Today I inherited my grandfer's army beret, which was kind of timely as I was planning to hopefully get a bit of a debate going on here regarding Goths, steampunks, rivetheads and military regalia. All three of the abovementioned subcultures have been known to wear items of military memorabilia, be it fake, e.g. imitation medals, or genuine vintage military gear.
|Grandfer wears his hat.|
(Identity obscured at family request.)
|NOT a real military medal (but quite gorgeous).|
From Friston on Etsy.
However there are exceptions - you might find a medal that you feel you could wear to show that you honour your country or respect your country's armed forces, for example. But I feel it would be wrong for someone who did not earn such to wear anything like, say, a Victoria Cross or purple heart.
What about my hat? Well, I'm not ashamed to say that I exercised caution. I was close to my Grandfer and so I wanted to wear his hat, but I made sure to check with his wife (my nan) and my mum to see firstly what their thoughts were and secondly how they thought Grandfer might have felt about it.
Although I didn't grow up into the genteel young woman he was hoping for (he made me promise not to get a tattoo. As a fourteen-year-old who didn't want a tattoo, but preferred to keep my options open, I crossed my fingers behind my back. :-/ ), my family felt he would have been proud of me wearing his hat.
Not as proud as I am to wear it.
The Steampunk Tribune ran a poll with the header, "IS IT ACCEPTABLE TO WEAR MEDALS FROM CURRENT MILITARY ORGANIZATIONS ON STEAMPUNK ATTIRE?" Many felt that the wearing of such was disrespectful to service veterans, although an equal number said it would be acceptable if they had earned the medals themselves.
How do you guys feel about this? Would you/do you wear medals or genuine military regalia?
P.S. On a totally unrelated note, meet Mini-Edward: