Blog post soundtrack: The Legendary Pink Dots – Golden Dawn
Do you remember what it was that drew you to fashion originally? What clothing first set your heart ablaze? I ask because I’ve known many people who, much like myself, have either lost track of their loves or have been on the verge of forgetting. I know this sounds strange, but it’s actually quite easy. If you listen to enough criticism and or feel pressured to fit into the common mold, this sort of thing happens with frequency. Case in point: the many bright, bold, fashionable folk who later dump their fondness of self expression as they begin to age for fear of “looking crazy” or standing out. This is why I love Advanced Style so much. But I digress…
The first time I thought “I LOVE her style” was in response to Anjelica Houston’s portrayal of Morticia Addams (yes…how predictable of me). It didn’t occur the first time I saw The Addams Family (I was too young and brainless to understand such things), instead it sunk in at the age of nine when the movie was continuously rerun on HBO. In terms of style, I found it really difficult to reflect my love for all things Morticia until a new girl came to my school who always dressed in black (took place around the same time). Every day she wore a black sweater with black shoes and jeans, yet no one knew why. I fell in love with the look, as simple as it was, and wondered why I hadn’t thought of it myself. It goes without saying that I very quickly decided to copy her. Someone eventually asked her why it was that she only wore black and her response was, “My dad died.” But of course! She was doing this because she was paying homage to the dead. Being the morbid child that I was, I thought her reason made it all even cooler. So there I was, finally with what I thought to be a nice and simple way to tap into and express my inner darkness before even being a tween. On a separate yet still related note, I also can’t forget to mention the film noir beauties whose style I often admired, but their looks didn’t take to me personally till I got older.
Although Morticia’s limited ’90s goth style isn’t exactly what I relate to in current day, she will always be on the list of my personal feminine ideals and she serves as a general basis for all that I love in fashion. Namely dark garb, form-fitting silhouettes, and bold makeup.
Throughout my high school years, post-initial Addams Family inspo, I awkwardly tried to mimic what I came across in magazines and film (of the darker variety). Visually I was a mixture of goth and punk, and eventually moved into cybergoth. All quite amusing really, but I was really in search of something I could really feed off of. It wasn’t till I came upon Helmut Newton’s fashion photography that I really came to connect with something. My adoration of his work is not news by any means, but someone I haven’t yet mentioned (on this blog at least) who I learned of through Newton is Thierry Mugler.
Thierry Mugler is/was a powerhouse. A designer, stylist, and photographer who frequently collaborated with Newton, he has long been inspirational to me as someone whose interest goes far beyond the lens. Far ahead of his time, he produced gorgeously silhouetted garments and fantastic, even wearable, avant-garde designs. His work was a visual melange of ’40s fashion, lingerie, fetish wear, and futuristic designs. His design prime was around the mid-’80s through the ’90s but you can probably imagine how unappreciated his genius went (especially since no one ever knows of him for anything other than the perfume “Angel”). Often dismissed and referred to as “sexist,” he went little regarded by fashion editors and critics while in fact much of his work portrayed strong silhouettes, unique designs, and powerful femme fatales. The Mugler house met its unfortunate fall during the late ’90s. However, to this day his designs have been a source of inspiration for many.
I’ve long been a fan of Mugler’s amazing work but for a long time I’ve neither had the body for such amazing garments, nor means, nor gall. I’m now at a point where I want to freely embrace and show my fashion inspiration. But as you can imagine, it’s rather expensive and difficult to find wardrobe like the following:
Until the day I’m able to take some millinery classes, garment construction courses, do the photo shoots of my dreams, and tailor my life so that I might be in my own little world full of nothing but dark beauty, I’ll have to struggle along and constantly remind myself of what it is that I want, what I love, and frequently expose myself to all which I find inspiring. That way I might be able to continue to harness the strength needed to strive for it and remind myself why I landed myself in this here place.
Till next time,