Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Gothic accessories

Accessories are a large part of the Goth look, as a well-chosen accessory (or two, or three...) can give even the most basic of outfits a whole new look.

Silver is usually the colour of choice when it comes to jewellery, as it accents black clothes beautifully. Ice Princess at Academia Gothica says, "Silver-tone jewellery is overwhelmingly popular with Goths. I think it's the associations of silver being 'cool' (as opposed to gold being 'warm'), moonlight, and so forth. I don't see a lot of Goths wearing gold-tone metal. Copper, however, is sometimes seen; it contrasts nicely with silver, and is a change of pace."

Goth jewellery tends to incorporate symbols such as crucifixes, spiders, coffins, crosses, bats, pentagrams/pentacles, and of course, skulls. The wearing of a religious symbol does not often relate to the actual religion of the wearer.

In Warmer Weather
Many Goths enjoy retaining a ghostly pallor (although it is by no means necessary to be as white as a sheet to be Goth; nor is being Caucasian a requirement. Goths of non-Caucasian descent - who refer to themselves as ethnic Goths or Goths of colour - are not considered 'less Goth' for not being spooky-pale.), and so warmer-weather accessories often reflect this.

Sunglasses are, of course, an obvious choice, and many websites such as Retro Rebels and Veil of Visions stock unusual shades for the discerning Gothling. Goggles (popular with cybergoth and rivet-head fashion) may also provide some UV protection, depending on the brand.

Often, Goths will carry a parasol on sunny days - sometimes this is to protect their skin from the sun (aka Daystar, Yellow Hurty Thing...), sometimes just for show. Parasols are most certainly an attractive accessory but tend to draw unwanted attention (or so I have found) and can also make one's arm ache after a couple of hours. Also, bear in mind that carrying a handbag and a parasol leaves you without a hand free for anything else.

It is also becoming more popular for Goths - particularly the ladies - to carry pretty fans to waft about themselves in hot weather. These can be bought quite cheaply online, or (between you and me) Anne Summers stocks black and red feather fans for a bargain £5.

What else?
Tights and socks come in all sorts of interesting patterns, styles and colours. Fishnets, stripes, lace and skull patterns are seen most often. Goths who like having a vintage air to their ensembles may opt for stockings and suspenders rather than tights; this is also a common choice for clubwear.

Gloves and armwarmers are ever-popular, armwarmers particularly amongst the younger Goths. A delicate lace glove or ripped fishnet sleeve will utterly alter the look of a simple black dress.

Wristbands and belts come adorned with spikes, studs, or pins. Chains are seen often (again mostly amongst the younger set), draped from waists and hanging from trousers. Collars and chokers can add an edge or give a touch of elegance (depending of course on the style).

Eyepatches are currently experiencing a surge of popularity, possibly due to Gothic Lolita fashion become more well-known. I have also seen many photos online of women wearing elaborate eye-masks, as though they were at a masquerade, or a strip of black lace crossing the eyes like a blindfold. This is probably not the best accessory idea for work or school.

Goth gentlemen, emulating the aristocracy of a bygone era, have often been known to carry a cane (more often than not topped with a silver skull).

Oh yes, and I was almost forgetting veils, fascinators and hats. There is almost a never-ending range of gorgeous Gothic headgear - Victorian-style designs such as top hats and long black veils, Lolita-esque delicacies such as mini-top hats or tricorns, burlesque fascinators adorned with feathers and ribbons, even crowns, circlets and tiaras... shop about online to see what you can find. There are also plenty of tutorials out there that will show you how to make headgear of your own - a simple Lolita headdress is easy enough to make and would provide a good starting point for learning to DIY your own clothes and accessories.  

For the little details, wigs, clip-on hair extensions, and coloured contact lenses will give you a full-on Goth make-over in a moment, without costing a fortune (usually). Not to mention you can remove it for work on Monday (or when Grandma comes to visit).


MissGracie said...

I can't figure out why goths love armwarmers so much. I have a drawer full of them and they are probably one of the most popular accessories.

Anonymous said...

Wow... where would you get bracelets like the one in the picture?

ultimategothguide said...

@ Anonymous - try

SiSiM0nstr0sity said...

I know that a lot of goths try to stray away from Hot Topic because well... It's Hot Topic but as of recent I've found they have some wonderful accessories like the ones pictured in the image above. I've gotten two pairs of earrings, both featuring chains and crosses, a bracelet made up of multiple layers of black and silver chains and spikes, and even an ear cuff featuring a spike where your piercing is. They're positively wonderful, mind you the quality isn't the best they do have a really lovely aesthetic appeal.

Anonymous said...

Despite the goth dislike of Hot Topic, but its the only place in my city that has cool Nightmare Before Christmas and other Tim Burton related stuff.

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