Wednesday, November 17, 2010

D.I.Y: Arm Warmers For Beginners

Go to any rave, industrial or goth club and you are likely to find people with arm warmers. I'm always amazed when I see these strips of fabric sold in stores. Not because they aren't practical; they really do warm your arms. For those of us who use our arms a lot while dancing, either to show strong, quick arm motions or to float towards the air in slow swirling spirals, arm warmers are also a fantastic accessory.

The great thing about arm warmers is of all the things you try to D.I.Y. (do it yourself), this is probably the one thing you can do that will turn out correctly, is easy to fix if it doesn't quite turn out correct and is probably the cheapest thing you won't scream about messing up if you have to chuck in the trash.

First, if this is your first D.I.Y project, the best thing is to take a pair of old socks, preferable one with a hole in the toe. You are going to cut this part off and this gives you the opportunity to "recycle" something instead of throwing it in the trash.

Please make sure the socks are clean. This seems obvious, but you never know.

What you need: Socks. Scissors. Any kind of adornment i.e. safety pins, glitter.

1. If you want thumb catches (the little part of the warmer that fits over the thumb) in short socks, you will need to cut off right above the ankle part of the sock. If you have long socks or don't want a thumb catch (it's easier to keep the warmer in place with the catch, but I find it gets a little, um, iffy with sanitary issues--make sure you pull this part away from the skin and roll down if you need to shake a lot of hands or use the restroom), cut off the entire foot area.

2. If you want a thumb catch, stick you hand in the cut off sock and see where your thumb is. Cut a hole in the sock there. On short socks with a thumb catch, cut the hole where the ankle part is.

3. You can add in safety pins or spikes or glitter or cut holes in the socks for added detail.

4. Wear. If you don't want a thumb catch, just wear.

This works especially well if are in the deathrock or industrial scenes because you don't have to worry so much about being even with the cutting.

Victorian Goths, I recommend you splurge on a nice pair of lace gloves. You can usually get a fairly cheap pair (think under $10) on the internet.This are easy to clean and you will always get usage out of them.

Also, if you have an old pair of long gloves, like the kind for prom, and you aren't doing anything with them, you can cut the tips off to make a nice fingerless arm warmer. Be wary of sanitary issues with these.

Hopefully, this will save you $10-$25 dollars. Have fun and enjoy wearing something you made yourself, even if it's just something small. I have definitely gotten positive comments at goth clubs on a pair of faux red velvet gloves I transformed into fingerless arm warmers.

Nifty Site I like: Cryoflesh

This shopping site is going to appeal most to cybergoths. I have not bought anything from it, but it's glow wear is unique and seems more complicated than going to the dollar store and buying glow sticks and flashing bracelets or necklaces.

Again, I have not shopped with this company so I can't vouch for the quality of received products or shipping process. The products are a bit pricey and I do think some of these items would be easy to make "knock-offs". Again, you can find glow sticks at the dollar store.

If it's between a bill or shopping do pay the bill and go the dollar store route. Also, if you are just trying out cybergoth to see if you like it, you may want to go cheaper.

Either way, I find myself returning to Cryoflesh to ooh at the wonderful glowing things. If this is your style or if you are intrigued by the style, check this site out.

Cryoflesh  I recommend the  face mask section labeled "Mask". Have fun!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Getting Started


This is blog that will explore some aspects of various subcultures. I would love for people to engage in the discussions or reviews posted.

And, yes, I am a black girl goth. We exist! :) I embraced being a goth at the age of 19. I am now 27. Also, I am always amused and disappointed when people assume that all goths are depressed (depression is a serious mental health condition and should not be passed off as a "phase" or "teenage symptom". Some goths are depressed people. Not all depressed people are goths.)  and teenagers (again, I'm 27 and hang out with goths that are my age or older- also, many goths hang out at clubs and most clubs require you to be at least 21 so I'm still unclear where this logic comes from). Many goths are parents and DO laugh and have jobs and have a variety of ideas about religion(s).

While I welcome Gothic Subculture 101 questions, this blog will focus on reviews and commentary and will assume the reader knows a little bit about gothic and other alternative cultures.

Every once in awhile, I may address the subculture of goth from a social justice point of view (pointing out misogynistic, racist, fatphobia, anti-lgbt issues and classism). I hope everyone, including myself, will use careful consideration when engaging in these conversations.

Again, welcome!