Why do I like these clothes?
October 28, 2007 10:03 PM   Subscribe

FashionFilter: Help me find/understand the clothes I'm inexplicably being drawn toward.

Every fall, I find that my taste in clothing shifts a little farther away from basic fare and enters--well--I'm not sure. I DO know that most of the styles I like seem to come out of the UK; in other words, overseas to me here in SC. But more on that in a moment. I would like the hivemind's input here (and, for the record, posed a related question a previous fall, with some great input) as well as suggestions, general feedback, etc.

To illustrate just what I'm getting drawn to here, I bought a pair of Madfish Flap lowrise boots (Madfish Flap Boots) and absolutely love them. I purchased a Criminal Damage Hook coat (Hook Trench) and love it as well. I've snagged a pair of Rank jeans (lowrise and ~close leg fit) and my eye has been caught by the pants at the bottom of this page (Black Jail Pants) . They're not really emo clothes, or gothic, or scene, or punk particularly...are they?

Finding this stuff has taken me ages (off-and-on, of course) so I'm open to suggestions on what the common thread is here (if any) and how I might go about finding similar styles. I was pretty well consigned to having fallen in love with European fringe fashion (and by that I mean paying conversion rates and lots of shipping) but that's not quite the case anymore. Ralph Lauren seems to have started carrying similar styles, (check it out in black) Carrier Vintage Flight Pant (although well out of my price range) and the Tommy Hilfiger jacket featured on the far right of The Tommy.com Frontpage (which, mysteriously, has yet to appear in any online stores so far as I know) is a dead ringer for this odd new fashion sense I have. Heck, even American Eagle and the like carry a few red/black frayed-seam T-Shirts that fit the picture. It's mostly black, mostly close-fitting, mostly cotton.

So, maybe some of the hivemind can help me figure this out. How can I find more clothes like these (at less than Ralph Lauren prices)? Is this some sort of European fashion/culture? Are there any recommendable fashion resources/forums where I could ask these questions? Thanks for your time, and hopefully your input.
posted by Phyltre to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (21 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Uh, I'm not an expert but most of that stuff looks high school goth to me. Try Hot Topic? I don't know if I'm missing some small but important distinction, but plenty of kids at my high school dress like this. Sort of industrial Goth with lots of metal details, mostly black, sort of dystopian futuristic military.
posted by MadamM at 10:19 PM on October 28, 2007 [1 favorite]

Incidentally, didn't you ask almost this same question before?
posted by MadamM at 10:26 PM on October 28, 2007

There aren't really enough examples, but this looks a lot like deathrock fashion, which is a cross between mainstream punk styles and goth. It's also a lot like cyberpunk, except that cyberpunk fashions usually have a lot of bright colours and you seem to prefer black. So, looking for cyberpunk clothing lines and then picking out anything black you find may help.

Countercultures do tend to thrive more and have more variety in Europe than in the US, in my opinion. That is probably why you're finding it more from the UK. Typing in the keywords I mentioned above into Ebay should save you some money. If you go to Ebay.co.uk, you will find that most sellers don't state that they ship outside of the UK, but if you message them and ask them then most of them are willing to do so.
posted by giggleknickers at 10:40 PM on October 28, 2007

Seconding Hot Topic, and adding Sinner/Saint Menswear, Chocosho and Lip Service.
posted by xo at 10:44 PM on October 28, 2007

Response by poster: @madamM--Looking at these questions, they sound a little more similar than I'd intended, but I was trying to focus on actually getting concrete pointers this time rather than hearing lots of answers to the question "Hey, is this weird/acceptable?"

Also--unfortunately, nothing I linked to (and no male clothes I really like) is sold at Hot Topic. At least not at any I've ever seen. Either you have the spandex-like jeans or the uber-baggy ones with giant neon cross-swatches on them, and tons of printed tees, basically ad nauseum...at least in my area. And let me just say, I have yet to see anyone at any time (in person) wear anything resembling the stuff I linked to, and I frequent a college campus.. Perhaps this is somewhat of a regional difference?
posted by Phyltre at 10:46 PM on October 28, 2007

I share your fashion sense (and, for what it's worth, I was a high school goth -- 10 years ago). Unfortunately, clothes aren't much fun anymore, now that I've gotten old and fat, so I don't shop much these days. I buy whatever's black and vaguely shaped right at the Gap ... which isn't much.

Hot Topic used to carry neat stuff, but on the rare event I go to a mall and check them out these days, they don't carry much of it anymore. Maybe they do this week, because it's Halloween.

I used to shop a lot at Lip Service. Weed through the fetish gear and I bet you'll find stuff you like. I have an extremely awesome "corset jacket" from them -- floor-length, faux boning around the waist, toggles down the front -- that's an obnoxious and over-the-top version of the jacket you linked in the OP.
posted by liet at 10:56 PM on October 28, 2007

Fair enough- most Hot Topic stores do tend to run in that direction. I'd suggest looking at their website- I found a couple of things with a few minutes browsing that look sort of like the things you like. They're probably not as nice, but on the plus side they're cheaper and definitely available in the US.

As far as not seeing people wearing what you like, it might just be a high school/college difference. For whatever reason, I tend to associate this kind of stuff with high school. I also might be missing some distinctions between what you like and don't like- I'm just going off of the impressions the clothes you linked to give me.
posted by MadamM at 10:59 PM on October 28, 2007

The clothes you've purchased don't seem to match the RL and Tommy items you've linked. The only thing I see in common between them are the tiny details, especially metal details (metal buttons, zippers, clasps). Also, the Tommy coat is just their take on the duffle coat - those fasteners aren't metal clasps like the other coats but just rope/hemp loops and wood fasteners.

Can you list some of the European fringe fashion labels you've been importing?

I can only think of Diesel as a European label that is somewhat in line with your style and is "mainstream" enough to find in US department stores. They do a lot of edgier with metal details and torn/frayed seams. Depending on where you live, I'd look into other denim-based labels.

For coats, head down to a army/navy surplus. You should be able to find a lot of coats, jackets, and pants with excess of metal buttons, fasteners, and zippers for a whole lot cheaper than the brand name.
posted by junesix at 11:43 PM on October 28, 2007

If I saw someone dressed like that, I would assume that they were into industrial goth culture. I have only the vaguest of understandings of what that culture might entail, and in fact "industrial goth" might not actually be a thing, but that would be my assumption.

Googling "industrial goth clothing", I found this and this (they describe it as "dark, industrial menswear with a military influence, if that aids in defining your style.)
posted by thehmsbeagle at 11:46 PM on October 28, 2007 [1 favorite]

The Tommy coat is like a duffle coat -- though duffles usually have a hood. Hoodless, it looks a lot more stylish. It might help you to know that the buttons are called toggle buttons, and the garment is sometimes called a toggle coat.
posted by wryly at 1:44 AM on October 29, 2007

It isn't European fringe fashion, these are goth clothes. I very much doubt that Ralph Lauren is taking inspiration from 17yr old Marilyn Manson fans and their cheap goth attire this year, however I can understand their may be very minor similarities in the materials.

If you'd like to get your hands on some similar, "European fashion" clothes then try Vivienne Westwood, you'll pay through the nose for it though.
posted by fire&wings at 3:44 AM on October 29, 2007

Attitude Clothing in the UK clad most of the skate / punk / emo / goth kid clones that mope around our cities. And they ship internationally. If you really want to be on the money with UK kid fashion then get yer Nu Rave on.
posted by brautigan at 4:22 AM on October 29, 2007

I asked a vaguely similar question and got a few responses. But I think you'd like G-Star Raw stuff. Also try Diesel and Triple 5 Soul (lots on eBay).

Why do you like them? I'm not sure, but for me, they feel tough without too much pretense, and masculine without looking like a preppy, slightly punk without being attached to that whole scene and industrial-vaguely-uniform without looking like a costume. Kind of Matrix meets GI Jane.
posted by barnone at 6:55 AM on October 29, 2007

Your key search words should be 'cybergoth' 'cyberpunk' 'industrial' and 'rave' clothing.

Why do you like these clothes? Because they're effing cool.

I second futurstate and also recommend plastikwrap and cyberdog - and ebay.

These styles are more popular in Europe, yes, and Japan, but there are also cybergoth/industrial/rave scenes pocketed all over the states too. Mostly they correspond to various forms of EDM - industrial/gabber/hardcore techno and other kinds of rave music.
posted by infinityjinx at 7:37 AM on October 29, 2007

Also check out Trash and Vaudeville in NYC: http://www.nycgoth.com/shops/trashnvaudeville/

That Tommy duffle coat you like is considered preppy but that kind fits, in a strange way, into the military/industrial punk look the other stuff seems to tend toward. The shoes say "ska" to me but UK ska not American...I don't know if there are places that sell ska clothes.
posted by kenzi23 at 8:54 AM on October 29, 2007

In DC: Commander Salamander
posted by citron at 10:07 AM on October 29, 2007

Also check out your local army-navy surplus store. lots of rivethead people i knew back in the day would shop there. not expensive!
posted by citron at 10:08 AM on October 29, 2007

There is (or used to be) a magazine called Gothic Beauty, I would check out and occasionally buy just for the clothing advertisements sprinked throughout. Oh wait, here it is! Try there.
posted by lunachic at 12:14 PM on October 29, 2007

Cyber clothing at Chateau Bizarre

Cryoflesh clothing


The cheapest probably, Redemption Klothing

Slash n Burn clothing

That link to Chateau Bizarre is one directory; there are many. It'll give you a review, price idea, sometimes a sample photo and direct link. There are vampire clothes, goth things, cyber festish couture, boots, you name it. I find it to be a great resource when looking for weird stuff. Especially handmade boutique things.

If you can afford a pair of New Rock boots, they are amazing. A-MAZING. Google around and see where you can find them the cheapest; I bought mine in LA on sale for about $300 and they are guaranteed to last 10 years. It actually says that on their tags.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 12:26 PM on October 29, 2007

Response by poster: Many, many thanks to all who answered. You've pointed me in all the right directions I couldn't have found on my own.
posted by Phyltre at 1:23 PM on October 29, 2007

Oh and I forgot to mention, Velvet Garden is like an online flea for Gothic Clothing. I've gotten several pieces from there myself.
posted by lunachic at 3:37 PM on October 29, 2007

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