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Discussion in 'Daaark-ness 2004 By Noir Boudoir' started by Noir*Boudoir, Oct 22, 2004.

  1. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    Part the first:

    Well, with Halloween approaching, it has fallen (with a hollow and gloomy thud, naturally) on my shoulders to attempt an VFG-oriented appreciation of matters Gothick.

    Of course, I really should be sitting in a leather-upholstered chair in front of a roaring fire, but alas, the family mansion was sold off in 1932 to pay off the victims of Uncle Arbuthnot... And shortly afterwards it was burnt to the ground by angry villagers brandishing torches and pitchforks...


    Once upon a time, in the north of England, extreme boredom with the prevailing love of gelled perms and stone-washed jeans led me to adopt purple velvet & silk, black fringed hippy skirts and lots of eyeliner as my uniform, in an attempt to create some alternative image for myself. (If you look closely at the Lily Rubin skirt I have listed in my VC-mall store, you'll see an 80s Top Shop crushed velvet top that was one of my prized wardrobe additions at the time...no surviving pictures, alas).Occasionally, I was chased by angry villagers brandishing pitchforks and torches...(but I usually got away)

    Gothic music was at the time dragging itself feebly out the dead faint it had fallen into after the Sisters of Mercy's 'Floodland' in the late 80s. Much tape bootlegging was done (some of it regrettable, below).

    (Fields of the Nephilim - style inspiration: Sergio Leone, major fashion accessory: Homepride flour) Best not to go there.

    Leaving out a long story, in subsequent years I let my fully-dour subscription to Gothdom lapse (although I never lost the steer-towards-the-black instinct in the stores, nor my fondness for H.P. Lovecraft, nor the idea that leather cinching corsets could in principle be a good thing

    A couple of years ago, I rediscovered the active (or perhaps 're-animated' scene in London). In a little over 10 years, Goth has sprouted multiple heads and some pointy tails too. I felt a little like Rip van Winkle. Crushed velvet was seriously passe. All the records I owned were 'trad goth', and in the meantime, punk and cyberpunk (a little more separate 10 years ago) had cross-fertilised with gothic trends entirely. The separate club scene of the early 90s had also completely permeated the goth dance scene...

    I'll attempt to summarize a few points here, but bear in mind one major caveat. We talk about 'Goths', buyers search under 'goth' and 'gothic' on Ebay (on Ebay.co.uk, in the dedicated 'goth' category!), and Camden town still features the greatest concentration of black satin, sprung-steel corsets, humungous boots, Emily Strange merchandise and metal-accessoried pinstripe garments ever known in the entire world, BUT you will never get a Goth to characterize their own trends.

    Case in point. Take the website of Slimelight, the self-proclaimed 'longest running alternative club'. My membership card features silver spiders on a shiny black background. The club plays, now wait for it:
    'industrial, power-noise, cyber-synth, ebm, cyber-goth, darkwave, trad + modern goth, plus crossover and related alternative sounds'

    Er.(Pretty much everything, actually).

    And, in the side panel, one can vote in a poll to express one's own self definition. Are you:

    Goth- Fetish- Punk -Cyber Punk- Industrial - Nu Metal -Grunge - Cross-dresser- or, I don't do category?

    Guess which won? Yes, it was 'I don't do category'.

    Nevertheless, no matter how much a sizable number of Goths will protest the individuality and untrammelled freedom of Gothic trends, many of them will still be wearing New Rock boots, bondage trousers and a Lip Service top. Or possibly a latex dress.

    Next week, I'll post summaries, in the broadest strokes imaginable, of a few trends: major labels in demand by such people as may be called Goths, such as Lip Service, Cyberdog, Dane, Shrine, Omen etc.; some trends, including fetish and Elegant Gothic Lolita; a guide to the fearsome Goth Boot, perhaps?

    'Fetish' trends:His 'n' hers latex. Aw bless

    I'll also post pics of a few of the garments I've sold in the name of 'Goth'. And, you never know, I may have smuggled a disposable camera into the club this weekend...

    In the meantime, I hope anyone else who enjoys loping mysteriously around the dark side will chip in with their own contributions to the thread.


  2. elsewhere

    elsewhere Guest

    I must say that although I find Dita's dress to be freaking fabulous, I didn't find her as a person to be worth supporting. I worked with her for ohh.. a year?.. and by and large she was always a b!tch for no reason.

    also-it may be worth adding a subsection to your summaries for Gothabilly :) (edited.. I'm a dork!)

    great topic-- As someone who often incorporated elements of punk, goth & other alternative styles into my own sense of identification, I look forward to your (and anyone else's) additions to the topic.

  3. schoolsgirl

    schoolsgirl Registered Guest

    My music likes are very mixed. The Grateful Dead, Widespread Panic Peter Murphy, Skinny Puppy,DCD, NIN,Cure, Siouxsie...after an accident in 99 Siouxsie's words were taped next to my bed:

    in the fountains pink champagne
    someone carving their devotion
    in the heart shaped pool of fame

    Bad luck you say -- it's just not your day
    but you've got to reach out -- grab your destiny
    kick up the dust -- kick up a storm
    kick out the past and take control

    There's no-one else -- it's up to you
    are you gonna wake up, or cry boo hoo?
    No-one else but you can rise up
    you know what to do got to get up
    No more looking down -- look up
    Come and claim your crown -- got to get up
    Got to get up

    Dad and I watched every Bela Lugosi Dracula movie, I have great memories of him dressing up as a vampiro and stalking us around the house and tickle us till we couldnt breathe. Later I developed a major crush on Gary Oldman since his role in Dracula. Saw Marilyn in Tampa when he was an unknown opening up for the Genitorturers. His shows didnt do too much for me back then, he was different and I liked that and he is a sweet person.

    One must experience the ball in New Orleans at least once in their lifetime....and powder sugar fights at Cafe Dumond afterwards to end the festivities :)

    anyone see the new Frankestein on the USA network? oooh!
  4. Sipping a Cafe du Mond cafe au lait as I type. I fell in love with them when I was down in NO for Ebay Live and I was thrilled to see that my grocery store stocks Cafe Du Mond.'ummmm...

    Dita is gawjus!!
    I have never met her but I love her pin up site and she wears alot of vintage. I have sold several dresses to her and she has exquisite taste. I dealt mostly with her sister who was just a doll!
    My MIL was the GM at a hotel here in Charlotte that MM stayed at while in town for a concert.
    She asked if we knew who he was and so we filled her in. She could not believe it because she said he was dressed very plainly and looked just as 'normal' and sweet as could be. She also said that he was very soft spoken and polite.
    Of course she expects musician to tear up the rooms. Several years ago she rented to The Police when she was the GM at a hotel in Pittsburgh and they destroyed the rooms.
    Oops, sorry, did I get off topic?:)

    My early movie memories are of Frankenstein and I alway felt kinda sorry for the poor monster.
    I love old monster movies!

    As for goth, I am totally in the dark (pun intended).
    I think most ebay seller think black=goth and that is the extent of their knowledge.
    I would love know more.

    What I find kinda funny is the whole 'mall goth' thing.
    I mean isn't part of the whole mystique originality? Can you really be original when everything your wearing was mass produced for HotTopic?

  5. Patentleathershoes

    Patentleathershoes VFG Veteran VFG Past President

    Then there is paraochial goth

    you are old enough to determine what you will wear to school but too young to drive so cannot fully obtain true wardrobe autonomy. So you pair items from different outfits that do not go together really but are only united by being black. so that inky black sweater that bleeds on every other piece of clothing its washed with, the black fading into a dull mousey color stretch pants, almost charcoal gray jeans all figure into the mix. And you never knew that there were so many shades of black until you saw it all under the flourescent school lights and it all looked like a mismatched mess.

    so nowhere anywhere near what we would think of as really being "goth', BUT you WERE still within dress code rules.

    Something about being a preteen makes you want to wear black.

    oh, the above was not about anyone I know or any school I have ever attended :P
  6. This is FANTASTIC, Noir*Boudoir!

    On the down side, you've got me hooked. I want to be able to just keep scrolling and read more, now.


  7. Patentleathershoes

    Patentleathershoes VFG Veteran VFG Past President

    I can hardly wait either, Steph!
  8. bartondoll

    bartondoll Guest

    Lin, this is fantastic!! Looking forward to more!

  9. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    Thanks everyone! Just checking back in to let you know that more *will* be posted tonight (on Elegant Gothic Lolita - style/inspirations/connections - need to do more scanning first... and Lip Service - the ultimate successful subculture/widespread marketing interface)

    Kristine, I wonder if what you call Punkabilly is pretty much what I call Gothabilly? I'd be interested to talk about this, since it's something that's been in transition this year, I guess... I'll perhaps post a few pics later in the week to get us going. I'm also thinking of inflicting a personal obsession on everyone and doing a 'pinstripe across the fashion genres' post...
    more later,

    ps. I *do* have a pic of me in last weekend's outfit, but I'll only post it at the end of the week if everyone's *very* nice! We did have a disposable camera in the goth club this w/end, but quite frankly, the only shots were of us pulling faces into the lens, and that's not very sartorially enlightening is it?? As for everyone else, the aesthetic horizon looked disappointingly same-y, with everyone in mix 'n' match black pvc and satin corsets, or UV-reactive gear and glo-sticks... I think all the exhibitionists must be saving themselves for next week...
  10. Patentleathershoes

    Patentleathershoes VFG Veteran VFG Past President

    Lin Plllllllllllleeeeeeeeeeeeeeasssssssssssssseeeeeeeee
    show us the pic of your outfit! I promise we will be nice! I can't wait to see what you have wipped up for tonight.

    I really wonder what people will think looking back on this 30-40 yrs from now.

    Take Mod for instance...people do not agree on when it was, when it ended, etc.....there are people who are purists who believe that the minute it had a definition and then as it was embraced by the masses that it was "over". Kinda reminds me about the "I don't do" answer on the questinoaire. And then there are folks who would say that Mod was still alive and well when it hit the states and its influence reached into the early 70s and such. and then there are people who were just born with Mod shoes glued to their feet like me were too young to have really been a part of that original scene. (and it becomes recognized for its components...slhouettes, etc...instead) so it lives on somewhat at least on the outside and in dribs and drabs in fashion.

    It is similar to Goth, etc...in that it had to do with culture/music/atitude and fashion was an end product or a work in progress that unlike other fashion styles started from the bottom up.

    I don't think fashion designers saw kids sitting around and wearing "new look" style garments after the war and Dior adopted it for the masses. That i think came more from the top down so to speak..versus from the bottom up, and then from the top out to the runways and masses if that makes any sense. but someone probably knows differently.

    Of course, I think Goth (my limited opinion) self adopts some of its roots from the "Turn of the Screw"/Mary Shelley/Edgar Allen Poe gothic era of literature in dribs and drabs just as it has perhaps elaborated on punk (both punkers and goth kids at my school wore dog collars) to some extent/mixed in with the neoclassicism that was starting again in the 60s, and leaning way over through the 70s....and period dramas of the 80s.. But i am no expert.

    Just random thoughts.

    So I wonder how will this sort itself out in the end? well, not the end, but as years go by... as we try to neatly fit it into a package.

    as Lin said what we thought of as Goth in the 80s is now passe by afficianados of the look. Like now that Goth babydoll lolita and goth like boots are out there on the runways and being interpreted next year in a kmart near you....
  11. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    <b><font size=”+1”>P</font size>art the Seconde (clanngggg)</b>

    Hello my pretties!<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/wickedwitch.jpg">

    Now’s the time to embark on a tale of corrupted cuteness and daring design. In my <I>youth</I>, the only stylish dolls wearing lacey dresses, bibs and otherwise leftfield nursery attire were the wonderful Babes in Toyland (and maybe occasionally, Alison Crane – any other progenitrices, propose them!). In the meantime, an influential fashion trend has snowballed, white lace, black velvet trims and maryjanes a-flying…

    The <b><I> Elegant Gothic Lolita</b></I> has only a distant link with the character of Nabokov’s novel {brief plug for a great book}. In reality, she’s the haunted offspring of long-standing Japanese fashion traditions such as baroque design, exaggerated little-baby-doll-ness and anime caricature.

    You’re familiar with ‘Fruits’ as an Ebay keyword? It comes from the magazine founded by photographer Shoichi Aoki, who filled it with documentary shots of the young Tokyo style rebels who filled the ‘pedestrian paradise’ (<I>hokoten</I>) of the Harajuku district at the weekends from the early to mid-90s (the same district has since been de-pedestrianized).<p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/fruitsshot.jpg">

    These exotic, avant-garde DIY-costumiers drew inspiration from punk, manga, Japanese rock and <I>warmono</I> a trend encompassing kimonos, obi belts and tweed jackets…

    Elegant Gothic Lolita was the dark little sister of these bright exhibitionists.

    <p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/gothiclolitastreet2.jpg"></p>
    (Despite being a bit punk and anti-label, Viv Westwood turns up <i>a lot</i> in these outfits!)<br>
    The trend gained its own journal – the Gothic Lolita Bible (the scan of shots from Harajuku above comes from volume 8, as scanned and posted for wide dissemination at:
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/gothiclolita7.jpg">

    ‘Mainstream’ EGL (if there is such a thing) draws mainly on exaggerated styles of Victorian little girl dresses, but the wider trend encompasses the long-line, frilled elegance of the Edwardian era too.<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/angelicpretty3.jpg"></p>

    The basic styles can be illustrated with garments sold by androgynous poster-boy for EGL, Japanese designer and musician Mana, who models many of his own clothes. The wares of boutique Moi-Meme-Moitie are divided into the bouffant ‘Elegant Gothic Lolita’ (first, below) and the elongated ‘Elegant Gothic Aristocrat’ (second)<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/egl.jpg">
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/ega.jpg">
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/moi-meme-moitie.gif">
    The presentation of Mana’s clothes in his own shoots and music sites is pretty vampirically-tinged. Having listened to only a small amount of his music, Malice Mizer, I can only describe it as, er, coffin pop. <br>Complete with church organs.
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/mana5.jpg">
    <br>(Mana in Paris for the Japanese expo)</p>
    There are numerous other Japanese designers and boutiques, only a few of whose work filters over here.<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/gothiclolitaspread.jpg">
    </p>Here you see the style in a little less stereotyped form.

    </p>The larger ‘Lolita’ fashion category also admits colour. But if you have a flouncy, flowery mini corset dress to sell, call it ‘Lolita’ but not ‘Elegant Gothic Lolita’!
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/angelicpretty2.jpg">

    <br>(From the online boutique, ‘Angelicpretty’)

    <p>Elegant Gothic Lolita has gradually permeated through to Western Gothic styles, which have long been in thrall (via their Cyber branch) to Japanese anime. Below is a recent range called ‘Morbid Legacy’ offered by Lip Service (of which more later) which draws on the Gothic Lolita spirit.
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/darklegacyoutfit.jpg"> <br>(from the Lip Service website)

    </p> The full-skirted 50s/80s revival of the past year has meant that the EGL style is now a more accessible influence for mainstream style (the need for lacey petticoats collides head on!). I’ve just seen a spread of the new, much-anticipated garments designed by Karl Lagerfeld for H&M in British Elle, and they look like a direct cross-pollination of EGL with 50s satin ‘n’ diamante.
    I’ll add the full scans later, but here’s a teensy preview:<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/henneslagerfeld.jpg">

    Now, put your hair in pigtails like you're Miss Haversham's love child, go forth and <i>skip</i>!</b>

    (n.b. I've irresponsibly stolen most of these images, although I think I've credited everything, so bear in mind they're for information purposes only! I think if you want to cut and customize Gothic Lolita Bible spreads for comparison purposes, it wouldn't do any harm though).
  12. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    <b><i>la troisieme partie...</b></i>

    <u>LIP SERVICE</u>

    ‘The Original Cult’

    Now, I’ve said it before, and I’ve hinted at it again: Goth is <I>supposed</I> to be an anti-label, individualistic and independent expression of personal style. And often, it is, as different aspects are carefully selected, mixed up and subverted in turn by various wearers (whether fully goth or not, as Liz and Kristine have pointed out, above).

    Nevertheless, ‘mainstream’ Goth clothes marketing, and <I>particularly</I> goth on Ebay, is very brand-led. Just see the KWS-rate for ‘Lip Service, Hot Topic and Torrid’ on any given day.

    In this brand-sourced Goth style, Lip Service is, frankly, pre-eminent. This label started out as a punky-rock/alternative wholesale clothing supplier in the mid 80s, when former ‘skate rat kid’ Drew Bernstein discovered he could make a whole lot of cash making skull-and-dagger-printed leggings for an uncatered-for market:

    ‘I figured if worse came to worse, I could always wear them the rest of my life’

    (The skull is now on the present label – read Bernstein’s memoir on the Lip Service site, it’s quite amusing!). Soon, he picked up on the British fad for PVC/vinyl and introduced clothing lines using that too. Lip Service’s 80s <I>rawk</I> credentials were sealed by their patronage by Guns N Roses (insert shrill guitar squeal here).

    Two retail stores were opened in Los Angeles (on Melrose and Hollywood Boulevard), although now the business is entirely wholesale, and Lip Service retails out of specialist boutiques (and Hot Topic).

    The key to Lip Service’s success is their ability to latch on quickly to coming trends. They’ve covered the whole range of alternative fashion desires, including fetish-lite (all styles that would be made in latex by a specialist in North London, transformed into easy-to-wear vinyl):
    <p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/bunnypagetramp2.jpg">
    <br>The fabulous ‘Lady is a Tramp’ 40s-style PVC suit, as modelled by bunny*page on her online store, DangerDame.</p>

    Perennially classic-looking gothic gowns:<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/lipservicesweetsorrow.jpg">
    <br>the ‘Sweet Sorrow’ range</br>
    <img src="/goth/flowersofeveil%20mon%20coeur%20qui%20s'ecoeur.jpg">
    <br>the ‘Flowers of Evil’ mon coeur qui ecoeur dress<br></p>

    Not only that, they distill and enhance some current fads to the extent that their ranges become the epitome (in European/N.American circles anyway) of that style. Viz, the ‘Hollywood Geisha’ range, now in it’s <I>third</I> incarnation after two years:
    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/hollywoodgeisha%20thirdgeneration.jpg">
    <br>And the marvellous Gangsta Pranksta group:<br>
    <img src="/goth/gangsta.jpg"></p>

    Lip Service styles turn around as fast as the style currents that drive them; one garment group can keep regenerating over 2-3 years whereas another may disappear as ‘discontinued’ within one season. For this reason, past Lip Service catalogues are valuable things! They give you the style group name and wittily specific blurb that go with each garment, and under which fans may still be searching for the last piece to complete their outfit years later.

    That said, the collecting and demand for ‘vintage’ Lip Service is patchy (and by this, I mean discontinued Lip Service from the last few years <I>and</I> older). One or two under-produced lines can be frantically searched for and bid on, while other more generic, or somehow less currently attractive lines, can lie lonely on the auction block.

    Lip Service goes for more money in the UK, simply because official customs and shipping are so astronomical. Boutiques like the Black Rose in Camden sell Lip Service for the same number in pounds as their original cost in dollars. In the US, garments need to be a desirable piece of a desirable line to be the object of a bidding war. I’ve seen samples and examples of older lines (such as the popular Hollywood Geisha) go for opening bids, somewhat unremarked, while current styles available on the website are lost in the foam of a feeding frenzy. People <I>do</I> collect Lip Service, though, so it’ll be interesting to see how these prime indicators of alternative culture appreciate or depreciate in value!

    In the interest of helping anyone who wants to navigate the 2nd hand world of Lip Service (and given that I don’t own any catalogues), I’ve appended a label survey, which sketches out a little more clearly how the brand is continuing to be redefined.
    <p align="center">

    LIP SERVICE – the labels

    The most well known lip service label is still the old standard rock-esque entwined rose ‘Lip Service, Los Angeles’ label. This is what you’re going to find on the majority of old Lip Service lines. Bret mentioned in another thread a while back that an earlier paper ‘black on white’ label was in use in the eighties.
    In the meantime, this is the earliest Lip Service label to show you, from a recent auction by Bonton.

    <img src="/goth/bontonslipservicelabel.jpg">

    Now, this stayed in use up until approx. mid-late 2002 (or possibly early 2003), I think. This is when the launch of a new line caused a reorganization of the way Lip Service styles were grouped.

    In June 2002, Lip Service announced the launch of a new division, ‘Black Label’, geared ‘to customers between the ages of 25 and 40’. This was marketed as a toned down daywear version of the label’s youthful hard-edged styles. I suspect the sizes were relaxed a little in this line too. It was launched with the following vintage-tinged style groups: ‘From Dusk ‘til Dawn’ (a sort of frilly, Old Orleans, lacey empire-waisted dolly line), ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Paisley’, ‘Cross Hatch Denim’, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ (plain, slightly grown-up coffee and burgundy chiffon with vinyl trimmings), ‘Lily Lace’ (more transparent mesh ‘n’ lace), ‘Sonic Temple Suede’, ‘Year of the Chinchilla’ (faux jackets etc.), and, my personal favourite, ‘Strictly Stripes’ (40s-meets-punk dresses & separates, in red/aubergine and black/steel colourways).

    The samples and early models of this line carry the ‘Black Label’ label, as follows:

    <img src="/goth/lipserviceblacklabel.jpg">
    From a 1st sample Black Label Strictly Stripes jacket, ‘hot off the machine of Amparo’, dated 14th April 2002 (below)
    <img src="/goth/strictstripes.jpg">

    But this seems to have been changed quite early on to ‘Blacklist’, which is the more common label for these lines:

    <img src="/goth/lipserviceblacklist.jpg">
    From a Strictly Stripes vest top in the same colourway.

    The Blacklist/Black Label range was discontinued in 2003 (disappointingly, because in retrospect, the punked-up vintage styles were diverse and quite interesting).

    At around the same time, in 2002, several of Lip Service’s basic fetish style groups (like everything made of vinyl, or featuring straps etc.) were grouped in the new Fetish label:

    <img src="/goth/lipservicefetish.jpg">
    From a stretch shirt with pvc straps ‘Sexy Secretary shirt’ of the ‘Work Detail Stretch Poplin’ style group.
    I’ve seen the ‘Lip Service’ part of this label chopped off in remaindered garments on sale in London.

    I have another variant style group label, from a 2003 ‘Electro Company’ shirred mesh dress. This group is now discontinued, but contained a number of 80s-esque, Xanadu ‘n’ Rollergirl inspired garments (Fame goes Fetish, if you will). I’m not clear on whether this label was used on the several other 80s-inspired style groups launched in the last year, or whether it is part of a larger tendency to customize labels to each garment’s style.

    <img src="/goth/lipserviceelectro.jpg">

    And finally, the new standard label, which seems to have taken the place of the old rose-entwined one as the most commonly used tag.

    <img src="/goth/lipservicenew.jpg">
    From a spring 2004 Gangsta Pranksta ‘Bettie Bruiser’ skirt.
  13. Patentleathershoes

    Patentleathershoes VFG Veteran VFG Past President


    I am bowled over. This is impressive and I admit I am hooked.

    I think the most common look i have seen on the street so to speak is the "Sweet Sorrow" look. (but i must preface that by saying i used to live around Salem, Mass where many people also tended to dress with these leanings due to their employ - or the ability to express these leanings there. though there were different shops and fashion contingencies when i was there. the crushed velvet meets Johnny Depp in that Jack the Ripper Movie with a few buckles and studs for good measure is another look.) Of course the pre-Edward Scissorhands look was more prevelant back in my school days as well as the aforementioned "parochial goth."

    There is a lot of ideas more in mainstream media that Goth is about death obsession and the wanting to set your self as delibrately misunderstood. (as seen on tv!) perhaps that is perpetuated in the media but mainly by angsty dejected preteens.....however, many of the looks depicted here could not be further than that in many ways. Some looks have a more boudoir feeling to them...or also like you say...the "elegant goth aristocrat" look...
  14. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    Yup, I'm not surprised - it's kind of 'classic' goth. I'd say that outside of London, it probably still just has the edge over the club-influenced cyber look too (although the two aren't mutually exclusive). My experience has mostly been on the clubbing side, whereas there are other events that foster that wider romantic, 19th century style. Preeminent is the goth weekend at Whitby, that usually happens twice a year (the next one is this weekend, naturally).

    There, some of the same DJs and bands that play in London etc. take part, but somehow it appears more of a mecca for the trad goth contingent (perhaps it's the full-on Dracula associations?).

    There's a garment bring and buy sale there, so it's probably a hotbed of style revision and wardrobe refreshment!

    Just a couple of pics of what I suppose we'd call 'trad goth' garments that I sold a few months ago (and did quite well). The first is a party top from a high street chain, that with the right presentation becomes a romanti-goth poet blouse. The second is a chiffon-sleeved, be-crucifixed product from UK goth label Dark Star. I have to say even in my first goth incarnation this last one would have been a bit much for me and I did hide it under a number of other clothes when I had it waiting to auction... But somebody loved it!<p align="center">

    <img src="/goth/arabesquefront.jpg">

    <br><img src="/goth/darkstar1.jpg">

    And yes, you're right, the media presentation of all goths as depressed and imminently suicidal, while frequently amusing, is a bit wide of the mark. All the goths I know are fairly happy people, they just want to <i>look</i> different!
  15. :o :o :o

    Lin, you're amazing!

  16. Patentleathershoes

    Patentleathershoes VFG Veteran VFG Past President

    the trad goth contingent (perhaps it's the full-on Dracula associations?).

    what about that?

    what about the "vampire people". I know there is a contingency of folk who either dress like or associate with the vampire legend...some overlap to the aristocratic goth/Anne Rice book aficianados.......but then there are a whole other splinter group of people who ...i dunno don't really have to do with goth but for a fleeting sense of fashion...i mean the folks who take the vampire persona REAL far and buy coffins to sleep in and might even get their teeth cosmetically altered. Is that just a whole different thing psychologically or a far off distant cousin splinter group that is related far back somehow....

    I know that's kind of a weird question, but one hears about them from time to time.
  17. Patentleathershoes

    Patentleathershoes VFG Veteran VFG Past President

    ""so it’ll be interesting to see how these prime indicators of alternative culture appreciate or depreciate in value!""

    I know. and what is especially interesting is things become "vintage" before they are really vintage. the true example of the phrase "that was so last year." But i think to keep in perspective a lot of young people are wearing this as you say... to me when i was 20, things i wore and did and said when i was 18 or 19 seemed like ancient times. It's that "searching for identity...trying on many hats very quickly.." age so i can see why things change so fast. Heck to me my combat boots i stomped around in the early 90s seem to feel like 20-30 yrs ago vs just the 10-12 it actually was.

    not to say that people of course that are 25-30-35-40+ aren't wearing it, but the changes and the splinterings off of styles that go on almost monthly (well not monthly...but you get the pic) as you seem to say, have that more frenetic tormented rhythm that would be more of a young person's persona.

    I do't know if i make any sense anymore..you certainly are making sense! And i hope that i am learning to apply what i am learning....
  18. bigchief

    bigchief Alumni VFG Past President

    Lin -

    I am <i>speechless</i>, this is just too much fun! You write GREAT. Don't stop.

    And re: the photos of you from the club last week -

    don't make me beg :D

  19. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    Mwahahaa! Carolyn - I'm going to engage in diversionary tactics first... (pinstripe & cyber, when I get my act together)

    Chris, your comments are really interesting! About the vampire thing. I've never got into that (I'm more of a H.P.Lovecraft kind of a girl) - but the vampiric tradition is one part of the old-skool horror genre that does, by style association, influence quite a lot of goths.
    <p align="center"><i>
    "Hear the chil-d-rren of the niiight - vot mewsik they maaake!"</i></p>

    It's funny, vampire literature & style is one of those long-standing popular culture sectors that has always been available to goths as part of their style (see Mr. Cushing, above - I've also seen the occasional Gary Oldman impersonator. They must think the beard looks good...)

    However, it really doesn't seem to link up with serious blood-fetishes etc. that often (although the occasional blood fetishist *may* dress up like a goth, for all I know)

    Eg. my BF regularly plays one of these ridiculously complex & sociable card games using decks of vampire characters & settings (don't worry, I'm brilliant at relentlessly taking the p*ss). But he's not an Anne Rice fan, let alone someone who would consider a cape as an actual *garment*. Vampire material is more of a kitsch, traditional fun/associated style resource (see Buffy, & the film 'Underworld' - full of goth fashion! - although Van Helsing was a little more 'rawk' and, frankly, more naff).

    We had a good laugh when one of CSI's (surprisingly frequent! strangely!) fetish episodes was set in Las Vegas' blood-drinking 'goth' scene. All that po-faced masochism just didn't ring true.

    I think the 'dracula' trad-goth connection here is more to do with preferring that elaborate frock-coated, foppish style of dress - like a slightly less camp version of the brilliant Euro-trash Dracula in that episode of Buffy (which season was it? that was fantastic).

    <p align="center">
    <img src="/goth/dracule.jpg">
    <br>(Dracula, yesterday)


    Now, I don't have *any* knowledge of this at all, so please jump in and correct me if I'm wrong, but I suspect the magical/wicca/ satanic associations are similar (and I'm not equating the three there, just listing them as cultures assoc.'d with goth).
    'Witchy' style is a key look in gothdom, but that will have little or nothing to do with anyone's serious involvement in that world. Nevertheless, I'm dimly aware of the fact that a whole bunch of black magic practioners in Belorusse may dress like goths.

    Or maybe I just know lots of boring, un-experimental goths??

    The one 'belief' connection with gothdom that I have speculated about is Catholicism. I was the only goth in my (non-denominational) high school, but gothic (and indie, for that matter) styles were much more prevalent among the groups of people I knew at the local Catholic schools.

    Again, I don't think this is by any means something to draw genre-wide conclusions about (especially since I have <b>no</b> idea <i>now</i> what the proportions of the cultural backgrounds of most goths are). But I have sometimes wondered whether one of the attractions of the style is how it becomes a showcase for manipulating or playing with (and not necessarily subverting) overt Christian imagery - and that this could sometimes be a response to the rich visual world of the Catholic church, in particular.

    That's a bit of a wildcard I'm throwing in - it's not something I believe one way or another, just something I've thought about!

    Back to the pics later.
  20. Noir*Boudoir

    Noir*Boudoir Guest

    (Parentheses) Hmmm, have thought about this again, and to simplify wildly:

    I think with <i>all</i> these alternative or slightly subcultural groups that are associated with <i>looking</i> goth, <i>and</i> all the different goth trends that I have mentioned (or will talk about), we've just got to imagine a whole series of overlapping and intersecting but <i>separate</i> circles. All have one or several things in common, but they're <i>not quite the same</i>.

    Like an overcaffeinated Venn diagram or something. Or one of those old invasion maps that has multiple arrows pointing in all directions. <i>All</i> of these groups of people have something in common, but they all (as I have been doing, really) distance one from another by some criteria (including total denial of being anything goth at all).

    Just forcibly deport everyone looking vaguely goth-like to a series of deep valleys in a small, concentrated section of the Caucasus, and you'd have everyone speaking different obscure languages and declaring war on each other in <i>seconds</i>.

    It's a long way from 'Stunning witchy Black lace dress GOTH Fetish REN Cyber PUNK 0.99 @LOOK@!' isn't it??

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