Monday, January 30, 2012

Stripes, Parts Deux and Trois

Yes, more stripes from me. Are you surprised? I told you I was addicted! First up, this was my Chorale outfit two weeks ago, in which the correct answer to the old riddle "What's black and white and red all over?" is Jamie:

Black lace shrug-Love Culture
Skeleton hands necklace-Forever 21
Red tank top-Savers
Black and white striped corsetlet-Fusion Federation
Black and white striped arm warmers-Artsmyths
Black ruffled skirt-Goodwill
Red tights-Target
Ruby slippers-Hot Topic
I forgot to take a picture of the back of the shoes, but they actually have a black and white striped heel and are too adorable for words, even though they make my feet hurt. I felt very Tim Burton-esque in this outfit, which of course made me happy!
The next outfit was from last week, when I was in a purple sort of mood:
Black dragon necklace-Asian Gifts
Pinstripe blazer-Plato's Closet
Pink cami-Forever 21
Black/purple striped handwarmers-Claire's
Black overbust corset-Punk69
Black asymmetrical ruffle skirt-Goodwill
Purple striped tights-TJ Maxx
Vampire shoes-Hot Topic
Annoying Siamese who is affronted I interrupted her leisurely drink at the water bowl-Denver Dumb Friends League
Once again, cute shoes that make my brain and style sense happy and my feet sad. Are there any other kind? Actually, both these pairs of shoes were Hot Topic clearance-which is good, because $12 for the red ones and $15 for the vampire ones is a lot more acceptable to my excessively thrifty brain than $45-60 a pair regular price! I think I've become addicted to fingerless gloves/handwarmers/whatever-you-care-to-call-'ems-I've actually had a lot of mine for quite some time, but I've been making a concerted effort to actually wear them more. Since I'm going to New Zealand in less than 3 weeks (eek!), and I'm taking one large and one carry-on bag worth of clothes for five months (double eek!), so I've been practicing accessorizing with small, light things like jewelry and handwarmers. That way, when I have less clothes, I can still do a variety of fun outfits by changing up the details! Have any of you ever had to travel with a limited wardrobe? How did you work it out? 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Stripes Ahoy!

I may be slightly addicted to striped things. Striped tights, pinstripe corsets, striped skirts...I think it's all Tim Burton's fault. If he didn't constantly put great looking stripey costumes into his films, I wouldn't want to wear stripes all the time. But he does, and I do, and the result is outfits like this:
Fake "pearl" necklace-Arc
Demon necklace-Repeat Boutique
Black lace shrug-Savers
Buckled pinstriped corset-The Crypt
Purple-and-black-stripe handwarmers-Claire's
Purple-and-black striped skirt-Buffalo Exchange
Black leggings-Wal-mart
Black boots-Buffalo Exchange
I think when I first saw this skirt at Buffalo Exchange (in the Halloween section, natch), my reaction was something like OMGMINEMINEMINEMINEMINE!!! Fortunately, most sane people don't want a bright purple and black striped skirt, so I was able to snatch it up and abscond happily to the checkouts with it-I think it only cost $6 or $8, and it makes me so happy. Stripes! What else can I say? I'm a walking Goth cliche when it comes to 'em. Speaking of stripes, I will very soon have the mother of all Sew Very Goth posts coming up, so keep your eyes peeled. I just have to do about 18,000 feet of gathering first. What's your favorite cliche Goth style? 

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Running Away To Join The Circus

Ok, I didn't actually run away to join the circus. I just looked like I was going to. Outfit from community band last Tuesday, complete with elephants, dancing ladies, and a mini top-hat:

Red mini top hat-Gift from a friend
Bronze medallion necklace-Downtown Duds
Red flowered blazer-Goodwill
Black ruffled camisole-Goodwill
Circus-print vintage skirt-Arc
Black lace handwarmers-Claire's
Red and black vertical striped tights-Hot Topic
Victorian heeled ankle boots-Ross
When I bought this skirt, I was a little worried that it might be a bit of a one-trick pony, so to speak-the print is so wild and distinctive that I thought I wouldn't really be able to wear it in a lot of ways. $4 for a vintage (I'd guess 1950s-1960s) skirt in near-perfect condition that actually fit me was too good to pass up, but I didn't know how often I would be able to wear it. However, I think I managed to make an appreciably different outfit with it this time than I did the last time I wore it, here. I think it has depths of versatility yet to be explored-who knows, maybe I'll end up wearing it all the time and end up being the crazy girl with the circus skirt! I think the problem is, in my mind versatility has pretty much always equaled plain, unadorned black. It isn't until recently that I have been able to see something patterned, printed, striped, or colored and go "Hey! That'll make a great basic, versatile piece!" I've been fighting with my fashion preconceptions lately, and I'm proud to say I'm winning. 

Monday, January 16, 2012

30-Day Goth Challenge, Day 1

So, I just looked at the calendar and realized that, in one month, I leave for New Zealand. It's crazy to think about, and it is going to be even crazier getting ready for, but I am determined to do it-and to be a better blogger along the way! In order to motivate myself to blog more regularly (and I'm not even going to offer excuses for my pitiful posting so far this year; I've just been lazy, and that's all there is to it!) I am going to try the 30 Day Goth Challenge from the lovely Juliet's Lace. Today, Day 1 of the challenge, poses what would seem to be a simple question: How did you come across the subculture?

Well, for me, that simple question...isn't so simple. Ok, it actually isn't so VERY complicated either, but I like to make myself sound more mysterious than I actually am. :) In retrospect, a lot of the traits that would grow up to be Goth in me manifested themselves very young. I watched The Addams Family movies quite a bit as a kid, and enjoyed old Munsters re-runs. I was obsessed with vampires and ghost stories, and I always loved Victorian children's literature. I also frequently displayed a strongly independent, if not entirely tasteful, fashion sense. I was obsessed with prairie dresses and penny loafers in second and third grade. I may be the only fourth grader in history to wear a black velvet catsuit with a long red scarf looped around the waist to school, followed the next year by an entirely leopard-print outfit (leopard-print pajama pants, matching old maternity top of my mom's-no, I'm not kidding about that-and hairbow in a completely different kind of leopard print). Thankfully, no pictures of these sartorial abominations exist to haunt me, but trust me, they were bad.

So what does all that have to do with Goth? Well, I'm getting there. In 7th and 8th grade, I went through what I like to refer to as my "conventional" phase; the bullying about my out-there outfits had finally gotten to be too much, and I wanted to fit in, so the farthest I would go was a wild top with a pair of jeans. I was 13, and when you're 13, you make such things way more important than they are. Instead of wearing the skirts and dresses I so desperately wanted to wear, I would read the Dress A Day  blog and fantasize about the day when I could wear a scrabble-print dress or alphabet-print skirt. One day, Erin posted about a Goth lady, Jillian Venters of the Gothic Charm School, who was seeking pink and black striped fabrics. Intrigued (one of my friends had recently started going the whole Hot Topic route), I clicked on the link-and found myself in an amazing, absolutely fascinating world. Here, finally, were people who looked at life in the same odd, quirky way I did! Here were people who loved beautiful clothes, and Tim Burton movies, and vampire books! I was hooked, but only in the mental sense. I had seen how my friend, and several other kids at school who identified themselves as variations of Goth and punk, were treated, and I just wasn't ready for that.

So for the next two years, through my freshman and sophomore years of high school, I bided my time. I rebelled against the jeans-and-t-shirt dresscode of my peers in small ways; I wore tailored black and grey pants with a cheerful Eyore t, or donned a black lace tank with jeans that laced up the sides. On days when the tennis team played, I joyfully wore my skirts and dresses, secure in the knowledge that no one could make snide comments about me being *shock, horror* "overdressed", when everyone knew we were required to dress nicely for matches! Finally, after I left school to go online for my last two years, I was able to get the requisite mental distance to realize that I shouldn't care what people at that school thought, and I should wear what makes me happy, snide and sniggering idiots be damned. I threw out all but one pair of jeans (a girl has to do things like hike and paint some times!), bought a bunch of stripey tights and lacy skirts, and I've never looked back. It's been a long, and sometimes bumpy road-but I can safely say that I am today an unashamed, unreserved, and exceptionally happy Goth. So, thank you to the random Google search that led me to Erin's amazing blog, which led me to Jillian's amazing blog, which led me into Goth and all the amazing people, places, and things I have discovered in this subculture. I love you guys! 

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Slightly Dirty Victorian

Well, typical of my usual New Year's Resolutions, I seem to have promised to become a better, more frequent blogger only to promptly disappear from the Internet for a week due to a soul-sucking flu/cold combination. But never fear, lovely readers-I'm back with a vengance today. I was inspired by Kitty Lovett's Year of the Filthy Victorians but didn't entirely meet her requirements, and thus don't really feel I've earned full Filthy Victorian status. Instead, here's my idea of a slightly dirty Victorian:
Black and silver striped button-down-Goodwill
Butterfly pin-Arc
Grey wool vest-Arc
Black-black striped underbust corset-The Crypt
Black silky skirt with ruffle-Arc
Black laced-up handwarmers-Claire's
Zippered boots-Ross
Because the pin is so lovely, I had to do a close-up of it:
Apologies for the low-ish quality of the picture; I was trying out the cameras on my new tablet, and I'm still getting used to them! Overall, I was quite pleased with the outfit; I liked how the swirliness of the skirt contrasted with the more menswear-inspired button-down and vest, and I felt rather rakish with just the bottom buckle on my corset poking out from underneath my vest. I haven't really done much with wearing corsets under, rather than over, other clothing-I know, I know, they were actually underwear and such, but I just love the look of them so much that I try not to hide them away! Now that I've done it, though, I'm actually rather enamored of the notion of a corset under a vest, so keep your eyes peeled in the future for more such outfits. 

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year, New Blogger

Hello, ladies and gents! Sorry for my extended absence from blogging, but between the craziness of finals, moving out of my dorm, and finalizing paperwork for my Study Abroad in New Zealand, I have been hugely busy. I'm not normally huge on New Year's Resolutions, but the one I want to make for this year is to be a more consistent blogger. I've also sadly neglected the geek portion of my blog, and I want to bring the "comics" part of my tagline "From Comics To Corsets" into truth with more book and movie reviews and looks at the intersections of goth and geek culture. There are a lot more than you would think!

As to the other stuff I like to post about: I have a fairly large backlog of outfits, and I've been sewing again, so keep your eyes peeled in the coming days for a plethora of outfit posts and the return of my SewVeryGoth feature. If you don't remember this, don't feel bad-I've only posted about three or four of my sewing projects since the blog started. I've done more, but I haven't posted about them! However, I'm participating in the Stitcher's Guild SWAP (Sewing With A Plan) contest this year, attempting to sew 11 items that will all co-ordinate with each other in a set wardrobe. I've added an extra element of challenge for myself-I'm trying to make versatile items that will travel well, be wearable in a number of situations, and still maintain my elegantly Goth-y style. I leave on February 16th, so even though the deadline of the contest is April 20th, I have about a month and a half to make 11 things. Considering I've used almost all the patterns before, and I almost finished one blouse from cutting out to partial construction today, that's not as difficult as it sounds (I hope). Have a bright and happy 2012, all my lovely readers and fellow bloggers; I hope that I will be seeing a lot more of all of you than I did in 2011!