has a collar or other symbol of ownership, do you want it prominently displayed with pride? Or perhaps able to be hidden in public situations if it’s not so vanilla friendly? If you’re moving from one prominent ownership mark to a uniform, consider matching it in color or theme.
A lot of the above is big ideas or places to start. Now, for the reality checks.
- Approval. Does your s-type need approval or permission as part of the uniform code, and are you sure they can consistently get it? If they need your approval every morning, what happens if you’re sleeping in and they need to get to work? If they need your permission to take on or off any item of clothing, are they going to constantly text you for permission to take their jacket on and off when the weather shifts? You might grant certain permissions by item or situation. For example, maintaining a vanilla cover. What if a vanilla family member wants them to try on a gift or insists on lending them their visor on a sunny day, and they can’t exactly excuse themselves to ask you? Approval needs are something that can be extremely fulfilling and extremely easy to run into issues with. Choose wisely.
- Is each needed item easy to acquire and maintain? Does it ship quickly and consistently? Is it within your budgets? (And, whose responsibility is it, if you have separate finances?) Is it easy to mend, can it be tailored, is it simple to clean? Or are you (or the s-type) willing to put in the work on the uniform itself? Is it durable?
- Sizing. Is it available in your s-type’s size, and is it available in say, a size up and a size down from that, especially if it can’t be tailored? What happens if they gain or lose a few pounds—would the uniform have to change?
- External obligations. The vanilla world. Jobs or other obligations with their own dress codes. Is the uniform suited for these situations, or are those going to be separate categories? Maybe you can pick out undergarments even when they’re going to a job with its own outer uniform. If you want your s-type naked around the house, do they wear “whatever” when your mom drops in, or is there a clothed uniform for that?
- Features. By this I mostly mean pockets. Consider practical needs like this and if the uniform provides it or how you will work around it. Is there a waistband things can be clipped to instead, maybe?
- Access. Many people on the left side of the slash enjoy easy access to their s-type’s body. Is the uniform a pain to get on and off? Can you easily slip a hand under their clothes, if that’s desired? If you want better access, consider prioritizing looser items, fewer layers, dresses or skirts, and pull on items without buckles, buttons, clasps, zippers, etc.
- Is the outfit generally practical for whatever your s-type does all day? Whether they have a job outside the home or spend their time on your housekeeping, can they move around in their outfit? Walk a decent distance? Get up and down stairs, and in and out of cars? The little things. You most likely shouldn’t prioritize fashion over their duties, especially in a service dynamic. Is it comfortable enough? Maybe this isn’t your first priority, but if they’re going to really wear it 24/7, it should probably be somewhere on the list, at least to the point that it’s not a major distraction. Going with that, is it suited to the weather where you live? Visit? Consider seasonal uniforms or optional layers.
- Non-clothing items. Consider what the uniform covers when things start to get iffy on if something’s a clothing item or not. Putting their hair up? Dyeing or cutting it? Makeup? Accessories? Shaving? Length/color of their nails? Medical devices? Other beauty products? Tattoos? Piercings? Basic hygiene? You might consider “visible” modifications, but also other items like no strong scents or use this scent in particular.
How Mine Works (From Our Contract)
For Hannah’s daily uniform, she will wear her assigned black and red plaid top, black knee socks, black leggings, black bra, black underwear, collar, wedding ring (left ring finger or pinned to her leggings), and watch (pinned to leggings). She will keep her pager clipped to her leggings (she may also keep her phone there if desired; headphones are generally permitted). Shoes, if worn, will be the assigned black boots. She may choose her own jackets and bags. Masks and gloves are permitted as needed. Hannah will sleep naked, except for her collar/leash and wedding ring.
Her clothes should generally look neat, clean, in good repair, and fit well. She will bathe regularly and shave any body hair each time she showers, keep her bangs at a reasonable length, and keep her nails short. Kate will inspect Hannah’s job of shaving immediately after each time she showers, in Inspection Position. Her hair will be left down.
Hannah may add, remove, or change out uniform clothing items without prior permission if it is necessary to maintain a vanilla facade. She will notify Kate of it as soon as reasonable. Hannah will ask Kate’s permission before changing her underwear if she is doing so due to soiling via arousal, or message her a notification of doing so if she is unavailable. Any other visible changes must be approved.
Things to consider when building a slave position repertoire.
- Integration. Most of our slave positions tie into a specific point in our routine. Look at pre-existing rituals you can incorporate positions into. Is there a place where a specific position would be practical? A time they should automatically assume that position? Is there a position the s-type assumes again and again? Codify it.
- Detail. Just like with uniforms, what level of detail to you want to get into with your positions? Placement of fingers and toes, or placement of limbs?
- Symbolism. Figure out what different positions—and pieces of positions—mean to you, and what you want to evoke with them. Hands clasped behind the back might give a position a more military look, while the wrists crossed might evoke the idea of binding, while others like the palms up look of offering. Kneeling with the knees apart is a look found in Gor and many BDSM spaces, while knees together might evoke more traditional religious symbolism. So on.
- Transitions. Getting in and out of those positions gracefully from various starting points. For example, kneeling by lowering to both knees at once without use of the hands. While there may need to be some flexibility here, what are the ideals?
- How should the s-type use positions that interact with furniture or items? This could include presenting an object (using both hands is common), or considerations for a position to assume if they are allowed to use furniture.
- “Positions” that involve motion. This could be a curtsy or bow, the command heel or crawl. These can have specific steps just as much as any other position. Heel for instance can involve a specific number of steps to the side and behind, and which side that is.
- Subtle positions. If you are going to be using these in vanilla situations, perhaps you have some positions that are specific enough to be positions, but not particularly notable. Standing with the hands loosely behind the back or happening to always sit with your legs crossed might fly under the radar in most crowds.
- Hand/leash signals. Likewise, a subtle, natural looking hand signal instead of a verbal command can be useful in discreet situations. A gesture at the spot next to you on the couch will look like an invitation, not permission to sit. So on. Even in kink friendly rooms, hand signals can be useful in loud environments or other situations. Leash signals (number or length of tugs, raising/lowering the leash, so on) can also be used for things such as kneel, stand, heel, walk beside me, stop, so on.
- Practice. Once the s-type has basic comprehension of the basic positions, practicing positions in front of a mirror is extremely valuable. You can catch small visual errors easily and it’s especially useful for the pieces that involve motion—curtsying or kneeling without wobbling, say. Stretching and mindfulness meditation make good warmups for practice.
Our Positions Section (From Our Contract)
- General Kneeling Position: kneeling on the floor where directed, knees apart, big toes crossed in back (right over left), hands folded at small of back (right over left, right thumb over left thumb), back straight.
- Leashing Position: kneeling on the floor at foot of bed, knees apart, big toes crossed in back (right over left), leash across both palms, hands resting on thighs, hair/head out of the way, collar o-ring in front, back straight.
- Corner Position: standing facing wall, legs together, arms boxed behind back, nose touching wall, back straight, silent and still unless prompted.
- Inspection Position: nude, standing in front of Kate, legs spread, hands boxed behind back, head/eyes straight, back straight.
- Waiting Position: standing where directed, legs together, hands folded at small of back, right over left, right thumb over left thumb, back straight, head/eyes down.
- Presenting Object Position: “General Kneeling Position”, but with object across both palms, hands resting on thighs, head/eyes down.
From Other Parts of The Contract That Address Positions
- When in Kate’s presence and not standing, Hannah will assume her General Kneeling Position next to Kate. She will ask Kate’s permission before changing position on the floor. She will not sit on the furniture or ask Kate’s permission to, unless directed by Kate. She will wait behind her chair in her Waiting Position before meals.
- Bedtime leashing protocols are as follows: if Kate is present, Hannah will ask her permission to remove the leash. If Kate is asleep or out of the house, Hannah may remove the leash if needed, and will re-leash herself upon returning if she does. Leashing or unleashing by Kate will be done in Leashing Position. Hannah will ensure Kate has leashed her before she falls asleep at night or will leash herself if Kate is unavailable. Hannah will sleep on the floor at the foot of the bed.
Other protocols from my dynamic for inspiration.
- Location Tracking. I have to notify Mistress if I’m leaving the house. This includes to the mailbox. Anything that goes off our premises. If I’ve been gone longer than twenty minutes, I have to notify her when I’m on my way back (there’s an exception here for my daily walk). If I’m going farther than the parks around the corner, I need permission to leave. I am to generally keep her informed of my plans (say, if I’m going out to multiple locations) and allow her to track my location via my phone (exception for daily walk).
- Permissions for things that may inconvenience/affect her, big or small. Showering, changing the thermostat setting, inviting people over, getting a job/getting a pet (just not allowed), making a phone call.
- Privacy (or lack thereof). I’m not allowed to lock interior doors (I can lock the bathroom if there’s company). I generally have no privacy rights, but that one is actionable on my side.
- General respect. I am required to speak respectfully and honestly to her at all times, and answer any message, call, or summons as soon as I can.
- Speak when spoken to. Kind of. Our protocol that covers this is: When entering Kate’s office, Hannah will wait quietly near the entrance until she is acknowledged. If Hannah enters a space Kate is in and does not make eye contact, it will be assumed that she is passing through, retrieving an object, etc., and will not be counted as “in Kate’s presence” (and thus not requiring waiting/verbal exchange before leaving.) Since she is nearly always in her office, this works for us and looks pretty subtle.
- Responses. Hannah will respond to orders with, “Yes, Mistress” and permission or favor grants or denials (including re-statements) with, “Thank you, Mistress,” unless it would be disruptive to the conversation. Response will be based on intention, not phrasing. (She has a tendency to phrase orders as “you may”.) She will address Kate as Mistress whenever clearly appropriate.
Useful systems for 24/7 dynamics.
- Inspections. We have two daily inspections, one around brunch and one around bedtime, both of which confirm that a set of tasks have been completed. This is a good way to maintain headspace and of course, check on any issues (generally none). It’s fairly simple, just a quick few looks at things for her.
- Maintenance. We use weekly maintenance discipline for similar headspace purposes. The exact details of it have shifted based on what was needed at the time. Prior versions included things like lines or cornertime, or an emphasis on catharsis. Currently it looks like this: Every Friday at noon, Maintenance will occur. Maintenance discipline sessions are defined as private and non-sexual. Hannah will fetch the discipline wand and wait in the bedroom with it in Presenting Object position, nude. Kate will give Hannah a spanking with the discipline wand (given over Kate’s knee). Hannah will count some strokes at beginning and end in the format, “One, thank you, Mistress, please may I have another?”
- Punishment. On the rare occasion an issue does arise (and generally an accident), we have a specific punishment protocol.
- Hannah will be instructed to fetch the discipline wand and go to the bedroom.
- Hannah will wait in the Presenting Object position, naked, and presenting the discipline wand until directed otherwise.
- Before spanking, Kate will prompt Hannah for why she is being punished.
- Kate will spank Hannah with the discipline wand.
- Hannah will be sent to the corner for some amount of time after her spanking.
- Kate will release Hannah from corner time at the conclusion of her punishment.
- “Meta Sunday”. Meta Sunday is our weekly check-in where we run through a list of questions to go over logistics like to dos and the calendar and things to discuss, but also “What can I do to make your life easier?” and “How can I be a better slave?”. We discuss the highs and any lows of the previous week, how we’ve felt, what’s been on our minds, and so on. Protocol does not shut off during this time or at any other time, and most of the time our answers are “we’ve already talked about this”, but it’s good to keep an eye on things.
- Written form for issues. Our contract has a Facing Issues section that reads:
Both agree to raise issues verbally for small issues, and in writing for more involved issues. The written report will include what happened to trigger the report, how it made the person feel, why they felt that way, what can be done to make it better right now, and what needs to be true for this to not happen again. The issue will be raised as soon as possible within reason.
There are a lot of ways to make a 24/7 high protocol dynamic work for you, but it does involve a lot of effort and consideration, and I try to present some things to think about here with examples from my own life for adaptation. I hope it provides some inspiration and starting points.