I get it to a certain extent. This can come in handy for any new comer. For an Elder Goth like me, whom I like to think I have a pretty good knowledge on the subculture and knows how to dress goth, well, I used some of the advice for inspiration. I didn't bother so much with the how to guides, mind you but I love looking at people's outfits. I still do to this day. I admit, I even love clothing hauls on Youtube because I like seeing shit other people got! I like seeing how other's mix-match their clothes, what accessories they use and how. Sometimes, I get inspired to do my own thing. Sometimes, I may think something looks cool but decide it isn't for me. I never used these as means to mirror what these people were wearing, I just used it for my OWN ideas. There are many youtubers or bloggers that I simply ADORE but I wouldn't want to dress like they do. That's just me.
There are a few downsides to these guides/outfit posts unfortunately:
Some of us are afraid that looking goth is the only part of being goth. I admit, sometimes, I am afraid of this happening too but I think if people are genuinely interested in something, it tends to stick around. Or if they are like me it goes away but comes back! For me personally, when I was a teenager, I was labeled a Goth without knowing exactly what a Goth was. I got curious and decided to participate in the subculture for the hell of it and I got hooked!
It can be over-done. How many how to guides and wardrobe essential articles do we need? How many more subsets do we need? (Nu-Goth, Pastel Goth, etc.) No wonder some of us are afraid that goth is becoming simply a fashion without anything else to supplement it. In my opinion, if it means anything, it kinda takes away from the fun experimental years. You know, like some of us had a Mall Goth phase? I used to do my makeup like The Crow and even used Halloween makeup! I laugh at it now and to be honest, I have some pretty fond memories, embarrassing, yes, but they are fond memories nonetheless. In fact, I sometimes even regret throwing away the old photographs! I like to think that by experimenting with clothes, I learned about what worked for me and what didn't. Back when I was younger, I went out to clubs and saw what other people were wearing. I got my inspiration from there - which leads to, outfit posts can be a great source for those who are not as fortunate as I was to grow up in the city!
When I came back to goth in my early thirties, I made a few embarrassing mistakes. What looked good on my twenty year old self (before baby weight no less) did not necessarily look good in my thirty year old post baby body. I also work in an office. I want people to take me seriously. It is kinda hard for people to do so when I look like a 16 year old! I wanted something office friendly but showed my Goth side. I don't work in a conservative environment and the first blog that really spoke to me was Meagan's, from Coffin Kitsch. She helped me in those early years because a lot of her clothing is so beautiful and elegant. She reflects a lot on the style I wanted to portray at that time. She was a lifesaver and a huge inspiration for me. I was used to super toned down corporate (black dress pants, nice top, pointy boots was my go to look) and now I had a chance to up it a little. Meagan's blog helped me "up" it without risking any workplace infractions. Don't get me wrong, there were other corp goth blogs around at that time but personally, while they were inspirational, I found them too conservative for my office environment.
I think the Internet can be a good thing - to a certain point. As much as I make fun of Health, Pastel, Nu Goth, I think perhaps, I shouldn't be so closed minded about these styles and just take a peek at what they are wearing. Perhaps I can do something fun and creative on my own by taking their inspiration?
I am by no means trying to imply that Goth is simply a style. We have a very rich heritage that I whole heatedly embrace. I love the music, I love visiting cemeteries and I love to read. I think it is equally important to participate in the movement as well as to dress the part - something, thanks to my chronic migraines, I have not had the chance to do much of in the past. I am hopeful this will soon change!
I guess what I am trying to say, just like when I came back to Goth in my early thirties, I will soon be in the process of rebuilding my wardrobe all thanks to my weight loss goals! Luckily for me, many items can be altered to fit my new body size but I do plan on buying AND DIYing some new items too. Some of the fashion sites (re: nu-goth) that I often scoffed at are inspiring me to push myself a little further and to be more creative with my own personal style. Perhaps I can find some inspiration there? I think we should be using these as inspiration rather the be-all end-all Uber Goth look and do what everyone else is doing. Thanks but no thanks, I don't need anymore advice on how to create a fishnet shirt out of an old pair of tights and I don't want Siouxsie makeup either. Show me YOUR style! What makes YOU goth?