31 May 2008

"Gothic Britain", part2 - Cemeteries...

British cemeteries are SO different from spanish ones. I once read that british cemeteries were conceived as places to have a quiet walk....a place to relax not only for the dead but also for the undead...I don´t know if this is true but I totally agree with it. British cemeteries are relaxing, there are only tombstones lying around, with a huge margin of space between each other.

Very different are spanish cemeteries indeed. Cemeteries are little cities or "urbis" in the middle of a city populated by alive souls. When you get into a spanish cemetery, the first thing that claims your attention are the caotic scenography: tombs of any size lying everywhere, in front of you, behind you, both sides...simple ones and grandiose ones whose owners -now dead- seem to try to oustage the others from the Death just to let everyone know they WERE someone important in life.
I don´t know if this a catholic thing or is just one of my stupid theories, but the fact of believing so passionately in the after-life is what drives people to see the graveyard as the "second home". In fact, in some places of Spain it is tradition that the relatives go often to the graveyard to clean it and look after it.....
Another building which is quite particular in spanish or catholic graveyards is the panteon (that ashtonishing building, often of a gothic or neo-gothic style that helds the tomb inside) these panteon can be big enough to be a shoe-box/flat!
The next time I go home, I will take pics of the tombs, there are some stunning ones!

By the way, every time I think of cemeteries, this quote comes to my mind:

“The fence around a cemetery is foolish, for those inside can't get out and those outside don't want to get in.” (Arthur Brisbane, american editor and writer 1864-1880)

30 May 2008

The busy life of a Corporate Goth...

Corporate Goths have a far more complicated lifestyle than the rest of people. Apart from their "normal-life" social commitments they also have to attend their gothic commitments...

28 May 2008

"Gothic Britain", part1 - Too many black birds

I should really start to do a blog-series called "Gothic Britain". I see so many scary things here that I don´t see in Spain, specially in the sunny, calm, "I-feel-like-I´m-always-on-holidays" Mediterranian. British humour (sarcastic as hell, pesimist, always expecting the disgrace to happen and then smile with the "I knew it" expression on the face, but that would be for another post.. ).

The thing that stunns me every day! is the huge amount of black birds in this country, specially ravens! ravens! Those little tiny black things are not just birds, there´s something deeply dark and disturbing about them (and I´m not talking about colour and how rounded they are). I feel that creepy feeling even more now, after what it happened to me once...Here´s the horror story....Ready?

One day, I was all bored in my livingroom that I decided to have a look what it was going on outside the window. Just in front of it, next to the roses there was a black tiny bird. That thing was viciously killing a little earthworm, hitting it against the mud all over and over again....That little black thing (the bird) realized I was being the witness of such a murder.

The black criature dropped the earthworm from his mouth. Start staring at me, without winking....I carried on watching (it was just a bird, for god´s sake!). But that little rounded black thing kept staring at me. The fear started to take control over me. Oh...god! That vicious thing might fly to the window to peck it down into pieces....like in that Hitchcock's film!

I close the curtains. For a couple of seconds, almost half a minute. I went back to the window, that thing was still staring at me. The earthwomb corpse was still lying on the mud, ignoring that its death really meant nothing for the black bird because he got a fixation for me. I never really shitted on myself that much (if we ignore the time a male swan run after me and my friend because we got too close to the female-she was expecting...Another vicious bird....I will tell that in another post). As I was saying, I never really shitted on myself so much in my life, even more than Tippy Hedren did on the film...(Well, she had so many thing to fear in that film: the birds, the chance of having a geeky daughter who she ended up having, Hitchcock -who was trying to date with her...)
I hope my story will prevent other people to feel threatened by a creepy black bird....

Don´t get confused, that little chubby thing could kill you. Behind all that black they must see you as another Tippy Hedren...

26 May 2008

The picture that inspire The Black Wardrobe

As soon as I saw this picture for the very first time, I fell deeply in love with it. Why?

Well....you know that decadent image of Paris that comes to your mind, before going there and then even deeper once you are in there...A nostalgic dark beauty from a past that hasn´t lasted but it´s still here in the present, fallen into pieces, enchanting our minds with its dramatic and poisoning beauty, hold tight onto the door and window frames, inside the caf├ęs, in the museums, in the illustrations that local artists sell by the Seine.

I deeply fell in love with Paris, it was even better than in the films. While I was walking around the latin quarter I was thinking of the excesses of the bohemian life. The drama of living a caotic yet profilic life of free thoughts, free experimentation, free art!.....

The smile of the model screams joy but there´s something dark on it. Somehow, you can feel the tragedy of living a life without limits: boozing, an unfortunate love (one of many, perhaps), a dry bank balance.....But who woudn´t wish to have had that life? Somehow, it still sounds attractive and death is the final chapter of everyone´s life. "Live like a prince, die like a cockroach"...sneaking through the dark streets, sleeping in lugubrious shoe-boxes -somehow called "flats"- (I wonder how many Londoners or anyone else who lives in a big city indentifies him/her-self with the last sentence). Things haven´t changed too much in 200 years. Some things have become better but the daily traumas are still there... Hope you like my blog´s design, by the way...

24 May 2008

the story behind The Black Widow Collection

I´ve been showing the pics of my collection´s clothes but I think I haven´t explained yet where it all came from and I think that might be of some interest to this blog´s readers....

I´ve always been interested in Goth, (this is not the first time I´ve designed a gothic collection) but before starting the collection I didn´t have a clue what theme I would choose this time.

"A movement in the corner of the room!
And there is nothing I can do when I realise with fright
That the spiderman is having me for dinner tonight!.."

I am a great fan of The Cure (I went to see them in Barcelona, last march) AND I live in a semi victorian house. Why is that relevant? Well, when you live in a building which is over 200yrs old, despite cleaning and looking after the features, the wood, the furnishing.....because everything is SO old and not in such a good condition anymore, spider start doing some home-hunting. On top of that, the heating system is very good in british houses and everybody knows that spiders love to live in a quiet, dark and dry place, very far away from the british weather´s harshness....

I suddenly felt like Robert Smith in the Lullaby video. I was seeing (and I still see) spiders all over the house: in the bath, on the corner of the windows, behind the computer... All kind of sizes (tiny ones, big ones-as big as half of one of my fingers...) Sometimes I used to see something with very long and skinny legs, walking on the wood flooring gracefully as any other femme fatale.....

THE FEMME FATALE (she IS a black widow!)

As many other people, I´ve always been fascinated by the golden age of the silver screen and classic retro glamour in general. Therefore this became the second base of my collection, in fact, if you do a bit of research in fashion Gothic history, you realize that modern female goth look takes its influences from s. XIX (voluptuous figure, small waist and big hips, extremely pale skin...) A classical look that it would be carried on until the second half of the century when bikinis allowed people to go "semi-naked" to the beach and get tanned like prawns.
The black and white cinema enfasized the dramatic silouettes of the female beauties and the pallor of their skins within the b&w shadows, in fact, the make-up artist Max Factor used to apply black make-up! in order to enfasize the facial features over the whiteness of the skin. Extra-long sofisticated dresses that sticked to their bodies like gloves, re-shaped the bodies (as corsets and long skirts had done in the earlier century) making them looking evilishly beautiful and tall: the divas used to show an aparently feminine and fragile look that was semi-covering a strong, and sometimes, maquiavelic character.

Logically, all these features can be applied to the spiders,
especially THE BLACK WIDOW.

Obviously a female criature, seduces, gets what she wants and then gets rid of the poor now useless male subject. As any other old fashion femme fatale, the black widow is a deep shinny black criature with a tiny waist, very voluptuous bottom and long and gracefull legs...
The perfect evil......hated, not only because she gets what she wants but because she shows to be a clever and independent being that happens to be female.... and some men still cannot swallowed the idea of being out-stripped by a woman...
During centuries, the spider has had different meanings among very different cultures. But in the western context, the spider has been linked to Treachery and Death. Seen as a "swindler" or a "destiny´s weaver", the spider has been a symbol of life (due to her ability to create webs and her fertility which has a strong sexual component) but as well, "Death" and "Destruction" because those same webs that she brought to life can take you to death. They are a trap that seem what they are not so you easily fall into them, awaiting for the monster to come for you and kill you with her poison....

22 May 2008

New Brooches

I´ve been doing more experiments with fimo (do you remember my spiders?) Here´s the result. My favourite one is the cat. The base is a mix of black fimo and white pearl but this white pearl turned into pastel pink after "cooking" it in the oven....Despite that, I still like it. The cat has a moustache made with cotton threads. I might add a velvet piece to this brooch, or even a black fimo frame. Don´t know yet.

The second brooch is a black armchair. I think this style of furniture is called "Chesterfield". The buttons are made of fake swarowsky crystals (which are plastic) that melted inside the oven. I like the effect once they´re melted, they look like P.V.C. buttons.

The third brooch is a pirate!!! is a skull made of that same pearlized white fimo (you can see in this one, the pink shade, very clearly) that is on the black piece.

Hope you like them!

18 May 2008

Check out my Slide Show!

Hi everyone! I hadn´t updated the blog for a long while.......The reason: I went to Spain to show my Black Widow Collection. The Black Widow Collection has been my final year´s proyect at Fashion College and I went to defend it in front of the Jury. I suspect they liked it...but you never know. I´ve collected most of the pics, taken on that day and join them in two slide shows. This is the first one. I´m still working on the second one. Coming soon!

If this is the first time you are visiting this blog or just don´t have a clue what the hell I´m talking about, click on the "Black Widow Collection" tag. Enjoy your browsing!

01 May 2008

Gothic make-up tips for everyday....

"How to go as dark as you dare"
This is the title of a make-up tips list published on the ManchesterEveningNews website.
It´s not written by someone who is into Goth (you can tell by comments like: "Don't get spooked into thinking goth equals grunge. Today's trend is uber-glossy, high fashion, and ultra polished".)
Because, the article, in my opinion, portraits Goths as black tacky clowns by associating their looks with Grunge?...Grunge!
Goth is about a sophisticated drama, it IS very theatrical (that´s what the story is about) but you can tame it down without making it look boring.
I´ve picked up two illustrative examples, very different between each other. However, I think they represent the two ways that Goth make-up could be taken to: plain black OR dramatic phantasmagorical colours played with smokes and shades.

Interested in more? Let´s read the tips, then:
"Don't be tempted to emulate the ghostly pale skin effect seen on the catwalk; you'll end up looking like too much like Morticia Adams," Jemma warns."Opt instead for a sheer, luminous and `brightened' skin effect. First, prep and moisturise the skin, followed by a fabulous skin illuminator which `haloes' your face with light, without whitening it."

I agree with that, I keep seeing Goths who seem to have thrown flour to their faces despite being naturally paled....
Not offence but it looks stupid, I´m sorry....

"The extreme catwalk gothic gloss look involves both soft dark, strong eyes and lip colour - but in real life, especially during the day, dramatising both can look disastrously over the top," says Jemma."The key is to `veil' the entire eye from the lid right up to the brow with a wash of subtle colour. Try feminine shades of plum or mauve. Go as dark as you dare."

I COMPLETELY agree with that because I´ve tried it during daylight. The only person who can get away with that look is Robert Smith, I´m afraid. We will have to keep it for the night....

"For statement lips be daring with a lip liner in plum," Jemma advises. "Finish by slicking on a glossy, dark and sumptuous berry shade. Contrast with a `wash' of neutral eye colour."

I MUST add, if you are not tempted by the "wash of neutral eye colour", you can try with smokey eyes in a soft shade of black of grey. It would still look dramatic but not too over-loaded.

"If super-dramatic smokey eyes are on your beauty agenda, try Jemma Kidd Define: Stay-Put Eyeliner (£9), Darphin Eye Pencil in Black (£12), or Avon In A Blink 2-in-1 pencil at £6 (avonshop.co.uk), with eyeliner at one end and powder eyeshadow at the other.Hit the dark goth-style shadows with Tigi Cyberoptics Eyeshadow in Black or Amethyst, £8.95 (tigihaircare.com), The Body Shop Smudger in Burnished Metal (£9), or Bare Escentuals Mystical Eye Quickies at £22 (qvcuk.com). Apply lashings of thick, black mascara using Givenchy Captiv'Eyes Intense Volume Mascara for £17.Alternatively, let your lips do all the talking with B Borscht Lip Cream in deep purple, £8.50 (lush.co.uk), or Jemma Kidd Hi Shine Lip gloss in Currant for £9.50.If you want to go goth from tip-to-toe, paint on some black nail polish to complete your coffin couture look. Try GOSH nail polish in Nero, £5.99, or Barry M Black Nail Paint, £2.95, both at Superdrug".

Hope you liked the article, here´s the link:


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