Any part of an outfit that floats independently from the rest of the clothing. Done almost entirely for Rule of Cool
, as there is little practical purpose for this.
Sometimes this is justified by magic or Applied Phlebotinum
, but even when it's not, this trope usually appears in fantastic or futuristic settings.
In Far East Asian mythology (China, Japan, Korea) one trait the gods have, which is mostly associated with female gods, is the ability to defy gravity. This is reflected in art, where you'll see the gods have flowing hair and stoles that float in the air.
A Holy Halo
counts as this, when depicted as a floating circlet.
Compare Impossibly Cool Clothes
, Detached Sleeves
(which can even overlap with this).
Not to be confused with clothing that gives the wearer anti-gravity abilities.
Anime and Manga
- In Trinity Blood, Seth's metal...circle thing floats around her shoulders.
- The Imperial Orb, a powerful magical artifact and the Requisite Royal Regalia of the Dragaeran Empire, orbits the head of the Emperor or Empress.
- As Stan Lee and John Buscema point out in the classic How To Draw Comics the Marvel Way, if a character has a cape, it should always be drawn billowing dramatically behind him, even if he's standing in an enclosed room with no wind. To heck with gravity.
- Some of the capes worn by the generals in DragonForce.
- The overskirt worn by the mages in Phantasy Star Online.
- Celine's shower curtain thingy and her hat-brim halo in Star Ocean: The Second Story.
- Magical vests (and chains) worn by Kel'thuzad from Warcraft.
- As well as some of the armor pieces characters can wear in World of Warcraft. One example is the Poison Protocol Pauldrons, which seem to be three straps of leather surrounding an orb of blue fire on either shoulder. When looked at on the character, they don't actually touch the chest at all.
- Salome from Makai Kingdom.
- Pronyma of Tales of Symphonia actually weaponizes this once.
- League of Legends has a few champions with weird floating neckpieces. One of them is a telekinetic so it makes sense. The other not so much.
- Dahlia Hawthorne from Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney has the floating stole, signifying that there is something otherworldly about her.
- Jin Saotome's scarf in Marvel vs. Capcom.
- The divine stole mentioned in the description (called a hagoromo in Japanese) shows up a few times in Touhou. Oddly, never with actual gods.
- Caitlin from Pokémon Black and White has hair, bows, and a transparent cape that does this. Justified in that she's psychic.
- In Rune Factory 4, the three butlers Volkanon, Vishnal, and Clorica all have some sort of lacy armband that just floats next to their sleeve.
- Most of the supernatural characters in Soul Nomad have some variation of this.
- Marcus from Hell(p) wears a beanie with a pom on a string that floats like it's made of helium, giving him a bit of an Idiot Hair look.