In 1976, by mistake, punk was invented. It was more than just a genre of music. It was a fashion choice, it was a lifestyle, it was a middle finger raised to authority and regimes that repressed free expression. It challenged society’s notions of beauty, aesthetics and art in ways on a scale which had not been seen since Elvis and his ilk introduced the world to rock ‘n’ roll. While most would argue that the heyday of punk has been and gone, echoes of punk still resonate far and wide throughout the fashion world
In the decades since its inception, the trappings of punk have become a visual shorthand in the fashion world for rebelliousness, individuality, confidence and self-expression. Even those whose fashion tastes can tend to lean more towards the conservative can find that a few little punk flourishes can lend an edge to any ensemble. Every now and then, it always helps to step outside of your comfort zone when it comes to making fashion choices. With that in mind, if you want to revivify your look with a punky twist consider…
Wear your piercings with pride
If you were a kid in the late ‘70s and early ‘80s the coolest way to make a fashion statement was to force a safety pin through your ear, your nostril, your lip or anywhere else that could accommodate a safety pin. Whist I don’t necessarily recommend bucking this trend, a great way to embody the punk spirit is to wear your piercings with pride. Nose studs, reverse belly bars, eyebrow rings, lip rings septum piercings. They’re all a symbol of your own individuality, claim it (if it’s your kinda thing) and rock it.
Rip it, rip it real good
The ripped jean is a statement piece that really needs no introduction. It shows that there’s beauty in chaos, the disruption of familiar forms and raw, bare expression. But when we buy our jeans pre-ripped… It kind of defeats the point. If you have a pair of jeans that have seen better days, bring them back to life with a pair scissors or revive them gently with a little bleach and a cotton swab.
Mix it up!
Punk fashion, like punk music, is all about dissonance. It’s about marrying contrasting colours, textures and fabrics. If you want to combine black skinny jeans with a pink mini skirt or stonewashed denim vest… Nobody’s saying you can’t! You want to put a brightly coloured skinny tie over a black tee? Do it! There really are no wrong answers when it comes to punking up your wardrobe, it’s literally putting the anarchist amongst the conformist and trying those little things that you expect not to work.
Rock a rockabilly
While punk is widely perceived as a confrontational and aggressive style it can also be eminently delicate and feminine, too. If you want to wear a look that screams punk but also embraces an almost girlish sense of femininity, a rockabilly dress can help you to embody the best of both worlds.
And what punk ensemble is complete without a leather biker jacket?
The black leather jacket is one of the most enduring icons of the punk movement and no punk ensemble is complete without one. Vegan or looking to consider non-leather options that embody the same look? There are plenty of faux leather jackets that will give you the look you need whilst also helping you to keep your conscience clean! Looking for a true, punk style leather option? Hit up your local vintage fair. You’ll find era specific leather options, maybe even with some era specific stains to boot!