When I was a wee goth lass, in high school, my look featured two main themes: innerwear as outerwear, and fanciful Victorian/Stevie-Nicks-ish gowns. Given that I was high-schooling in hot hot Florida, the less long sleeved outfit usually prevailed, i.e., slips as dresses. I have to admit it was a look I stole from my friend’s cool goth older sister, who had the bottom part of her dyed-black hair shaved off and had a labret piercing and was always wearing two slips layered whenever I saw her – whether chilling at home or dancing at the local gothic discotheque, she always wore her gothic finery. I started to collect slips immediately and basically made them my very own school uniform. Thrift stores in Florida are chock full of mint condition vintage slips, and I pick a few up every time I go for a visit; a lady can never have too many slips, after all. I rarely work that particular look any more, but I’ve never lost my love of the goth/lingerie look, often throwing a waist cincher or corset over a dress, or occasionally (very occasionally) wearing a body suit – just a body suit (did I mention that’s only very occasionally?).
Elkin is a label that showed its first collection last spring for the A/W 2011 season. Two lingerie loving, literary minded sisters joined forces to create the line, which they call Gothic Romance – a nod to some of their favorite literary works (and to mine, not so coincidentally). It’s neither simply lingerie, nor just innerwear that can be worn as outerwear (by the daring among us) – but something beyond.
From left to right: Bronte top in raven; Bones top in raven.
From left to right: Dove dress in wine; Rosemary dress in raven.
From left to right: Eyre romper in clove; Z dress in peony.
From left to right: Sharpe shorts in antique lace and Tamerlane top in gauze; Z slip in peony and Daphne panty in raven.
Photos via Elkin (you can also find their reading list and playlist on their website)
In addition to some adorable Rosemary’s Baby-esque baby doll dresses that wouldn’t even make your grandmother look twice, they’ve created these innerwear-like pieces, presenting them layered with other pieces in such a way as to be firmly within the realm of appropriate street wear, if not quite Sunday family dinner wear. Might seem a little funny to be swooning over scant clothing with fall coming on, but that’s the thing about cold weather – you can wear those gorgeous overcoats on the mean streets and the creepy subways and take them off at your destination to reveal whatever scant clothing you’d like to be wearing. It’s almost like you have to dress more conservatively in the summer because it’s too hot to cover up on the way to where you’re going!
While we’re on the subject of lingerie, I’d be remiss not to mention La Perla’s Roaring collection and Yes Master’s Glamery collection, as much to note the beauty of the pieces in the collection as to admire the accompanying campaign photos.