Self-Discovery Saturday: Developing my goth look #1 (hair dye, skinny jeans and D.I.Y. jacket)

I actually wrote this last night but for whatever reason this blog post didn’t publish when I thought it did. I also mention at the beginning that I’m going to go into what “Self-Discovery Saturday” is all about at the end of the blog but it went on for so long that I forgot. Instead of revising it I’m going to publish what I had intended to publish, mistake or not, and tell you that I’ll go into what I’m talking about next Saturday.

I’ll go into why the whole “self-discovery” thing later in this blog post but something tells me that this isn’t going to be a permanent replacement for the Nerdy Saturday theme. But that’s okay, it will do for now while I think of something else. Besides, “self-discover” begins with “s” as does “Saturday.” The connection is just obvious, isn’t it?

One of the things that I’ve come to accept is that I should be more active in the Goth subculture. I already have Shadows of Immurement, influenced by bands from that world. Aside from trying to broaden my knowledge and appreciate for the music, it’s about time that I worked on my look. I’m already wearing black all the time, including nail polish and eyeliner. I need to work on my wardrobe. You’ll notice that I’m not saying that “I realized that I’m a Goth.” It may be true. But I’m not the one to judge that, at least not yet.

One of the first things I wanted to do was dye my facial hair. I’ve already shaved it in a new shape:

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I did trim the hair on my chin down more, but I want it black. I was considering dark red, but I want to get used to doing this with a “safe” color first so I know what I’m doing. I went to a store that I new had vegan hair dye yesterday. I already have black hair dye leftover from when I used to have hair up top, but it looked too involved. I got it because it was the cheapest vegan option the health food store had at the time. But aside from boiling water to mix with the powder in the tub it didn’t look like it was any less involved than the stuff I was looking at yesterday. So I decided to skip it and go for what I had today.

Unfortunately, I didn’t know that the stuff had an expiration date. I had it for years, sitting unopened in my hallway cupboard. When I opened the tub I detected a strong odor and the stuff was green but I didn’t know how it was supposed to smell or look, so I proceeded as the instructions suggested. After mixing boiling water to the stuff it clicked as to what the smell was: mold. I ended up throwing the stuff in the trash. I still don’t have my hair dyed as I’m writing this.

That’s primarily because I decided to run a few errands and ended up spending more money than I initially intended. I didn’t expect to find black skinny jeans that were not only affordable but my size. Well, close enough… I’ll probably be tucking them into boots so it doesn’t matter if they’re an inch or two short, if it mattered anyway. The waist could also be too short should they shrink the laundry. I guess I’ll just have to hang these to dry. Besides, I would only really wear them when I start going to clubs, anyway.

Finally, I wanted a black leather jacket to top everything off. However, as many of my regular readers would know by now, I’m an ethical vegetarian and won’t wear real leather (I was very tempted by a leather, spiked choker I found at a thrift store for two bucks but I resisted). I already had a faux leather jacket, except it wasn’t quite right. For one thing, it’s dark brown, not black. I didn’t realize it when I saw it in the dimly-lit department store years ago. Another problem is that it’s pretty basic.

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Considering that D.I.Y. is a big component of Goth fashion, I decided to change the color of the jacket as well as eventually adding spikes and so forth. I’m not going to cut the sleeves off as I’ve seen other people do in order to make a vest. I don’t want to go completely with a deathrocker look, even though I’m edging in that direction with this thing.

I read an article online on how to dye faux leather using upholstery paint. It turns out that stuff was a lot harder to find than I thought it would. I ended up driving to four places before finding a can at a fabric store. I suppose it was obvious but I was checking hardware stores first. Silly me, I thought paint would be sold with paint. I didn’t realize that it was considered more “craft” than “home maintenance.”

Whatever—I bought a can and sprayed most of the back of the jacket tonight. In the process I taught myself the lesson that next time I ought to put a drop cloth on my dining room table before spraying paint all over the place. Oh, well. I guess this is more of an excuse to get a black tablecloth. It’s not like I have guests over that often, anyway.

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So far I’m not seeing too much of a difference. I mean, what I painted looks pretty dark but the jacket already did. It could just be the lighting in that room. Remember, I thought the thing was black when I saw it in the store. I probably have to add another layer after this first one dries anyway.

The only problem with this project is that the polyester lining is brown. While I’m wearing it you can’t really see it but I still know it’s there. I want to dye that as well, but I don’t know how I’m going to without submersing the whole thing in dye. I was thinking of read. That could turn out to be pretty cool with red highlights in the black, or the PVC shell might not take it anyway. But it seems like too much of a risk.

I have some future ideas in mind: I want to shop for some fancier clothes at Goth boutiques, but I’m mostly interested in a long coat and perhaps some nice, Gothic-looking shirts. The long coat could be another D.I.Y. project, though. I don’t think I’ll alter my current trench coat, but if I find something at a thrift store I might try to do something with it. I also need a top hat. And I need a couple pairs of appropriate boots. There’s a good likelihood that I’ll get some for either Christmas or my birthday, though.

I also had my eye on a black and red dress that we’re selling at work. I doubt I’ll wear it as a dress but I really like the look of it. I could try turning it into a top of some sort, while turning the leftover fabric into arm warmers or something. I wouldn’t mind wearing a skirt but I don’t think that this one would look right on me.

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