These are my Power Stripes

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I’m not much of a wearer of stripes. In fact, I only own a handful of striped clothing items, and only two of them are appropriate for work. I’ve already blogged my grey & black striped blouse here… But I do love a good group blog theme, so when Jamie of Geeky Goth Girl announced her Stripetember theme, I really wanted to participate! Thankfully, I remembered this scarf.

I bought this scarf on Amazon quite some time ago (the same order that included this polka dot scarf) but I had never worn it. Seeing it in person, something about it just screamed “flight attendant.” I never even tried it on, but when I paired it with this blazer and slacks combo I was pleasantly surprised. Okay, it still reads a bit stewardess-y to me, especially with the bun, but I was very satisfied with this look for work. I’m ready for some serious business with just a touch of whimsey, so please fasten your seat belts and return your seats to their upright position.

Now, head on over to Geeky Goth Girl and submit your stripey outfits!


All images and text © Sophistique Noir Gothic Fashion Blog. Do not use any photos or text from this blog without providing a credit to me and a link back to the original post.

Casual Pin-Up Goth

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It’s a holiday!!  That means I’m finally taking a break from thinking about nothing but work and breaking out a fun “weekend” outfit.  Today’s polka dot halter top from Venus needed some minor alterations (so much for their consistent sizing), but it turned out to be a wonderful buy. This is the perfect summer piece because it is made from a very lightweight fabric. I love the vintage flair it gets from the dots and the halter styling.

Whenever I want my look to go more vintage, I use flesh-toned stockings (or fishnets) rather than black. They lend more variety to my wardrobe and keep me from getting in a boring uber-Goth rut. 🙂 This look also calls for true red lipstick, such as this one from Mary Kay called “Red.” I was totally sold on the color, but I find this lipstick to be quite dry.  It’s my only Mary Kay lipstick purchase so far, so I don’t know if their entire line is dry or if I just got a bad one.

This is kinda what I think Goth would have looked like if it had started in the 40s rather than the late 70s. Crosses, jet-black long hair, and bold eyeliner with elegant, mostly-black clothing in very feminine styles.

This cross came from Shrine Hollywood, and the bracelet is from Macy’s.

What by-gone era influences you the most in terms of fashion?


All images and text © Sophistique Noir Gothic Fashion Blog. Do not use any photos or text from this blog without providing a credit to me and a link back to the original post.

April 1 Theme: Flowers

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Floral print can be challenging in Gothic fashion. Some Goths love it, some hate it; either way, it can be difficult to make it “work” with the look. I know many of you are probably cursing at me for this theme… 😉 You are not alone, as I was cursing myself for a couple of days, too. I have very few floral print pieces in my wardrobe, the best ones being a red rose print shirt and my grey silk chiffon maxi skirt.

Gothic floral fashion

Mr. Kitty suggested that, instead of featuring something I’ve already worn on this blog, I should push the limits of my hair flower collection. I haven’t been bothering to do much with my hair lately, so I thought this idea was a timely way to get me out of a rut.  I used my favorite chignon, wrapped my own hair in a braid around it, and topped it off with three different hued purple hair flowers.  Massive ones.

Gothic flower fashion

I realized that this silk chiffon top from Bebe would be the perfect complement to this floral-themed hair style. The dramatic keyhole neckline is trimmed with matching fabric flowers edged in black and topped with black beads. I paired it with one of my Newport News fishtail skirts.

Goth fashion

My rose ring (featured in my February theme post, Rings), a pair of black flower earrings and of course my rose handbag from Pyramid Collection finished my celebration of spring!

I headed out to dinner with Mr. Kitty and my parents in this outfit, to celebrate my mom’s 60th birthday. In keeping with the floral theme, I gave her a potted jasmine plant. And some Lindor chocolate truffles, which don’t have anything to do with flowers but are a necessity at all times!

Last but not least, I give you to a view of our humble floral offerings. Living in the desert, we committed to using only low-water landscaping for our yard. We have not a single square inch of grass. We also don’t have a lot of time for landscape maintenance, so most of our design is done using various stone and bricks. However, we did splurge and go for a patch of ice plant. This amazingly hardy succulent ground cover is able to survive our 110-degree summer days AND our occasionally freezing winter nights, all with very minimal water. Best of all, we are treated to the most gorgeous fuchsia-hued flowers for about three months each spring. Looks like we missed quite a lot of the early blooms while we were on vacation last week, but there are many more to come. If we committed to more watering, this whole patch would be thick with flowers for the whole season… But our needs are modest, and we are content with just a smattering of this great beauty.  My delight was enhanced by the fact that our ice plant blooms happen to match tonight’s outfit so perfectly!

dark fashion

Want to participate in this month’s theme?

Now it’s your turn! You know what to do (or if you don’t, check out the full details). 🙂

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All images and text © Sophistique Noir Gothic Fashion Blog. Do not use any photos or text from this blog without providing a credit to me and a link back to the original post.

March 1 Theme: GRAY

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My outfit for this month’s theme is brought to you by Mr. Kitty. Last weekend I was standing in the closet mumbling to myself while pondering what I should wear for the gray theme. He walked in, caught me mid-mumble and immediately responded, “Do you still have that dress with all the ladies on it?” Problem solved. Today I present to you one of Mr. Kitty’s all-time favorites from my wardrobe. I wore this dress on one of our VERY early dates, and maybe only once since. Yet he remembers it vividly and even brings it up from time to time. It really made an impact! So, without further ado… The outfit!

Yes, this slinky little dress is covered in classical ladies of all shapes and sizes! When I found it about a decade ago in a little shop on Melrose Ave., I fell in love with this celebration of the female form. What is better than wrapping a shapely figure in shapely figures? 🙂

I spent considerable time debating how to approach hair, makeup and accessories to complement this dress. The shrug was a given, since it matched so perfectly (and the dress has plain black spaghetti straps that don’t really lend anything to the overall look). I tried several different necklaces, a couple of bracelets and a huge set of dangly earrings before I realized that less is really more in this case. You won’t hear me say that often, but this print and cut really doesn’t need much embellishment. I went with lightweight black sleeves because it’s still chilly out, and no jewelry other than simple sterling silver studs, ear cuffs and two rings. The belt helped break up the pattern a bit and further emphasize my waist. I added a couple of flower clips to the belt to further the overall femininity of this look.

A sleek, high ponytail seemed perfect for this sleek dress. For the makeup, I decided to go monochrome, which is another thing I don’t do often. I used a shimmery white shadow that was a birthday gift from Sephora, and my usual Ben Nye black shadow applied with a light touch to make it a soft gray. The lipstick is also Ben Nye, in Silver Ice. Silver lipstick, in my opinion, really needs a black outline.

Today’s eyeliner is the result of several tips from Lady Bethezda’s recent Winged Eyeliner Tutorial.   If you are not already a fan of her blog, Bethezda’s Preoccupations, you must check it out right now!

Want to participate in this month’s theme?

Now it’s your turn! You know what to do (or if you don’t, check out the full details). 🙂

  1. Add the Monthly Theme icon to your blog post (copy the code below and paste into your post using the Edit HTML feature):

    <a href=”http://www.sophistiquenoir.com/search/label/Monthly%20Themes”><img src=”http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-A82Oi4aFQ80/TfkeMOqmtaI/AAAAAAAAAh4/H8unYe_-Cx8/s1600/monthly-theme-icon.jpg” border=”0″></a>
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Flowy, Drapey Silk

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Oh, how I love this uber-romantic silk skirt from Newport News. I love it so much, in fact, that you will be seeing a record number of photos today! I try never to go with more than three or four, or maybe five for a special occasion, but between the skirt and other fabulous details on this outfit, I just couldn’t choose my favorite shots.

Despite the crazy number of photos, I still failed to capture the delicate beading that flirts with the bottom edge of this skirt. Look closely – it is there, and it is fabulous.

A skirt this gorgeous deserves nothing but the best accompaniment. I paired it with a simple, ruched-sleeve sweater from Frederick’s, a lightweight crocheted scarf (a gift from my mom), and two Christmas presents from Mr. Kitty: fingerless satin gloves from Greatlookz and this stunning Orthodox Cross Locket from Alchemy Gothic. And my typical ankle-strap platform heels from Pleaser.

While we were out of town over the holidays, I was having crazy urges to put my hair “up.” The climate where we were visiting was so different for the desert I am used to that I couldn’t do a thing with it other than a tight, low bun (and a few artificial embellishments) so as soon as we got home, I went into a huge Loose Bun on Top of Head phase. You’ll be seeing that look from time to time over the next few months!

This particular evening, I adorned the bun with a feather hair clip from Forever 21, three homemade rose flower clips and a curled tendril. No, my hair doesn’t hold curls. Not with heat, gel, hairspray, setting lotion or a combination of all of the above. That’s okay, as I was happy with the slight wave I ended up with by the time I was finished taking the photos!

My nails aren’t black, but rather a very, very dark plum. Okay, basically black, but really not black! 😉

Itchy, But Worth It!

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This sweet ivory sweater from Newport News is a wool/angora blend. Yes, it drives me absolutely crazy to wear it… I do wear a camisole underneath, and fortunately there are no sleeves to speak of, so it’s really just my chest and upper back that suffer. I can live with that.  The sweater came with the bow pin, made from black satin ribbon and white lace.  At first, I thought white lace on an ivory sweater was a strange choice, but now I rather like it.  It ties in with the white in my cameo.

I have only worn this skirt to work once (and that was on a Saturday), but when I pull the waistband up high it is the perfect length for my lace Demonia boots.  I thought a pseudo-Victorian updo would be perfect with this outfit, and added a black fabric flower (from NY&Co) and an ivory one (from Claire’s).

The fabulous long, ruched knit gloves came from Claire’s. I didn’t actually wear these throughout the work day, of course. But they were the perfect solution for a chilly drive home in the evening.

Stop Staring! Birthday Weekend, Part II

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Night #2 of my birthday weekend featured the other Stop Staring dress I bought myself from eBay. This one is in gorgeous purple taffeta with a black satin bodice. The layered bodice effect is similar to a halter top I wore a few weeks ago, but much nicer in its execution.

I wore this outfit out to dinner with my parents at our local fancy restaurant. I broke out of my normal healthy eating routine to indulge in the most amazing filet mignon I’ve ever tasted!

I paired the dress with flesh-tone fishnets from Hue.com, ruched satin fingerless gloves from Greatlookz, and a necklace and earrings that are also from eBay. I scored the jewelry quite a while back for some ridiculously low price like $30.

This hairstyle was just a chignon with my real hair braided around it, finished with two black flowers.  If you look through my Hairstyles tag, you’ll see that I rely on artificial hairpieces quite frequently.  Despite having very long hair, but I’m not masterful at styling it by any means (nor do I have the time to get elaborate with it).

What have been some of your best eBay finds?

Simple Hair Styles for Work or School

Ages ago, a reader suggested that I do a tutorial on hair styles that are simple, classy and appropriate for work or school.  Yes, it took me months to get to it, but I did not forget!  🙂

All of these styles require at least long-ish hair. I don’t mean to be biased, but I’ve never had short hair so I’m just not much help in that area. 🙁 However, I highly recommend hairpieces if you want to “fake” it.  I frequently wear chignons and other artificial pieces to create looks I can’t achieve with my own hair.  See the last two styles in this post for a few details and resources for synthetic hairpieces.

Side Bun with Flower
Brush your hair all to one side, then gather it up into a side ponytail close to the head. Use a cloth-covered hair elastic for the base of the ponytail (I prefer the kind with no metal!). Then twist your hair one direction and wrap it around itself as you would for a regular bun. Pin securely. I love to use the spin pins (link), as they hold much better than standard bobby pins in my slippery hair. My bun tends to frizz throughout the day, so I use a black hair net over the bun. Then I like to add a hair flower or two (or more!).

Braided Side Bun
Same style as above, but after you put it in the side ponytail, braid it loosely. Then wrap it around without twisting. This style will require more pins, as a braid doesn’t seem to hold itself in the bun as well as loose hair. You can still use the hair net over this one if needed.

Loose Side Braid
This looks especially nice with very long hair. Even better if your hair is thicker than mine, as it gives you that lovely Rapunzel look. 😉 Brush your hair all to one side, but this time don’t put it into a ponytail holder. Just gather it up and braid it loosely. Finish with a tiny fabric-coated hair elastic or a small decorative clip.

Side Braid Wrapped Over Head
You definitely need long hair for this one – waist length at least. Create a side braid as in the style above, but braid it fairly tight. Then wrap the braid over the top of your head and pin it with double pins near the base of the braid, at the end, and somewhere in the middle (six pins total; maybe more if your hair is very thick). You can tuck the end of the braid under a head wrap or clip a flower or barrette over it.

If your braid tends to frizz while in this style, apply some hair wax before braiding and finish with a touch of hair spray after it’s all pinned in place.

Magic Hair

One of my new favorite tricks is Magic Hair. These hair pieces are made of two wires covered in bits of synthetic hair, attached to a comb.  They can be purchased here for about $13 USD.

An easy way to use these is to put my hair in a bun at the back of my head (secured into a ponytail first, as the Magic Hair pieces are a bit heavy and will slowly pull the bun out otherwise) and then slide in the comb and wrap the wires around my bun to form a circle. Then add some decorative bits, of course!

I have a tutorial for a fun “clubby” look using these hair pieces, also.

Synthetic Chignons

There are also many styles of synthetic chignons available, which make it appear that you spent hours on a fancy style but you really just pin them over a plain bun!

To see more ideas, view my Hair Styles labeled posts. Every hair style I’ve worn on this blog is featured once under that label. There are 25 as of today!

Thank you, Ms Little Black Riding Hood for asking me to do this post.  Hope you enjoy it!

The First Person Who Says Anything About “Blue Velvet…”

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Here’s hoping no one really remembers that old song. Although I do, which is a bit strange since the song is 10 years older than I am… Anyway, yes I AM wearing a blue velvet blazer. And as much as I love it in person, I have to admit I love it even more in the photos. The way the studio lights accent it so perfectly, and it really pops against the grey background.

I was desperately tempted to pair this with either the tiered mesh maxi skirt from Macy’s or my black Target pencil skirt, but I resisted since those seem to be my major go-to skirts this summer. Trying to keep the variety up, but this fashion blogging thing isn’t as easy as it might seem sometimes!! 🙂 I am pretty happy with the sheer skirt that I chose, and the whole thing doesn’t seem as top-heavy as I expected it to. When I wear a very lightweight skirt, I tend to think that a top made from heavy fabric will seem unbalanced. But the velvet is fairly lightweight, and it does have short sleeves… Any thoughts on that from my awesome readers?

Cruising and Freezing

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I’m pretty certain that this summer is going to cause me to lose my mind. One day, Southern CA is 100 degrees and humid, the next it’s almost chilly during the day and freezing cold at night.  And it’s nearly August. I never know how to dress any more!!

We headed out to a tiny car show last weekend, then did some cruising around town with a couple of other cars and some really awesome people. I wore an outfit very similar to what I wore for the recent rat rod show, with the exact same top in a very different color . I added lace fingerless gloves and a necklace. The skirt is similar also, but I like this one much better. More about it in one of my previous posts from way back! So glad I brought the blazer again (yes, same blazer as the last car show), although long sleeves would have been nice! I ended up wearing Mr. Kitty’s Dickies jacket for the last hour of the evening!

I invented another fun center-part hair style. This one also requires the use of synthetic hairpieces (unless you have short, thick hair and are okay with lots of teasing). I used the Glamarama pieces by Dancing with the Stars. I find this highly amusing, as I am pretty sure they never thought their products would appeal to Goths and they certainly didn’t intend for TWO to be used at once. Let me proudly state now that I never have seen and never will see that show, and would almost be ashamed of myself for buying into their gimmicks… But I look at it like this: capitalist gimmick or not, if it benefits me I win in the end. And I used Sally Beauty coupons for them, so double-win! 🙂  The style is simple: just create two high pigtails, wrap them into buns, and clip these hairpieces on top of the buns!