26 December 2008

crystal spider brooches

One of the very first things I started to play with was creating fimo spiders. I still love the idea and you wouldn't believe how far I-ve arrived! I-m very proud to show the last ones I-ve made. The crystal one has over 140 tiny crystal rhinestones I-ve incrustated one by one and then was finished with a layer of acrylic. It is for sale on my website (theblackwardrobe.com) for £15
here is the link: http://theblackwardrobe.com/product/big-spider-brooch-12

14 December 2008

My flyers

Here are two pics of my flyers. I've forgotten to mention the artists names who made posible these beautiful pictures! (Here's the link, if you want to have a look)

Photography: Ian Mountain
Make-up: Laura Corcoran
Hair stylism: Rachel Flaherty

Please, have a look at my website and let me know what you think! My items are also availabe at the Rose and Anchor boutique, in Liverpool.

08 December 2008

Steampunk, ever heard of it?

If you are into victorianesque, you might have already heard of Steampunk.
If you are into Jules Verne or any other "visionaire" work you might be a fanatic of it.
I had never heard of it until I reached, by curiosity, a myspace site, owned by "The Girls of Steampunk".
Steampunk is a subgenre of fantasy and speculative fiction that came into prominence in the 1980s and early 1990s. The term denotes works set in an era or world where steam power is still widely used—usually the 19th century, and often set inVictorian era, England—but with prominent elements of either science fiction or fantasy, such as fictional technological inventions like those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or real technological developments like the computer occurring at an earlier date. Other examples of steampunk contain alternate history-style presentations of "the path not taken" of such technology as dirigibles or analog computers; these frequently are presented in an idealized light, or a presumption of functionality.
Steampunk is often associated with cyberpunk
and shares a similar fanbase and theme of rebellion, but developed as a separate movement (though both have considerable influence on each other). Apart from time period and level of technological development, the main difference between cyberpunk and steampunk is that steampunk settings usually tend to be less obviously
dystopian (?? no idea what the context means) than cyberpunk, or lack dystopian elements entirely.
Various modern utilitarian objects have been modded
by individual craftpersons into a pseudo-Victorian mechanical "steampunk" style, and a number of visual and musical artists have been described as steampunk.
(text taken from Wikipedia) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steampunk

Basically, in my opinion, Steampunk seems to be about giving a retro feel to objects, mainly digital/electronic. But not the usual 20th retro feel but victorian look. The best resume about Steampunk I've found so far is on thesteampunkhome.blogspot.com
"I believe that Steampunk is more than just brass and watchparts. It's finding a way to combine the past and the future in an aesthetic pleasing yet still punkish way. It's living a life that looks old-fashioned, yet speaks to the future. It's taking the detritus of our modern technological society and remaking it into useful things. Join me as I search for items for my house that combine the scientific romanticism of the Victorians with our real present and imagined future."

25 November 2008

Siren evening gown

If you are looking for a "look-at-me" dress for this christmas or just for a very glamouours night. I think you might LOVE! this dress. It's been for sale on the boutique since last week and I think the retail price is around £95.
It's completely elastic. Made with jersey (medium thick, not see-through, 100%acrylic) and gorgeous european lace (from Nottingham), I don't where exactly from, as the mill has closed down so now this fabric has become a little treasure. The neck is finished with satin at the back, and the middle panel on the bust and waist is gathered. It is high-waisted with long puff sleeves.
Size? The same size as all my dresses, medium/large.
(87cms bust, 70cms waist, 95cms hips). But it stretches very widely so if you are slightly wider, don't worry because it would still fit you like a glove (that's the brilliant thing about elastic fabrics).
Here's the boutique address and phone number:
66 Wood st.
L1 4AQ-Liverpool
(0151 7073590)

18 November 2008

"Gothic Britain", part3 - Spiders

My apologies for not having updated the blog for sooooo long. Well, I just hope there will still be any readers out there...

Well, I have a couple of very interesting pictures from Liverpool. Although they are very old pictures (from the summer) I thought that I should still show them.

As everyone knows, Liverpool is the city of culture, this year, so lots of different shows and attractions have been held over there, specially in the summer. Two of them were of a very arachnic nature!
My most prefered one is this beautiful massive! cobweb, as you can see on the first picture. It glows beautifully in the dark and the spider (which is on the center of it) changes its colours while glowing at the same time.
The second arachnic attraction was a very impressive yellow robot-spider that was as high as a hole building. This godzilla-like spider, was driven by a group of men on the top of the head. It walked down the main streets of Liverpool and then it dissappeared inside the Mersey tunnel. No-one has ever seen it again....

04 November 2008

Vampira mini scultpure

I'm a fanatic of Vampira. So I was more than ecstatic when I found out about this little sculpture of her. The pics are amazing. They really captured the "cadaveric" aspect of the character.
Here's the link

28 October 2008

Make-up and hairstyle tips....are you too pale for the usual make-up?

Lots of people got excited with the new make-up range, designed by red-head Nicola Roberts, from Girls Aloud. It was a matter of time that this woman will ditch the fake tan. (I´ve heard horror stories about fake tan: brown bed-sheets....water from the shower coming out completely brown, stains between toes and fingers, stains on clothes....Horrible!). I will never understand it. Specially in red-heads or freckled people. It just looks stupid. It´s so obvious that is fake and is not the natural tone of their skin. Besides, fake tan makes skin look older and it really emphasizes the wrinkles! So, be careful, ladies!

I´ve also noticed that since Nicola ditched her fake tan, she has updated her wardrobe, as well. Instead of opting for "super-sexy-I-think-I´m-Beyonce" foxy looks, she seams to adopt more classy and elegant ones, which I think is great. Also, She´s dyed her hair into a more red-dish tone which is been dyed into pink. She looks like a lady. A local version of Nicole Kidman and Cate Blanchet.

If you are still desperate to find the range, here are some links:



19 October 2008

Gothic hair-styles looks for the office

At some point, we all grow up and tend to distance ourselves from the teenage looks, I think you know where I´m getting to...Yes! Sophisticated grown up look or straight raven-hair do?

Some people like it (easy, sleek and simple) other people just find it boring and teenage. I am between both options, sometimes can look very sexy, when it´s done properly, otherwise, It makes me look like Monalisa. However, other times, it looks a bit dull and boring.
There´s a new trend that it´s been hitting for over a couple of years now, which is the intermix between Goth and Rockabilly (it sounds bizarre but they ´re somehow related, just look at fashion´s history books and you will know why). You can find the local versions of this interesting mix such as in "bobs" (yes, the Victoria´s Beckham hair do but in a sleek raven-black version) or in longer lengths with fringe (very Betty Page)

But the last branch or "evolution" that it has come out from the Gothic subculture is the retro-burlesque one. Sometimes, intermixed/blended with Rockabilly, as well!
I´m one of these people who strongly believe that ms. Von Teese was the one who started it all, back to her gothic days with Marilyn -teenage idol- Manson.
It´s a very classy, old Glamour look. Very high maintenance! Which makes not suitable for everyone but it has that intriguing dark feel to it that makes it irresistible for those girls who are in the alternative circles. It works very well on all hair colours but specially, with black! I think it really gives a bit of fresh hair to the sometimes dull, straight-raven hair-do, don´t you think?

11 October 2008

New dress!

I'm thrilled to present one of the last looks I've just created. The satin shawl collar dress.
It's a three-quarter length dress with puff long sleeves. Satin shawl collar with pleats detailing on the sides. Feminine and flattering, it frames the neckline in a beautiful way as well as it emphasizes the dramatic shape of the shoulders. The highwaisted skirt hugs the figure and it elongates it. It's made with completely stretch lace. Hope you like it. It's for sale on my etsy shop!
All prices on Etsy are in dollars (because it´s an american website), so if you are in Europe and are interested in anything and want to pay in british pounds or Euros. Please, contact me!

07 October 2008

My etsy.com shop

I'm thrilled to announce that my etsy shop is been opened for a while but it has had stock for sale since yesterday! Not all my collection is been posted yet, so please keep an eye on this blog and the etsy shop because I will post new items as long as I do them.
Please, have a look at it:
feedback is very welcome!


30 September 2008

Spider brooches

More spider brooches! I've been doing fimo spider brooches for my Black Widow collection. I like to decorate them with crystals (swarovski, mainly). However, the last time I was in Spain, I bought some gorgeous crystals and they're impossible to find! As you can see, they are massive (over 3cms long and wide) and they shine like mirrors, specially the grey colour.
If anyone has any ideas where to find them, please, let me know.

29 September 2008

Are you up for the Rock-Tomboy look or the diva look? PART 2

As I said in the part 1 of these mini-post/series, the Gothic trend has been segmented into two looks: Rock-Tomboy look and Diva Look.
I´m going to explain what the Diva look is about, this season.

Unlike the Rock look, the Diva look is about sofistication, feminity and glamour. There´s no better fabric that represents all those atributes than Lace. Yes! Lace, lace, lace! It´s usually worn as an evening fabric but all those Goths or Goth-lovers out there know that it can be a gorgeous fabric for day-life as well! (Click on the "gothic fashion tips" tag, for inspiration and ideas).

The Gothic/Diva look is about going back to couture, well dressed and groomed look. There´s no space for any kind of androginity in here!

Well tailored looks that accentuate the feminine figure, very feminine and sensual fabrics (lace, silk, chiffon) mixed with wintery and structured fabrics such as tweed, tartan or wool mix. I personally LOVE! this look. It suits every single body shape, if you have the curves, they will be accentuated. If you don´t, they will be created by the mix of textures, fabrics and the volume of the siluettes.
One tip, if you really want to add an extra bit of drama to your look, wear lace tights.
They look amazing and I´ve seen very cheap ones, this season.

25 September 2008

Are you up for the Rock-Tomboy look or the diva look? PART 1

Everybody agrees that the mainstream has decided to appropiate the goth look for itself, this winter. However, I´ve realized that the idea has been taking two different aesthetic paths, in the last weeks :

the Rock chic tomboy look (baggy tops, skinny long graceful legs) or the sleek super-femenine diva look (hour glass shape, elegant and groomed look, lots of lace. Very closed to the Cinema noir feel).

The first look is been seen on the Givenchy collection. As you can see on the pics, it has a very 80´s feel. It reminds me more of the New Romantic look than the Gothic: soft layers, ruffles, bows, black and cream pallette. There are some elements that I like and I dislike in this look.

I like it because it brings back one of the few beautiful things of the Eighties and adds some kind of interest and mix of textures to the outfit instead of keeping it just black. I like the detail of necklaces made of chains (something very "old", I know, but I hadn´t seen it for a long while) and I like the combo black-cream as an alternative option to the classical and sometimes, predictable, black and white.

What I don´t like of this look? You might have already guessed it. It´s not suitable for anyone who is under 180cms tall -6 foot high, for those british/american readers ;)- AND doesn´t have the legs for it. Otherwise, it would make you look like a shiny elephant. Or a cheap prostitute, from the Eighties....
Also, after coming to this initial and basic problem the next dilemma is:

How to wear it? Well, if you add to the "equation": leggings + shiny fabric. The solution is unpredictable.

I think that the trick is to wear it with something plain that doesn´t try to out-shine the already-shiny leggings. That means:
option A.
plain non-shiny top or shirt which can be monochrome or printed. It can be fitted (if you have the body for it) or baggy, which will cover your waist and bum (this silouette is ideal if you have the perfect legs but not so-perfect torax, yes, I mean the belly. The trick works, believe me.)

However, I have to say that this look is not suitable for people whose shoulders are wider than their hips because this look will accentuate them even more.

Option B. the risky one but the most gorgeous one! I would love to wear this shinny leggins with a gorgeous black lace top. It´s edgy, feminine and gothic! Obviously, it´s not suitable for everyone, again....
Here´s an example.

Gorgeous lace top, 65 pounds. Handmade by me, The Black Wardrobe. You can find it at the Rose And Anchor boutique, in Liverpool. (00 44) 0151 707 3590

Shinny skinny pants, 65 pounds from Topshop. (You can find more different ones and with prices which can be cheaper or more expensive, in other mainstream retailers)

Ankle lace boots. (These gorgeous pair is not from this season, sorry. Although, they´re very trendy at the minute and you can still find them in some shops).

12 September 2008

The Black Widow Collection, for sale!

Oh yes! To all my fans out there who have been asking where to get my collection. I´m ecstatic to confim that it will be able to be purchased from tomorrow!

It will go for sale in the Rose And Anchor boutique, in Liverpool. (66 Wood st., L1 4AQ)
If you are interested in anything and can reach the Beatles city, here´s the shop´s phone number: (00 44) 0151 707 3590

Alternatively, for all of those who don´t live near the NorthWest or not even in England, Please be patient, as I will launch an e-boutique the next week. I will keep you informed.
Thanks for your interest, again.

09 September 2008

Who said Black is boring?

Somehow, I came across a very interesting article on a fashion blog (galadarling.com) called "Fashion Help for Recovering Goths". Very interesting article, useful and it brilliantly summarized colour theory for all those who don´t know what colour would suit them. My blog is about black and dark, obviously, it´s mainly aimed at Goths and other people who share the same "dark" and gothic passions. However, that doesn´t mean that black should always be strictly on its own. It can go with any other colour or combinations -hence the advantage of working with the "no-colour" ;)

The thing is, the main reasons and features the blogger points about black are a bit arguable, (opinions from readers are welcome, by the way):

"it's very easy to wear", "Black goes with black".
It might look easy to wear because the lack of colour makes it suitable for any kind of colour combination. However, black has also shades (a chiffon blouse will not have the same shade/light as a a cotton or jersey one). I´m sure only people like us -who wear always black- are aware of this detail but if you don´t wear 100% black, please try to dress head to toe, and you will see what I mean. Also, black is a colour that fades away after washing so this contrast it becomes more obvious through the time.
"It hides stains".
Saying that is like admitting vampires exist (which is another urban legend some people still seem to believe in). Black doesn´t hide stains. It DOESN´T. I know this as a "black-wearer" and as fashion designer. Not only shows stains it also shows sewing mistakes (eg, seams that are not straight).

"It can make you look very plain in a way that hot pink, royal blue or turquoise never will".
Unless you are wearing a one-fabric outfit, Black doesn´t make you look more plain that any other mono-colour look. As I´ve just said, the different fabrics and cuts! make each garment shine in a different way, proving how rich and attractive this colour still is. I do agree that wearing a bright colour (on its own or combined with another one) will make you out-stand from the crowd because of its brightness, whereas black it shades you away in a subtle way and this takes me to the next topic...

"People wear black because they are comfortable in it. If you feel at odds with the way you look or lack confidence, black can be the great concealer, a fabulous security blanket", "it makes you look slimmer".
Black, like anything, is a "double weapon". As I´ve just said, black will not make you out-stand from the crowd because of its light but it can still make you out-stand from the crowd. If that isn´t true, how come you can still see a Goth who is on the other side of the busy road? The beauty of Black is its mystery, its game of revealing and hiding at the same time. Human eyes are very easy to mislead with optical tricks. Black doesn´t make you dissappear and it doesn´t make you look slimmer. What it does is to define your silouette; by having a black dark stain in front of your eyes, you look for the edges, the curves...the silouette! That´s why people believe it makes them look slimmer. Have you ever seen a big person wearing 100% black. Does she/he looked slimmer? No. The best way to look slimmer is by playing with shades (one colour or several within the outfit), cuts and fabrics. Wearing a hole black "blanket" will make you look like a tent. Also, I have to say (although this is just a very personal opinion of mine), it takes a very strong independent mind to wear head to toe black. Usually, individuals who wear head-to-toe black are people who want to make an statement of independence and personality. Unfortunately, the society still have problems to "swallow" that...and I´m not just referring to Goths...:)
If you´re interested in how to combine your black wardrobe with other colours and shades but don´t have a clue which would suit you. Have a look at the original blog.

05 September 2008

Make-up and hairstyle tips....how not to go to the office, despite this weather

This weather is crap. Although I try my best to look gorgeous and groomed, this bloody wind and rain that has swept the hole of England, it took my groomed hair with it.
I came out of my house today in the morning........a couple of hours later, I looked like I had been attacked by the dogs from the council estate from down the road.
I know some people love wearing the old 80's hairdo (massive hair-combing, Robert-Smith-like), which is perfect for dull, straight hair. But my hair is curly, the minimal shake can make it look like I just came out of a fight.
So, is this weather forcing us, somehow, to re-adopt 80s hairstyle? Maybe. Goodbye to gorgeous black smokey eyes? Never! but we might not be allowed to get into the bus or the office.
You decide. We all are in the ennui mood (a.k.a "fucked"). So, try your best to keep everything on place with wax (or glue, if necessary) or do your catwoman impression at the office. They might promote you....If the boss is a "he"....who likes kinky stuff.

20 August 2008

Summer is gone...let´s get in the mood, the usual "ennui" mood, I mean.

Summer is gone....(well, at least in North-West England). So we are more than ready to embrace and dress our pale skin with decadent black clothes.
It´s been raining for days, gone are the days when I was thinking of going to do camping in the middle of Yorkshire....I´m not going in this weather, If I wanted to get soaked, I can perfectly thow myself to the river Mersey. It would be cheaper....
This weather really takes you down, to the depth of boredom and "ennui" :)

However, for all those goth enthusiasts, we are all spoilt of choices for our wardrobe! I don´t know where to start....satins, laces, pvc accesories, black make-up or even a very disturbing dark plum (perfect alternative to black) and black, black, black! For all those who love to dress in a more aggresive, industrial or even old-fashioned punk way!, I´ve seen "wet" black leggins everywhere! (What the hell is that, you must be wondering?) Well, I mean those leggins that look like leather. They are gorgeous with an oversize jumper but only suitable for skinny legs, unfortunately.....:(

15 August 2008

More corporate gothic pieces: cobweb dress

As I said, I'll be posting pics of my work so you all can see it and express your opinions as well! So far, no-one has commented anything yet.

This particular one is very very retro, more retro than gothic, I think. It's a fitted dress with a extremely flattering low neck with darts on the bust. It really emfasizes the bust and the cap sleeves are made of tulle-lace. Nice......isn´t? Gorgeous for a night out, an office cocktail party or even for work.

12 August 2008

Corporate Goth or as some people may call it "adult Goth"

I've already said on the blog that Goth keeps crawling back to the surface of fashion every single winter but it always ends up in the dark, difuminating its black shadows until it dissappears from mainstream eyes. This winter, is back again. More obvious than ever (due to the current economical depressive mood), I mean, less romantic and more sleek and front-forward. Strong but balanced with just the right statement-pieces and, most important of all, super wearable. Which is something that traditional Goth doesn´t offer but Corporate Goths still need to achieve.

By typing "gothic chic" on google, I came across this article on the Daily Telegraph´s website. It´s quite old (2005) but that is irrelevant as we all know trends come and go but needs will always be there. It´s interesting as a reference, if you are looking for idea to update your black wardrobe for work or any other daily situations..... Enjoy.

"Looking scary, looking good"

Very occasionally, a trend emerges that seeps through all areas of culture, from film and music to interiors and beauty. One such trend this season is the glamorous, new image of gothic style.
Marc Jacobs kicked off the new mood with
a catwalk show packed with gothic references, from the Edward Scissorhands soundtrack to the long black skirts, velvet-trimmed dresses and dark Edwardian silhouettes.
Last week, Tim Burton, the king of the modern gothic movie,
released his latest macabre romance, The Corpse Bride, while black interiors - including matt black walls and glossy black accessories - are the most interesting new home trend. Slick black nail polish is currently considered to be ├╝ber-chic, and Marilyn Manson, the scary-faced goth rocker, was in the front row at the Paris fashion shows last month.

However, gothic is difficult to wear. All those bleak colours and heavy silhouettes can be unflattering, and head-to-toe sinister will make you look more like a deranged teen than a mysterious modern goth. It's a look that needs a light touch and a hint of elegance to make it work.

Black velvet
Sumptuous dark velvet is a grown-up way to approach the gothic look. (...)

Lace blouses
All those dark colours need to be broken up with softer layers and lighter colours. A delicate lace blouse contrasts well with black velvet or wool.

Jet jewellery
Simple Victorian pendants look great with Edwardian-style clothes, but jet - especially faceted jet - is probably the most dramatic jewellery to wear with a gothic look. Erickson Beamon's Sleepy Hollow collection includes chandelier earrings with jet and hermatite (from £150; 020 7259 0202) and jet lariat-style necklaces (from £350).

Lace-up boots
Marc Jacobs showed much of his collection with black socks and flat black patent shoes. However, lace-up boots with heels are more flattering.

source: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/fashion/main.jhtml?xml=/fashion/2005/10/26/efgoth26.xml

10 August 2008

What a beauty...

I'm not an obsessive about cars...In fact, I can't drive and I don't have clue what a torque is...
However, it's rare when you have the chance to see a vintage car in person...
This gorgeous beauty was just in front of the new arena in Liverpool. By its appearance, I assume is from the 1920s, if you look closer, it has a piece you have to turn over in order to start the engine!
It was available to rent for special occassions, such weddings but the brochure didn't say the price. Shame...

07 August 2008

More corporate gothic pieces: panelled lace top

Here comes the second of my new pieces....
Do you remember my strap-less top?
You can have a look at this slide-show

Well, this one is super femenine and it reminds me of those retro lingerie bustiers...
It has lace panels and two chiffon straps that come out from the lowest point of the centre, they really accentuate the shoulders and also, emphasize the bust. Beautiful....
Unlike the cobweb top, this top is not completely finished yet...
Hope you like it!

04 August 2008

I´m back...with more corporate gothic pieces!

Here, I´m again....sorry for the delay.

I´ve been working in new pieces to add to the Black Widow´s collection. So I will start posting pics of each garment in the next following days...

Here´s the first one.

I was very impressed by the amount of interest in the cobweb top so I added a new variation that I hope people will like too.

24 July 2008

Shantung black dress

This is my latest commissioned piece of work. A friend of mine asked me to make her a dress for a wedding. She gave a beautiful piece of black shantung with orange and coppery lines on it. So I decided to play with them. It's a plain "A" line maxi-dress, sleeveless with a lovely front piece on the chest, it also has a pleat in front of the chest, which I think is lovely and adds character to the top and it contributes to elongate it optically.
On the hole, I really like the overall folk look of this dress. It's very simple but it still looks sumptuous due to the brilliant combination of golds and black. I have to say that it's a very thin shantung, I don't like to work with it: it doesn´t drape, too heavy, it wrinkles amazingly easy! (although it´s very easy to iron) and makes anyone look middle-aged but in a bad way.


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