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A Lighter Shade Of Black
Posted by richard | May 23, 2013
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Yesterday was, believe or not, the fourth annual World Goth Day, that one day in the calendar when it’s cool to celebrate all things dark and macabre without feeling like an anti-social, death-loving pariah.

Today, however, it’s back to your day jobs and time to put away the black eyeshadow and shredded leggings until next May 22 … or at least next weekend.

Which really is a shame. Goth has always been a woefully misunderstood and misrepresented subculture, one whose dour public countenance masks a creative, ever-evolving and highly energized fashion sensibility. And no, it’s not all black.

The designer lingerie community offers a number of fashion-forward choices for Goth girls, too. Some labels like Bela’s Dead and Fairy Gothmother target that niche specifically, while other industry trends — like strappy fetish garments and steampunk styles — overlap nicely into Goth and its many sub-genres.

If there’s one label, though, that deserves a showcase on World Goth Day, it’s the wonderful Australian indie Hopeless Lingerie. Melbourne designer Gaby Adamidis has been producing dark-themed collections, often inspired by horror movies, for several years now and each new offering is more ambitious and accomplished than its predecessors. Life after death, indeed.

The new collection from Hopeless mirrors the brand’s DNA perfectly — elegant mesh and bamboo silhouettes with bold minimalist lines and graphic cutouts. But there’s also a sea change happening here, literally. Hopeless is lightening up, just a little.

The new collection is called ‘As Above, So Below’ and rather than draw from ghoulish source material, Gaby was inspired by the ocean the abundance of life it contains. After researching sea myths and aquatic life, she added leather, cotton lace and New Zealand merino wool to her usual go-to fabrics of bamboo and mesh, creating geometric patterns that mimic those found in nature.

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The collection includes soft bras and briefs, layering pieces and several intriguing fetish items like the Pentagram harness (above) and the leather Maja leg garters (below) that were inspired by spiny crab legs (there’s a matching harness as well). And you can tell Gaby puts a TON of thought into her efforts: this is probably the first time we’ve seen a lingerie designer reference the Euclidian algorithm called the Golden Ratio — a kind of mathematical formula for perfect geometric proportions — to explain the shapes and patterns created by her intersecting straps.

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If you want to get the full effect of Hopeless Lingerie’s evolving aestethic, try the stunning ensemble shown in the main photo at the top of this post: It includes the Saga bamboo jersey cropped top and the Xanthe full-length mesh skirt over the Cleo bamboo high-waisted brief.

The result is a very contemporary look that will appeal to Hopeless’s stylish Goth devotees and a much broader base of fashion lovers as well. And there’s good news for North American fans: Hopeless was recently picked up by the Seattle-based Craft & Culture, a curated e-commerce collection of emerging designer talent.

Here’s a look at some of the pieces in ‘As Above, So Below’, which are also available from the Hopeless e-commerce site as well as its Etsy shop. (Note: Bottom two photos are from Craft & Culture‘s own lookbook to introduce the Hopeless brand to its store.)

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Posted in Hopeless Lingerie

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