Ah, bless the bizarrities of the Halloween season... Goth just can't seem to stay out of the media all of a sudden. In fact, even Italian Vogue has gotten in on the act, presenting its very own 'Guide to Goth Chic' (dear Vogue ed: stop trying to do me out of a job...).
Don't get me wrong, I love Vogue. I love the pretty pictures and make-up. And the perfume ads. But oh, dear, when an article about Halloween begins with the inutterably ridiculous statement that 'Halloween was invented in the USA' (?! - give me a moment to stop my eyeballs rolling after that one), I feel it's practically my duty to investigate further.
The premise of the article? Not a bad one, but... sayeth Vogue, "Likely, you will be wearing something short and revealing and flashy and culturally insensitive. Now, what kind of fashion magazine would we be if we didn't try to provide you with a few style pointers to make your Halloween less about showing skin and more about looking ghoulish, albeit in a chic way?"
I like the idea of treating Halloween with a little, well, class, but as much as I hate to say it, what could be more SUBculturally insensitive than presenting the Gothy fashion that we all adore and that many of us adhere to from day to day, and put money and hard work into, as a costume to throw on for a single evening?
|Image presumably from one of the larger Goth festivals.|
Source: Vogue Italia
The description of Gothic Lolita couldn't be more facepalm-worthy if it tried. See for yourselves: "One woman's fancy dress is another woman's everyday dress: Gothic Lolitas spend a considerable amount of money on custom-made clothes and accessories that make them look like Victorian child prostitutes. Whatever floats their boat." Prostitutes?! With the exception of ero-loli, Lolita fashions are about class and elegance!
Vogue then drop the Marilyn Manson card with their seemingly self-invented sub-genre, 'rock'n'roll Goth': "Marilyn Manson did it best in recent years, of course, but going as Marilyn Manson requires a lot more effort than it's worth, and in a recession who has the wherewithal to splurge on glaucoma contact lenses? A much cheaper and ultimately kind of lovable version of the Rock'n'roll Goth would be Robert Smith (black hair, teased and sprayed stiff; red lipstick, clumsily applied; panda eyes)."
Ahem. Manson's style is a sort of amalgation of Goth and glam rock, so I suppose the rock'n'roll tag could just about be applied here, but don't drag dear Mad Bob into this mess, please. As one of the people who helped inspire trad Goth style and thereby the fashion that we know today in the first place, he hardly deserves to be referred to as a 'cheaper version' of Marilyn Manson. >.<
And also, this: "Cartoon Goth – Morticia Addams; any given Cullen character in Twilight, or failing that, your average vampire bride; Samara in The Ring; Chloe Grace Moretz in Let Me in; take your pick." These examples are not 'Goths', they are CHARACTERS. Goodness gracious me!
The article rounds off on an equally sour note by describing emos as 'baby Goths' and throwing out the usual insults about 'staying in their room and wallowing'.
All things considered, I think I'd rather put up with the 'culturally insensitive' costumes this article supposedly seeks to prevent (whilst actually seeming to give women a chance to titter behind their hands at the weirdos who want to 'look like child prostitutes').
The real problem I have with this article, though, is that at the top of the page there is a slideshow of images of Goths in their most glamorously deadly festival gear. THESE ARE NOT HALLOWEEN COSTUMES OR FANCY DRESS. These are people wearing what they find beautiful, and I for one don't like to see it compared to Morticia costumes or as an example of what people should wear for Halloween. I think it's rude. Sorry, Vogue.
Goth gossip: H&M are putting out a Goth-friendly fashion line inspired by Goth character Lisbeth Salander (of the Millenium trilogy), created by the fashion designer who created Rooney Mara's look as Lisbeth in the English-language remake of the Swedish film The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.