Remember the days of sitting at the mall or on a curb by your usual hang out, chain smoking cigarettes and trying to look mean? Well, maybe that was something that was particular to my teenage years. Regardless, if you went through high school in America, you know who the kids were that did hang out at the mall in all black, reeking of smokes and Orange Julius. This season, several designers have pulled inspiration from the angsty teens around the world that cavort in their neighborhoods donned entirely in black, despite the season.
If you've just taken a deep breath to prepare yourself for the trip you're about to take through fashion, then you need to get in the mood. Watch the devestatingly beautiful "Let the Right One In", the surprising Swedish film written by John Ajvide Lindqvist and directed by Thomas Alfredson. Released in 2008, the movie is based on Lindqvist's 2004 book of the same name. It deals heavily with first love (and not the High School Musical kind), while winding it through the depressing reality of living forever. Yes, this is a vampire flick, but there are no sparkeling teens here, and the child actors make the film all the more moving in the darkest way possible. If you're sick of vampires, then take the time to listen to the Swedish rock duo, Johnossi. Formed by John Engelbert and Ossi Bonde of Stockholm, Sweden, their sophomore album "All They Ever Wanted" is a tribute to angst and love lost. John Engelbert's voice is gravely and melodic in a way that only other ilk such as Kurt Cobain could attain. Now that you're prepared, let's get started.
As GQ fittingly put it, "You're either ready to board the Rick Owens train or not." I'm ready, willing, and able. Rick Owens never disappoints, and among runways rife with overstatements of inspirations (like the western trend mentioned last week), Rick Owens (above) is reliable despite his edgy designs. This season, he mixed some color into his line, which cause a collective gasp at his show in Paris. Loose heavy boots as well as assymetrical light sweaters and jackets created a futuristic goth vibe at it's best.
3.1 Phillip Lim created a line that would make Joy Division wet themselves with excitement if it were still 1985. High waisted pleated pants, as well as light colored loose buttoned shorts plagued his collection that was shown in New York. Imagine Edward Scissorhands and the stereotypical "bad kid" from any 80s movie had a baby. It's a beautiful thing.
What was most surprising this season was the sheer number of designers that embraced the goth trend. Designers that the fashion world would never expect to make such dark designs did, and they excelled at it. Givenchy (design below) created a line that boarders on the fine line between urban warrior and pissed off teenager. High collars and oversized hoods hid the models' faces, making them seem all the more dangerous. As usual, the line was created with high attention to detail and pinache. What else could be epected from such an established French fashion atelier?
Other designers such as Calvin Klein, Lanvin, and Roberto Cavalli dressed their models in all black with a dash of anger (see the slideshow). While it may seem impossible to pull off this trend without dusting off your Doc Martens of days lost, do not fear. You don't have to look like Groovie Mann of My Life with the Thrill Kill Kult to make this hot trend your own. Keep your usual style, but wear all black. Don't have a pair of pitch black jeans? Go get yourself some! Have Chuck Taylor's but they have that overly joyful white trim at the soles? For shame! Snag yourself a pair of All Star Midnight Chuck's. There isn't one speck of color other than black on the entire shoe. If you instist on adding a dash of color to your look, don't get crazy. Take direction from the designers in this article and only add minimal color. It'll help you feel like you're not about to attend a funeral, and it will break up the monochromatic black.
Now you're feeling a little more adventurous (I can already tell). Well, the best thing for you to do is head down to the Alley to collect the neccessities for you to rock the futuristic goth look. On your way there, if you feel wild enough to do so, listen to the absolutely amazing self titled Fever Ray album. Fever Ray is the solo project of Karin Dreijer Andersson from The Knife. Her melodic voice lilts over heavy drums and dark synth. "If I Had a Heart", the first single from Fever Ray, is the kind of up beat song you would listen to while setting an ex-lover's posessions on fire. It'll help build the brood in you that is quintessential to pulling off this daring trend.