- disinterested in common moral order: idle, parasitical, hedonistic, criminal, disinterested in or against adhering to structure of social class,
- identification with an area (street, 'hood, club) rather than self-owned property,
- preferring to develop "family" and community outside of traditional paradigms, and attitudes against or wary of Mass production, homogeny, socially imposed behaviour constrictions.
What puts the alternative in alternative fashion?
Fashion will in effect always mean different things to different people with regards to personal attitudes towards concepts such as individuality, consumerism, social constructs on behaviour, self-expression, and/or disenfranchisement with what is viewed as "normal" society. Personally, I often feel that alternative fashion gets a bad rap, and is not portrayed in the media in a way which I would prefer. There are so many creative and imaginative designers creating beautiful pieces which push boundaries and create new aesthetics, and yet what we usually see is stereotypical ‘goth’ corsets and cheesy skull print hoodys.
To me, what I like most about alternative fashion is that it is much more individual and unique to the wearer than what is considered to be mainstream fashion. It gives the wearer the opportunity to develop their own personal style over time, taking elements from ‘fashion’, and using it in their own way. There are no set rules and fashions do not necessarily change from season to season. Alternative fashion is a much slower, creative process with subcultures and styles developing and growing over time. I think everyone should be able to wear what they feel comfortable in and what makes them happy, without the fear of being labelled (there’s that labelling issue again!) ‘unfashionable’.
If you do have an interest in ‘alt’ fashion like me, you might want to check out the following:
- Alt magazine
- Any writing on fashion and subcultures by Ted Polhemus
This article was written by Michelle, an intern with JPOL in 2011.