I wonder how many people have thought about dressing in Gothic Costumes for Halloween. Gothic costumes have always been popular and dressing in Gothic costume was quite the rage back in the late 1970's. Gothic costumes were influenced by the many Gothic novels and horror films of the past. The Goth movement of the 1970's had a profound effect on the youth of many countries. It took hold in England and particularly in Germany. This movement spread to the USA and many other countries throughout Europe. The Goths, as they were called back then, listened to Goth music and dressed in the dark gloomy clothes portrayed in many of the old vampire movies. The Gothic bands that appeared during this time were a huge influence on the clothes, hair and make-up that were all an important part of creating the Gothic costume. The stage costumes worn by these bands had a profound influence on their fans. There were no set rules about what a Gothic costume had to be and it allowed for an individual to be experimental and also express their inner creativity. The popular colors used in Gothic costumes were black, purple and dark red. They were created out of satin and velvet and frilly lacey type materials. Women would fashion their costumes after the characters portrayed in the vampire horror films. The use of black fishnet stockings and gloves were very popular among the young women. Men liked to include a fancy and frilly shirt like the ones that were worn by the romantic poets in the creation of costume attire. Many Goth costumes were finished with the addition of accessories such as a studded dog collar, silver buckles, silver jewelry and of course the classic Gothic chokers. Both men and women wore white make-up and accentuated their eyes with mascara and black eye liner. Red, purple and black lipstick was popular and of course black fingernail polish was applied by men and women. Each year there is a gathering of Goths in England in the seaside resort of Whitby. Whitby is the town where Bram Stoker set his original Dracula horror story. During this gathering they show all the old Dracula movies and many of the newer vampire films such as "Interview with a Vampire" adapted from the novel by Anne Rice and "Beetlejuice" by Tim Burton. Goth bands have always added their music to this cultural scene and influenced the whole Gothic culture. Dancing to the music created by these bands is a large part of fun and entertainment enjoyed by the Goth culture. The Goth bands created had wonderful names such as Killing Joke, Southern Death Cult, Dead Can Dance, Sisters of Mercy and one of the most popular was Siouxsie and the Banshees and The Cure. Many of the young people who chose to portray the distinctive Goth look were not appreciated by their elders and peers. In Fact, these young people were made fun of and bullied around. Many of the youth who dressed in Gothic style were insecure about how they looked. These same young people felt that the Gothic look gave them a character they could hide behind and boosted their self confidence so they could deal with daily life. The late 1970's culture tended to force a need to look perfect and the majority of young people were all trying to look like fashion models, but dressing in Gothic costumes allowed for the expression of individuality. Today, the Goths are still around, but their numbers have depleted. Most of these people have outgrown the need to express themselves in Gothic costumes in daily life. They still have many of the same friends and enjoy sharing the good old times through photographs and attending special Goth gatherings. These people who shared the Gothic culture will have interesting stories to tell their children.
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