The Natural Goth

I express interest in many genres of fashion, but I always return to my style roots: comfortable, grounded, somewhat playful and ethnic-inspired.

I went to a Filipino fair a year ago and came across Woven Culture, a local, independent clothing boutique specializing in natural fibers and One Love.

I bought a green crochet tank top from them, though I wish I could’ve afforded their dresses at the time.

Oddly enough, I find comfort in wearing black. It’s a nice fall-back when my style juices are tapped out and I’m looking for something classic to wear. That’s why I’ve been particularly attracted to Rodarte’s Spring 2010 line and it’s mixture of natural ruggedness and futuristic leathers.

Style.com wrote:

This collection, which married primitivism to the sisters’ ongoing interest in futurism, was one of Rodarte’s most fully realized. If the silhouettes were familiar, the awe-inspiring construction of the garments represented the apotheosis of the techniques—in knitwear, printing, draping, and pastiche—that the Mulleavys have been refining season after season. Or, as Laura put it: “We ruined everything.” In other words, they aged, painted, burned, shredded, sandpapered, and otherwise destroyed all of the materials—including grungy scraps of plaid, plastic, cheesecloth, wool cobweb, crystals, macramé, leather, and more—until they bore only traces of what they had been originally.

What an awesome way to articulate deconstruction! And I’m particularly attracted to the variety of textures they used. It’s a concrete portrayal of all the different layers and textures, if you will, of the human condition. While soft and free-flowing like the draped skirts, people are also rough around the edges. Honest, grounded, yet tough as nails.

The idea that someone could “be scarred and still beautiful” was the collection’s leitmotif, and it was about as far from some banal notion of “tribal fashion” as you could get. So where did this hallucination originate? A trip to Death Valley, and a corresponding obsession with singed land (which there is sadly too much of in California lately), sparked the sisters’ imagination.”

A-ma-zing. I can see remnants of singed land in the pattern of this dress. There’s a Matrix sort of feel when it’s combined with the symbols painted on the models’ arms (another review suggested inspiration originated from Maori tribes). I can almost see myself constructing a replica of this outfit using scrap material that I have. Only problem is, skill is what separates Rodarte’s artfully constructed garments and draping from my most likely haphazard attempts at couture.

Again, DIY inspiration using shredded material and artful draping.

I posted this picture cuz I’m tickled by the bodice and how it clings precariously to the model’s breasts in gothic array. It’s a mystery, how it stays put, although it could be explained away by double-sided garment tape or body glue of some sort.

They look like warriors, Amazon women who could be sex kittens and just as easily kick your ass. Perhaps it’s a reflection of a persona that I would love to embrace and feel confident enough to portray on a daily basis. I will settle for following Rodarte on a seasonally basis and living vicariously through their masterpieces. *sigh*

That somehow evolved into a tale, part Mad Max, part Tim Burton, of a woman burned alive who is transformed into a California condor (you begin to appreciate Gordon’s point). Forced to scavenge for existence in a barren, war-torn landscape, she pieces together her attire from rags that, as Laura Mulleavy pointed out, only serve to expose her wounds. It’s not exactly a good-night story—but it’s a powerful one, and it was expertly told to a rapt and ever more adoring audience.”

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