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The Fashion Vampyre: Industrial Goth…

A Social Introspection
By Octarine Valur

Industrial Goth: According to a friend of mine, it’s the bare -bones of Goth fashion. Instead of lace, velvet, flowing dresses, it’s t -shirts, cargo pants, boots and sneakers. The color palette runs from black to all shades of browns and greens. To offset this rather plain, hence one use of the word industrial, the hair can be bright red, orange, purple, blue. Sometimes it’s black with bold streaks of color; falls for women ... Mohawks for men.

Facial make-up is kept to a minimum; emphasis on eyeliner and lipstick. Wheather male or female, it’s a more masculine asthetic. Think apocalyptic (in a secular way) when all that lace and satin has been swept away and the barest of necessities are left. 
But the primal needs to gather and dance etc. are still

My friend, who is working on her doctorate in archaeology and is a historian, does have an idea of past and future connecting to present. She also considers herself industrial goth.

With the present economic crisis, it can be a reasonable choice made; industrial Goths are usually between the ages of 25 to 35, who came of age before 2000. Definataly an age group hit by hard economic times.

And according to my friend, the traditional Victorian Goth scene can be difficult to break into; dealing with the pretentions of the founders and what she calls “baby bats”.

This appears to be another contributing factor to Industrial Goth. She compares this to the mechanism of Victorian society. One thing that merited becoming acceptable in society, especially if one had aspirations of becoming nouveau riche, was fashion. And the poor and working class struggled along
the best they could.

Fashion has not broken free from that influence. One need only observe the high interest in the attire worn at inaugural balls or the stars of music and film.

Industrial Goth is a reaction, a rebellion of sorts, not only of the Victorian scene but of main -stream fashion in general. It’s the blatant statement of being Goth encompasses more than clothes or even the music, with it’s hard -core techno overtones.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who notices the parallel of what makes a vampyre a vampyre and it’s not the clothes. The eras that influenced much of the classic vampyre fashions were the Romantic/Victorian eras; periods when the vampyre was making it’s way into literature from Varney to Dracula.

A historical time period when what the clothes were epitomized the identity or won approval. There was a tremendous push pull between rational/scientific thought and religious status quo. Yes the vampyre might be a villian but a cultured well -dressed villian. Ironically, one can look at some of the notoriously wealthy of that era who also had a villainous nature; think Diamond Jim Brady.

These are some obvious signs of why Victorian Goth has influenced Vampyre fashion. I also wonder if this is a way we as vampyres can come to terms with our awakening. Of feeling like a monster within or just a little crazy and looking glamourous or elegant helps us feel better? Or is it just our own need to have
clarification, a historical foundation to start from? After all, vampyres have existed all over the world since the early time of myths. I have yet to meet a vampyre who prefers to dress in a toga… yet as a statement.

Ironically, an underlying mythos of Industrial Goth is that humanity has the tenacity to survive no matter what happens. Go deeper and so do we vampyres… take away whatever attire we choose to wear, and we have that same tenacity to survive through the worst of times.

To quote my friend who is not a vampyre but knows I am: ” Like the rest of us, you vampyres will always be here.”

Well here’s to all inclusive browns and greens – besides, it’s hot out and I chose to be comfortable… cargo pants, t -shirt and flip flops!
Griffin M.

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