Saturday, August 23, 2014

Of Wearing Fashion Darkly~~~~

Hello Darklings,

And you Dear Rebecca your wish is my command...

As everyone knows, those who are over the age 40 mark, or in my case Well over the age 40 mark, dressing Goth for everyday wear for work or just going to the grocery story,  can look very silly.

Especially with over the top styles that one sees in Gothic Beauty magazine and others.

If you are 50 plus or even 45 plus, we cannot look like Morticia Adams because as my Doyle would say "It would freak out the Muggles".

I've covered this before in much earlier posts a few years ago, and frankly the reason why I have not recently posted about it is that many styles that I see out in the Muggle world are designed for young people, I mean Vogue, Vanity Fair, Elle, In Style, etc.  so much so that I have not seen anything that would inspire me to say  “YES an Elder Goth can wear this.  

Just the other day, Sis and I went to TJMax and we saw a woman who must have been 60 to 65 if she was a day, with long dyed blond hippie length hair, a cap right out of the late 1960’s, wearing a tank top, pink leggings and much too much hippie bead jewelry and majorly over-size sunglasses.

About the only thing I liked was the hat and the sunglasses, but the rest of it just did not suit her, Tank top without a bra, no, because the “girls” hit the navel,  scrawny arms with wing flaps, Bad wing flaps and legs that were so thin they bordered on tooth picks no, no and no.   The hair was all wrong too, it went well past her hips.

If she was trying to recapture Woodstock then she was living in another world, and it looks foolish on her.

I would have taken her hair and given it a Jackie O. pageboy look, convert  the tank top to have long sleeves and something to support the “girls”, convert the pink leggings to boot cut jeans with maybe a bit of embroidery and remove 99 percent of the jewelry and keep the hat and sunglasses.  She still would have embraced the “ghost of Woodstock” but as suitable for her age.  

And I’d be the first to admit that such Goth magazines such as Gothic Beauty is really suitable for the late teens to mid-thirties.  But in looking at that magazine one can get a few idea’s to inspire a person.

Because to be an Elder Goth one has to “cherry pick” what will look good on you, what will give the effect you want without going over the top.

With that in mind you have to consider your age, and Know  your body shape, that way you’ll know what style will look good on you, know what colors will and won’t work on you,  and know what would be appropriate for where you work.

Another thing is that it does pay to know how to sew or have a friend or good seamstress who can sew for you.

So what do you do?  Well I like to look at what is being offered at most department stores, Dress Barn is my favorite go to store for affordability.

 But for a tallish person like me I've been finding that they are offering what one would call Day dresses or for work dresses in which the hemlines are above the knee.

At my age my knees do not look all that good, or as Mae West use to say "I like long dresses, they cover a multitude of Shins” Meaning not everyone has great shaped legs or knees, but by the same token you do not want to be stuck in pant suits all the time and you don't want to look like you're wearing Granny dresses either or have come off an old West movie looking like you've cross the great plains in a covered wagon.

This means you have to look for separates, blouses and skirts, especially for work and I've found that skirts that have the hemline at where the calf begins to swell is good unless you have thick calves, then I recommend skirts which end above the ankle bone, to prevent dragging on the ground and with just a slight lift of one's hand. 

Some of the skirt lengths from the 1980’s which are just below mid-calf, work very well with dress boots, excellent for winter time and with the simple colors of Black, purple or grey with the right accessories can look very dramatic.

Now I have found some lovely things in the Pyramid Catalogue with just a little down play can give the edgy corporate look slightly bordering on Steam Punk Goth.

Yes Darklings I’ve found that the Hard Edge take no prisoners corporate look is best for Elder Goths.

Why?  Because we’ve lived longer and have been through the wringer.

I have found the best styles for me is in vintage fashion.  The trick is to wear Vintage Fashion without looking like you’ve gone through Grandma’s trunk.

Vogue Patterns as well as some other pattern companies like Folklore sell modern recreations of vintage patterns and with choosing the right one’s you can find something that will work very well for you.

But sometime you’ll find a vintage pattern that will deliver the look you want.

I found one of a day dress, with a slightly full skirt, ¾ length cuff sleeves, and a pointed collar that would open v-neck style and it was in my size---I had my seamstress trace the patter to protect the original and had several day dresses made from it in black, dark maroon, and a deep dark green with a black pattern all in light weight material perfect for Summer.  She was even able to convert the top part into blouses for me as well.  And considering the hot days we had it was perfect.

An Elder Goth is not afraid to wear a wide brim hat to protect her face from the sun and use the highest possible Sunblock available.

I have found for myself the clothing styles of the 30’s, 40’s, 50’s and very 60’s work very well for me, they give me that slight other worldliness, like I’m part of the real muggle world and yet not.

I’ve found a hair style that suits me perfectly, it’s the one Gloria Holden wears in “Dracula’s Daughter” but I do wear a wide brim hat on very sunny days and gloves as well.  But not so that it looks ridiculous, but as if to have people think have they walked into a time warp and yet seem part of the current world.
I have posted here several items I’ve come across that you may like

This evening dress is from Dress Barn, and with a lacy silvery shawl can look very goth, just change the make up a bit for a more dramatic look.

This is from the Pyramid collection (the top) now although shown with leggings you can wear it with a skirt that flows, or for work, with black slacks that fit nicely, not saggy.

This jacket is also from the pyramid collection and is perfect for work or going out, it has that steampunk yet edgy felling to it, if you go out on the town in the evening wear one of those little fascinator hats with a veil.   For work a skirt that's mid-calf and dress boots will look good with it.
Now with this one also from the pyramid collection, I don't use the hat and had the veiling removed and made it detachable and it makes for a really wicked evening dress.
This is just a few things I've come across, Sometimes Darklings I'll go through an entire fashion magazine and find only one tiny item that I simply have to have, last year it was a ring that I saw in Vogue magazine, and of all places I found it several months later at TJ Max. 
Simple dressing always can make a statement.
Another place that I look for Elder Goth ideas is the movies, I'm still inspired by Vera West, but a lot of those period gems, the Film Noir up to the early 1960's can be very inspiring.
So I will get back to my "roots" so to speak, but I have been having so much fun and ups and downs with family.  But I will start looking again and see what I can find.
Later Darklings.


  1. I love Pyramid Collection catalog as well as Victorian Trading Co. Catalog. I can't wear the ruffely Victorian styles because I am full busted and shortwaisted but simple flowy looks I can pull off. I also second Dress Barn...hate the name but the clothes are well made and budget friendly.

    I really should order the lacey tunic you posted. I still wear leggins with long tunics since I am relatively slim and have long legs. Nothing with a tight to though...that is best left to the younger set. Tight tops and tight bottoms are generally less than flattering on my shape.

    I agree that most goth looks are less suited to older 45 or 50 plus year olds but sometimes the "feel' of a goth look can flatter older goths without upsetting the Muggles :)

    Love your post.

    1. Agreeing with you and Rebecca. The KISS method works for me (Keep It Simple, Silly). I love Dress Barn, too; they have become my go-to store in the past year.