Saturday, March 23, 2013

Style Inspiration: Gothic Architecture

I've already posted about the wonders of Gothic Architecture and its connection to the Goth scene. However, as I was musing about a post topic for the day, I started wondering about how to incorporate some of the flare of Gothic architecture into our outfits. So, I put together some Polyvore sets and tips for you all. I hope you like them!

Gothic 7

The first and, perhaps, most obvious choice is to feature a Gothic cathedral in full on some part of your clothing. If you are of a Lolita bent, you might be able to find Gothic prints on some skirts and dresses. T-shirts are also a possibility, and tourist t-shirts can be found pretty cheaply on eBay.

Gothic 1

Firstly, pointed arches are iconic of Gothic Architecture, so much so that I accidentally typed "Gothic arches" in this sentence. Tall pointed windows, called lancets, are expansions on this theme. To incorporate Gothic architecture into your outfits, look for any style inspiration that includes pointed arches or pointed windows. This can either be done through a print on the fabric or through the cut of it, especially hem lines.

Gothic 4

Stained Glass, used to provide a kind of mystical atmosphere for the church and visual interest where mosaics were now obsolete, are an excellent element to use in any Gothic Architecture-inspired outfit. To emulate them, reach out beyond just the Goth's ordinary black and look for jewel toned pieces that will punctuate your look with splashes of color. Ruby reds, sapphire blues, emerald greens, topaz yellows, and similar colors will work nicely.

Gothic 3

Gothic architecture aimed for the illusion (if not the fact) of height in their design, and luckily every fashion magazine since circa. forever has suggested the following tip: Vertical lines will help you to mimic the emphasis on height that Gothic architecture aimed for. Avoid anything horizontal, but stripes and details that point upwards (including high heels) will do wonders.

Gothic 5

Christian religious iconography is also typical of Gothic architecture (mostly because Gothic architecture was primarily focused in churches), and not all that uncommon in Goth look. Get out your wrought iron crosses and little angel rings, they'll fit in perfectly into an outfit inspired by Gothic architecture. If you want to avoid using crosses, you can replace this with using the fleur de lis symbol, which is associated with the royal family of France (who were the patrons of many of these Gothic churches.)

Gothic 2

As I mentioned in my previous post, some elements of Gothic cathedral are best described as lacey and spindly. In fact, part of the appeal of Gothic architecture is that some of the structural innovations (such as the flying buttress) enabled the cathedral to look weightless. To mimic this in your look, avoid heavy looking materials like leather and velvet and use lace and chiffon to add a bit of ethereal weightlessness to your look.
Gothic Whatever

If all else fails, just go for a medieval inspired Goth look (I'll forgive you if you're not historically accurate, even looking at thirteenth century fashion plates has me overheating.) While not specifically Gothic, you'll look more than at home in a Gothic cathedral.

Gothic architecture is an excellent source of inspiration for Goths, in my opinion, but I want to know how you all would incorporate Gothic inspiration into your outfits. Are there any other elements you would love to use?


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you! I've been looking for an excuse to make a set with that corset, it's divine.

  2. You called it with the stained glass. It is something I'd add via jewelry mostly. I love all the jewels you featured here.

    1. Thank you! I love the jewelry as well, especially the green skull ring. :)

  3. I would also use the patterns and textures seen in certain cathedrals to find similar fabrics and accessories. Even hints of colour to accentuate the outfit.
    As seen here:
    I could totally wear golden jewellery and a blue dress with golden stars. Perhaps it sounds odd, but I now I feel I will be hunting down such dress.
    I'm certainly inspired by this post it's a very useful source.

    1. If you're looking for more inspiration for that, might I recommend Saint Chappelle? The flamboyant late Gothic style would be perfect inspiration for that style.

  4. Oh have a nice handbag that would fit in these sets.

    1. Yes! I thought about using it but as I'd already used the skirt I thought better of it. It's a delightful bag.

  5. Ahhh I love all those outfits! Where did you find that first dress? It is wonderful.

    1. The first dress is by Moi-meme-Moitie, a Japanese Lolita brand, but it's pretty rare and very expensive. I believe there are reproductions being made of it though.

  6. That first dress is from Moi-meme-Moitie and you will have a very tough time finding one, since it's a semi-rare print and coveted by Moitie enthusiasts. I think I only know two people who own one - and I know a LOT of lolitas. ^_^

  7. Your Polyvore sets are gorgeous! They make me want to try wearing all of them ;)