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High Fashion Lesbian Hipsters
May 26, 2010 7:05 AM   Subscribe

Lesbian Hipster Chic "I represent a small community of high fashion dykes, and I’m not talking about femmes or lipstick lesbians, to use the terms so popularized in culture today. We are often mistaken for straight fashionistas. We are the women who popularized chic undercuts, skinny jeans with patent leather wingtips, sexy flannel, fitted motorcycle jackets, Doc Martens and James Dean vibes minus the James. We are grrls, we are bois, we are young women with a taste for rock n’ roll, a penchant for sex appeal and an undying love for Alexander McQueen, may he rest in peace... It is our duty, as (NSFW) model lesbians, lesbian models, (NSFW) hipster dykes and purveyors of lesbian chic to establish ourselves as a force within the canon of high fashion... We’re fashion fagettes and we’re taking over the runways of New York, London, Milan and Paris. So let’s wrangle the model lesbians like Freja, Cat McNeil, Milou, Myf, Nimue editors like Kate Lanphear... and show fashion that as gay ladies, we not only epitomize the high fashion street style that has taken the world by storm, but we invented it." posted by Suparnova (155 comments total) 32 users marked this as a favorite

 
Woah, there, hipsters. Claiming to have done something first is a punk rock thing. We invented that!
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:16 AM on May 26, 2010 [21 favorites]


This makes me sad.
posted by jokeefe at 7:16 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yet still keeping "high fashion" restricted to a very specific body type. Yay, sisterhood.
posted by padraigin at 7:17 AM on May 26, 2010 [30 favorites]


Kate Lanphear (more photos) is straight up the baddest bitch on earth. Someday I'll be brave enough to copy her hair.
posted by oinopaponton at 7:18 AM on May 26, 2010


fuck yeah big up hipster lesbians!

your icons are too recent tho...

if i had to pick a single trailblazer it would probably be JD Samson of Le Tigre and Peaches.

At some point in the late 90s a small subset of lesbian musicians essentially hijacked electro music and made it awesome and dirty and fun and fashionable. Since then it has become the dominant force in pop music, all thanks to the pacific NW and awesome ladies with mustaches.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:18 AM on May 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


there are way too many made-up words and phrases for me... I need a translator...

And, I invented wearing plaid shirts and jeans with a stupid hat back in 1958, I was 10, straight, male. (I also wore the neatest Paladin replica 6-shooter ever made, I could have robbed a bank with that sucker). We didn't have hipsters back then...well, we had one, Maynard G. Krebs.
posted by HuronBob at 7:21 AM on May 26, 2010 [13 favorites]


The first article is somewhat interesting (though I had to view it on my phone, my work filter blocks it as "adult"?). But my favourite quote:
Because let’s face it, y’all: hipsters are sometimes ridiculous.
*THANK YOU*... At least she admits it.
posted by antifuse at 7:22 AM on May 26, 2010


This makes me sad.

Scratch that. This makes me sad, irritated, and overly cynical.
posted by jokeefe at 7:23 AM on May 26, 2010


High Fashion Lesbian Hipsters

It's like an improvised explosive device filled with MeFi hotbutton shrapnel.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 7:25 AM on May 26, 2010 [20 favorites]


The copy is boringly written yeah, but I guess it's sort of fabulous for lesbian girls to be able to grow up thinking that masculine is ok and beautiful.

"Yet still keeping 'high fashion' restricted to a very specific body type. Yay, sisterhood."
true and sad. no hints of feminism there.
posted by TheGoodBlood at 7:27 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


Having now read the first article:

Hipster seems to be functioning as a third gender in fashion.

Wow, pretty right on. I would guess that this is behind a lot of the hipster bashing that goes on here and elsewhere...it's not exactly homophobia, more like androgy-phobia. The fact that one can't tell the difference between gays, lesbian, straight people and transwhathaveyous seems to drive older people crazy. STICK TO YOUR CATEGORIES YOU LOOKS RIDICULOUS.

Good stuff.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 7:29 AM on May 26, 2010 [12 favorites]


Woo! We are the lesbian chic establishment and we aspire to be just as exclusive, unforgiving and unneighborly as the het chic establishment that makes righteous feminists and queer gals looking for alternatives to Vogue and Curve fashion-plates feel uncool for being chubby, poor and unfashionable.

Credit where credit is due!
posted by Lisitasan at 7:31 AM on May 26, 2010 [14 favorites]


In before hundreds of off-topic angry comments about models being thin, and how each poster prefers larger girls.

Well, not quite, I kind of beat you to the punch a little.

It's not at all that I don't like thin models. I do. I just don't like only thin models. It's gotten incredibly boring. I'm craving the representation of variety, and being thrown a bone every now and then with a Beth Ditto here and a Crystal Renn there is enough to whet my appetite, but not enough to satisfy.
posted by padraigin at 7:31 AM on May 26, 2010 [8 favorites]


STICK TO YOUR CATEGORIES YOU LOOKS RIDICULOUS.

More like "TAKE OFF THOSE GLASSES WITHOUT LENSES YOU LOOKS RIDICULOUS" :)
posted by antifuse at 7:32 AM on May 26, 2010 [9 favorites]


"These chicks think of themselves as feminists, but don't share the political engagements I think of as important!"
posted by Threeway Handshake at 7:33 AM on May 26, 2010 [7 favorites]


Yeesh, I can't even bring myself to click on the links. That paragraph is the most annoying thing I've read in months.
posted by something something at 7:34 AM on May 26, 2010 [7 favorites]


With such modesty already available to the movement in the form of this manifesto, I can only await their future accomplishments, based on further virtues, with nothing less than quivering anticipation.
posted by adipocere at 7:36 AM on May 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


We didn't have hipsters back then...well, we had one, Maynard G. Krebs.

I croaked "work!" at a coworker the other day and he just looked blank. I'm only 37!
posted by DU at 7:37 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


PG: Woah, there, hipsters. Claiming to have done something first is a punk rock thing. We invented that!

Paradigm-conquering manifesto: Let’s show the world that fashion can be sexy and comfortable at the same time that punk rock is back and we brought it.

IT'S A TOTAL BLAM-BLAM.
posted by mintcake! at 7:37 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


I don't care who you sleep with -- a hipster is a hipster.
posted by Devils Rancher at 7:39 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


This is not the first time androgyny has come into fashion. Is today's look making a drastically bigger statement about gender than rock n' roll and disco did in the 70s? Or the waify models that mimicked popular gender bending artists in the 80's?
posted by Lisitasan at 7:40 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I would guess that this is behind a lot of the hipster bashing that goes on here and elsewhere...it's not exactly homophobia, more like androgy-phobia. The fact that one can't tell the difference between gays, lesbian, straight people and transwhathaveyous seems to drive older people crazy.

Wow, that is a very odd projection. I thought the stereotype of hipsters was that you couldn't tell them apart from homeless people. Show me pictures of a hundred hipsters and I bet I could tell you which were women and which were men.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 7:40 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


We are the women who popularized ... Doc Martens

I want to kick you in the face with the pair that are older than you. They are in my closet.
posted by vbfg at 7:44 AM on May 26, 2010 [32 favorites]


It's ok to kick people in the face, right?
posted by vbfg at 7:44 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I really didn't need any Smith College flashbacks before my second cup of coffee, but thanks.
posted by dinty_moore at 7:46 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


I guess it's sort of fabulous for lesbian girls to be able to grow up thinking that masculine is ok and beautiful.

I agree. Anything that makes androgyny/genderqueer a viable option is OK in my book.
posted by desjardins at 7:46 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


I apologize in advance, on behalf of lesbians everywhere.
posted by Theta States at 7:49 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


"These chicks think of themselves as feminists, but don't share the political engagements I think of as important!"

Sarah Palin's gone gay?
posted by Ufez Jones at 7:52 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I don't understand how sexual preference is the primary factor guiding apparel choice. Can't you look like Andy Warhol's cousin at a RISD graduation without being a (non-lipstick) lesbian?

Can't I wear an asymmetrical peacoat while riding my fixed gear bike and just be bi-curious?
posted by spacely_sprocket at 7:54 AM on May 26, 2010 [8 favorites]


Lenny Bruce once said:
I never met a dyke I could't like.
He was wrong.
posted by Postroad at 7:55 AM on May 26, 2010


Metafilter: Like an improvised explosive device filled with hotbutton shrapnel.

Thanks Horace.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 7:55 AM on May 26, 2010


"These chicks think of themselves as feminists, but don't share the political engagements I think of as important! give any reason to believe such a characterization!"
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:55 AM on May 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


The first paragraph was a more interesting article than I expected. Although it's worth noting that androgyny in fashion is neither a lesbian nor a hipster creation.
posted by zarq at 7:56 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


Shit gets recycled. There are no new ideas. Claiming ownership is just redonkulous. At least The Beatles admitted they were regenerated Teddy Boys.
posted by spicynuts at 7:56 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I guess it's sort of fabulous for lesbian girls to be able to grow up thinking that masculine is ok and beautiful.

I agree. Anything that makes androgyny/genderqueer a viable option is OK in my book.


I think I’d like this more if it wasn’t just for the lesbians bit-I don’t think anybody has to tell lesbians it’s ok to look like lesbians, but it’d be kind of awesome if more people were telling girls that you can rock the androgynous look even if you’re not attracted to women.

Or, more generally, that looks don’t dictate sexual preference. Because for some reason, people still don’t get it.
posted by dinty_moore at 8:02 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's ok to kick people in the face, right?
posted by vbfg at 10:44 AM on May 26


Only if they're different!
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:02 AM on May 26, 2010 [7 favorites]


Devils Rancher: I don't care who you sleep with -- a hipster is a hipster.

Presto. Cultivating an image defined by being an asshole is irritating at the very least, for white and non-white, rich and non-rich, male and female, and any possible sexuality.

"High fashion hipster" as a self-applied title of pride is an asshole, no matter who you are or who you fuck.
posted by paisley henosis at 8:05 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


I want to kick you in the face with the pair that are older than you.

Dibs on sloppy seconds.
posted by Aquaman at 8:08 AM on May 26, 2010


It's ok to kick people in the face, right?

What's the consensus on hipsters being "people"?
posted by acb at 8:09 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


Christ, what a collection of assholes.
posted by ob at 8:09 AM on May 26, 2010


I think everyone goes for girls that look like Leo DiCaprio.
posted by four panels at 8:09 AM on May 26, 2010


Ah, MetaFilter. If Roger Ebert came out as a hipster, people would be loathing him the next moment. If Mr. Rogers turned out to be a hipster, you'd be burning him in effigy.

I don't mind hipsters, even though they're not what I'd like to think of when I like to think of hipsters -- they're not the reefer smoking bop jazz obsessed zoot suit wearing hipsters of yesteryear, who were also despised. So they're a little full of themselves. So they have bad taste in beer. At least they're making an attempt not to be boring -- even if they often fail at it.

And I'm with Oscar Wilde, himself a proto-hipster: In art, and, to an extent in life, the biggest crime and the biggest tragedy is to be boring.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:09 AM on May 26, 2010 [19 favorites]


It's ok to kick people in the face, right?
posted by vbfg at 10:44 AM on May 26


Five dollars, same as in town.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 8:10 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Can't I wear an asymmetrical peacoat while riding my fixed gear bike and just be bi-curious?

No, you may not. That would require a flip-flop hub, where you could be fixed or free.
posted by fixedgear at 8:10 AM on May 26, 2010 [9 favorites]


I wish I could be more stylish than just a t-shirt and cargo shorts. I'm buying some tank tops as a first step.
posted by fuq at 8:11 AM on May 26, 2010


Nthing the "little did I know that I was a 2010-era lesbian hipster while I was in college in the 80s" sentiment. The old fogeys I know are less bothered by the genderqueering in dress than wtf about the claims to have come up with it when it wasn't that new when we all did it.

The sin here is not their subculture, which is neither here nor there, it's the claim that they've invented a fashion that people were wearing 25 years ago, and not knowing that it wasn't that new then.
posted by immlass at 8:15 AM on May 26, 2010 [9 favorites]


Show me pictures of a hundred hipsters and I bet I could tell you which were women and which were men.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 10:40 AM on May 26


Hipster of course really means 'whatever you personally dislike about fashionable people' but there are certain branch of 80s-inspired folks who blur the distinctions between gay and straight. Plenty of straight girls dress like this now and plenty of straight guys dress like this and gay dudes that look like this and then there is this also that I mentioned before.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:18 AM on May 26, 2010


When you're in your 20s, you're sure you've just invented every last thing you do. When you're in your 30s, you realize it ain't so. When you're in your 40s you don't give a crap because you've got stuff to do.
posted by Mister_A at 8:18 AM on May 26, 2010 [24 favorites]


I'm going to step away from this thread now because I might get very angry and insulting if ugly internet nerds keep talking about (even metaphorically) kicking attractive cool lesbians in the face, but I would like to invite anyone who feels like trying to actually kick any of my hipster lesbian friends to come down to phase 1 on 8th Street in DC any night of the week and attempt that shit in real life. Hipsters or not, those hot dykes will beat your ass.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:21 AM on May 26, 2010 [15 favorites]


Whatever. I mean I heart Katherine Moennig and all but essentially this is devoid of intrigue. Any idea how f*cking easy it is to look stylish when you're androgynously-shaped? Very. I mean, really very. Tits and ass however require complex tailoring and a shit load more thought than a lower slung jean. So I'm with the yawn brigade re: fashion, sexuality and body types. Page me if there's a breakthrough.
posted by freya_lamb at 8:21 AM on May 26, 2010 [15 favorites]


We are the women who popularized chic undercuts, skinny jeans with patent leather wingtips, sexy flannel, fitted motorcycle jackets, Doc Martens


Okay, just to be fair, the patent leather shoes I was wearing in 1984 weren't wingtips, they were second hand old lady oxfords. I think it evens out in my favor, though, because the Docs I had then were actually made in England, not China. I've still got my leather jacket, too. Undercuts were far too New Wave for me to think they were cool, so I never had one of those.

Even then, I never thought I was inventing anything. My parents had given me a good rock 'n roll history background, so I was well aware that all the things I wore had pretty much been part of some sub-culture's wardrobe before I wore it.
posted by oneirodynia at 8:24 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


My sis, five years older than me, is like this. She's always been pretty fashion forward, even when we were younger. I was talking to her a few months back about body hair. Years ago, she didn't shave any of it. I always thought that was an awesome, highly politicized choice, and when I was thirteen it was significant in forming my ideas about feminism and androgyny. She mentioned something recently about that being a tired fad, and how all the dykes she knows now are into bikini waxing. It made me sad to realize that what I thought in my youth to be a political statement was probably actually a fashion choice. Oh well.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:30 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


Everything began with Screamin Jay Hawkins, except the stuff that began before Screamin Jay Hawkins.
posted by vapidave at 8:31 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Threatening violence on the internet is disgusting - I will stab anybody who disagrees!!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 8:33 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


Pleated khaki wearers of the world unite! Let's kick these uppity chicks in the face!
posted by Threeway Handshake at 8:35 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Only if they're different!

Excellent. Line them up.
posted by vbfg at 8:40 AM on May 26, 2010


Try kicking my ass in those skinny little jeans and chuck taylors. I'd love to see it.
posted by Big_B at 8:40 AM on May 26, 2010


Wow, this thread is turning rapidly ugly.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 8:43 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


(Incidentally, I object to the insinuation that I threatened violence at all, never mind that it's because the person in question is a lesbian rather than being decidedly kickable. If you really think that I'm not sure we have anything to say to each other.)
posted by vbfg at 8:43 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's been done.
posted by HuronBob at 8:44 AM on May 26, 2010


It's ok to kick people in the face, right?
posted by vbfg at 10:44 AM on May 26

I'm going to step away from this thread now because I might get very angry and insulting if ugly internet nerds keep talking about (even metaphorically) kicking attractive cool lesbians in the face, but I would like to invite anyone who feels like trying to actually kick any of my hipster lesbian friends to come down to phase 1 on 8th Street in DC any night of the week and attempt that shit in real life. Hipsters or not, those hot dykes will beat your ass.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 8:21 AM on May 26 [3 favorites +] [!]

Pleated khaki wearers of the world unite! Let's kick these uppity chicks in the face!
posted by Threeway Handshake at 8:35 AM on May 26 [+] [!]

Threatening violence on the internet is disgusting - I will stab anybody who disagrees!!
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 8:33 AM on May 26 [1 favorite +] [!]


Butch.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 8:47 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Incidentally, I object to the insinuation that I threatened violence at all

It might help if you don't even hint at a desire to do violence to a lesbian. You did the opposite.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:47 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


It might help if you don't even hint at a desire to do violence to a lesbian. You did the opposite.

Yeah, there was no context there at all. Even the most charitable interpretation of that cunningly hidden joke would lead anyone to suspect that I was on my way home to get my Doc Martens.
posted by vbfg at 8:50 AM on May 26, 2010


Hipsters or not, those hot dykes will beat your ass.

I raise their Chuck Taylors a pair of workboots, on the end of a pair of legs which are a damn sight more muscular than theirs. I think I could take three of them, at the very least.

But hey, I'm just a straight ugly butch girl (who happens to have looked and dressed androgynously since her teens without ever claiming to be groundbreaking). I'm sure that if I did beat them up, that they would claim that they invented beatings, beat better than anyone else, and are reclaiming beating up for lesbians because no lesbian had ever beaten up anyone before them.
posted by Coobeastie at 8:50 AM on May 26, 2010 [8 favorites]


Siouxsie Sioux called. She wants her 1979 back.
posted by spacely_sprocket at 8:51 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


This post on the Model Lesbians blog reminds me that I once dated a girl who had the word "SNOB" tattooed on the inside of her lips. She asserted that her friend had a matching tattoo reading "FOOD."

That is all.
posted by Sticherbeast at 8:52 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Yeah, there was no context there at all.

Well, there actually was little context to your comment -- just an expression of a desire to do violence. I understand it was meant in jest, but perhaps you can understand that for many people, the expression of a desire to do violence against lesbians -- historically a target for violence -- just isn't very funny.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:53 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I guess we'll just have to disagree. I stand by my very obvious joke but I have no desire to piss all over the thread.
posted by vbfg at 8:55 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


We can disagree, but please understand that people aren't necessarily going to know that you were joking, and, even if they do, have a right to think that joking about violence to a group of people who have suffered real violence is just not that terrifically tasteful and hilarious.
posted by Astro Zombie at 8:57 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


When you're in your 40s you don't give a crap because you've got stuff to do.

Yeah, sure seeing a lot of that going on in this thread...
posted by hermitosis at 8:59 AM on May 26, 2010






Incidentally: Joel Schumacher (who directed Falling Down, linked above) was one of the first openly gay Hollywood directors.
posted by Sticherbeast at 9:05 AM on May 26, 2010


Fine, fair enough. I understand the anxst. Where you see lesbians, I see a young person half my age from another country claiming to have popularised the one essential part of my uniform from my angst ridden teenage years.

Anyway, I promised not to piss on this thread anymore. If anyone wants to mark me down as a violent homophobe, go for it.
posted by vbfg at 9:06 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


That explains the codpieces and nipples on the Bat Suit.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:07 AM on May 26, 2010


If anyone wants to mark me down as a violent homophobe, go for it.

Hopefully nobody is. Asking for sensitivity is not the same thing as accusing of hate.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:10 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


It's a blog post written by an excited-and-admittedly-silly twentysomething excited about the clothes she and her friends wear. I thought the idea of the Internet was that anybody could write about anything, regardless of how mature/valid/"approved-of" their words are. I approve of these silly twentysomethings.

We're really bad at chuckling, going "young people", and then letting young people keep being excited about the things people were excited about twenty years ago. Why do we have this weird dick-waving "I did this first" thing going on? Why so defensive?

I have hipster friends. They are shortsighted and entirely uninformed and still manage to be terrific fun, mainly because they aren't bothered worrying how legitimate the things they're saying are. There's a time to have done your research and it's not when you're twenty.
posted by Rory Marinich at 9:10 AM on May 26, 2010 [14 favorites]


Where you see lesbians, I see a young person half my age from another country claiming to have popularised the one essential part of my uniform from my angst ridden teenage years.

Man, let it go. If twenty years from now I'm still giving half a fuck about anything from my teenage years I'll be disappointed in myself.
posted by Rory Marinich at 9:12 AM on May 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


This is not the first time androgyny has come into fashion.

This androgyny -- is it of the type where women get to appropriate any and every male item of dress and style, and men get... long hair, if they want it?

Yeah, we've seen that before.

It's 27 degrees and humid as hell here. Give me a goddamn skirt. Call it a kilt if you want to.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 9:13 AM on May 26, 2010 [4 favorites]


27 29.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 9:14 AM on May 26, 2010


from another country
You wouldn't kick them if they were also from Knifecrime Island?

By the way, the guy (Martens) who invented your uniform shoes was in the German army in WWII, so I'll go ahead and bash you for co-opting other people's shit also.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 9:24 AM on May 26, 2010


the area where this particular venn diagram joins HOSTILITY, PROMISCUITY, and UNATTAINABILITY punched me right in the nuts. well done.

yet the timing for this fashion revolution happens to coincide with a runaways movie starring the girl from twilight, so pardon me if i predict next season there will be an awful lot of straight girls appropriating your unique semiotic signifiers.

"invented" is a pretty strong word.
posted by Hammond Rye at 9:24 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I thought the idea of the Internet was that anybody could write about anything, regardless of how mature/valid/"approved-of" their words are.

It is! And now that the people linked to have done so, we are doing the same thing! Reciprocity rules!
posted by Pope Guilty at 9:26 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


everybody knows that gay men invented all the cool stuff. but i can see how the lesbians would lose their collective shit when we invented lady gaga, which was basically like stacking the supreme court of fabulousness for the next 30 years.
posted by fallacy of the beard at 9:27 AM on May 26, 2010 [6 favorites]


I think this looks pretty. I can't say it doesn't look fashionable to me... does this make me a hipster lover?
posted by ServSci at 9:27 AM on May 26, 2010


Potomac Avenue: and then there is this also that I mentioned before.

This guy has a MAP TATTOO! on his ARM! He is OK by me!! jfc why didn't i think of that when i was getting tattoos
posted by desjardins at 9:35 AM on May 26, 2010


By the way, the guy (Martens) who invented your uniform shoes was in the German army in WWII, so I'll go ahead and bash you for co-opting other people's shit also.

And according to Wikipedia, the first "subculture" to latch onto Doc Martens in a significant way were housewives in their forties, so my mind is thoroughly blown. I mean, I knew I didn't invent the idea of wearing them when I bought a pair with my first real-job paycheck as a kid, but I didn't know it was going to be another twenty-plus years and a lot of surprising life decisions before I edged into their original demographic.
posted by padraigin at 9:37 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


We're really bad at chuckling, going "young people", and then letting young people keep being excited about the things people were excited about twenty years ago. Why do we have this weird dick-waving "I did this first" thing going on? Why so defensive?

I'm glad these young women are enjoying their clothes and their lifestyle, but it's weird to me to read that clothes and hairstyles that were common and not politically significant when I, who am happily middle aged now, was young are suddenly new and politically significant. I don't care that they're appropriating my precious youth or whatever, but that's odd and strange and worthy of comment to me.

Without the OMG flamewar aspect, maybe Metafilter "doesn't do this kind of post well" because "20-somethings invent new/old fashion scheme" posts always seem to result in this kind of been-there-done-that response from a significant fraction of the readers. Styles recycle, this is not news, and people who think they're new are going to get snarked about.

This androgyny -- is it of the type where women get to appropriate any and every male item of dress and style, and men get... long hair, if they want it?

Eyeliner for guys! That's the fresh new aspect of androgyny I was hearing about a few years ago that nobody had ever done before.
posted by immlass at 9:38 AM on May 26, 2010


Where do all the gays go at 27??
posted by Some1 at 9:40 AM on May 26, 2010


Rory Marinich: "I have hipster friends. They are shortsighted and entirely uninformed and still manage to be terrific fun, mainly because they aren't bothered worrying how legitimate the things they're saying are. There's a time to have done your research and it's not when you're twenty."

Oh no, no, no, no. You can't write a manifesto and when it's criticised, just claim you were joking and lol chill. Their tone doesn't imply they were "having terrific fun" and we can criticise it accordingly.

That said, this all sounds mostly harmless except for the call to "wrangle model lesbians." I don't think we (radical feminists, folks who think critically about gender) can afford to exclude other feminists like that.
posted by anonymuk at 9:40 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I've got nothing on the issue of High Fashion Lesbian Hipsters, but, I thought Doc Martens fell out of favor because the quality completely dropped off at some point in the 90s?
posted by drezdn at 9:43 AM on May 26, 2010


i linked to the wrong runaways gallery but you get the idea.

and honestly le tigre did this so long ago these kids should be blushing under their pallid pancake
posted by Hammond Rye at 9:44 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


"There's a time to have done your research and it's not when you're twenty."

But this is, if not a problem, a bummer. It seems like when you work the culture backwards to see who you're influenced by, you learn why things are the way they are. You work the influences back, and back, and you get more from it all. I know it meant a lot to me as a teen to work Ska backwards through reggae, R&B, Britain, Jamaica. This stuff came from somewhere. I don't begrudge the kids the right to write bombastic manifestoes--but if your manifestoes and declarations can't stand up to the scrutiny of uncool people like me then that's not much of a manifesto. I mean, I don't think even reasonable people can agree with a claim that this subculture invented or popularized both the skinny jean and the wearing of Doc Martens. And that's just two of the claims.

Then again, maybe we're in an age that so obsessively looks backwards and records everything, maybe it's a comfort to not have to research and see where things came from. Ahistorical culture! Postmodernism!

Also, vbfg, I laughed at your joke. I feel guilty now. Thanks a lot. :-)
posted by artlung at 9:44 AM on May 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


I thought Doc Martens fell out of favor because the quality completely dropped off at some point in the 90s?

That, and here in Austin, anyway, that's about when sorority girls took to wearing them en masse for a few years. (I blame "alternative" rock radio)

The trend gave way to flip-flops in the mid-aughts.
posted by Devils Rancher at 9:47 AM on May 26, 2010


I've got nothing on the issue of High Fashion Lesbian Hipsters, but, I thought Doc Martens fell out of favor because the quality completely dropped off at some point in the 90s?

They moved the factories overseas but then a few years later opened a new factory and started making a line of UK-made "classic" shoes. I really couldn't speak to the quality of the Asian-manufactured shoes or the new UK-manufactured ones though.
posted by padraigin at 9:48 AM on May 26, 2010


As someone who is pushing 30 and still rocks the same style he did since he was 19 (some of the same rock t-shirts even) I can only guess as to the reason behind the whole "been there done that" dialogue that inevitably pops up when 'new' fashion trends are discussed here. It's like someone telling a joke you already know the punchline to: you know how it ends, it's pretty old, and it's really not that funny. But everyone around you is absolutely LOSING their shit over it! Retelling it endlessly, just the mere mention of it is comedy gold! T-shirts start popping up in stores that say "To get to the other side!" or a WALK/DON'T WALK sign with a chicken silhouette instead of a man! For some people, it's really hard to remind oneself what it was like being young and having little to no frame of reference, and not give into the impulse to scream "THAT JOKE IS OLDER THAN MY FUCKING PARENTS, JESUS CHRIST"

If I had to guess, anyhow.
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 9:54 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I just wear Birkenstocks because they're comfortable.
posted by mecran01 at 9:54 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


Gay or straight, I guess it's progress if you can buy your way into an ephemeral subculture.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 9:56 AM on May 26, 2010 [7 favorites]


I'm wearing Birkenstocks right now!
posted by jessamyn at 9:56 AM on May 26, 2010


Gay or straight, I guess it's progress if you can buy your way into an ephemeral subculture.

Well put.
posted by Kwine at 10:00 AM on May 26, 2010


Claiming to have done something first is a punk rock thing.

Oh, like sex and drugs and rock and roll ? As in dropping acid, enjoying the consequences of reliable birth control, and regarding rock as some populist fingerquote underground backslash fingerquote The Man Can't Bust Our Music highbrow lowbrow art form ?

Ah, then--so punks were the hippies born too late to be front row hippies and got all GRAR, I HATE HIPPIES as a consequence.

To the Neener neener neener! beat, then : Punks are hippies! Punks are hippies! Punks are hippies! Punks are hippies! Punks are hippies! Punks are hippies! ...

It's funny because it's true.

Nelson Muntz Ha ha!  blackslash Nelson Muntz.
posted by y2karl at 10:01 AM on May 26, 2010


Lesbian or not, those are so god-awfully ugly clothes.
posted by madajb at 10:01 AM on May 26, 2010


I'm wearing Birkenstocks right now!

That's Metafilter's Own Androgynous Fashionista, Jessamyn West™.
posted by Devils Rancher at 10:02 AM on May 26, 2010


Lousy beatniks.
posted by kersplunk at 10:03 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Ah, then--so punks were the hippies born too late to be front row hippies and got all GRAR, I HATE HIPPIES as a consequence.

That whooshing sound you hear right above your head is something you might wish to investigate.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:05 AM on May 26, 2010


I feel like the time has come to out myself fully as a "Hipster", seeing as I:

have a fixie
have tattoos
also, ear plugs
enjoy cheap beer
have been known to sport a beard
find hipster girls "hot"
also, flannel and tight pants
in addition? I live in Brooklyn.

I'm also 34 and a programmer/nerd professionally, so I'm hoping that I don't suddenly disappear into a vortex of irony.

Point being - and to be really, really pedantic: It's tremendously stupid to judge people by how they look, amirite?
posted by jivadravya at 10:11 AM on May 26, 2010 [3 favorites]


They moved the factories overseas but then a few years later opened a new factory and started making a line of UK-made "classic" shoes.

I haven't seen these in the UK; are they recent?

I think another footwear company (Grinders? Grifters?) opened a factory in Northampton when Doc Martens closed theirs, and has been making similar boots.
posted by acb at 10:16 AM on May 26, 2010


Hippies were begat by the beatniks. And the beatniks were a media caricature of the Beat Generation (see: Maynard G Krebs, above). And so on, and so on. Me, I belong to the     (blank)     Generation. I can take or leave it each time. Though, I think all these groups are just part of the neverending parade of bohemianism through history.
posted by artlung at 10:17 AM on May 26, 2010



Yeah, but next to the special post-millenial snowflakes, all those early dudes are posers.

And don't forget the Cynics. They had the dirty hippie thing down first.
posted by y2karl at 10:23 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm just waiting until the trend of dressing up in rat skins and pretending to be a Hun comes back around. That was some bohemianism I could get behind.
posted by Copronymus at 10:23 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


T-shirts start popping up in stores that say "To get to the other side!" or a WALK/DON'T WALK sign with a chicken silhouette instead of a man!

Make that Walk/Don't Walk sign t-shirt and you will sell many.
posted by antifuse at 10:24 AM on May 26, 2010


And living in a barrel--how punk rock is that ?
posted by y2karl at 10:24 AM on May 26, 2010


There's a time to have done your research and it's not when you're twenty.

It's attitudes like that which provided me the most annoyance in my 20s.

In your 20s be outrageous. Be fun. Do drugs. Get political. Get laid. Have wild parties. Work crazy hours. Travel everywhere you can.
But always do your research.
posted by Theta States at 10:25 AM on May 26, 2010 [5 favorites]


It's tremendously stupid to judge people by how they look, amirite?

No, if I had to talk to people before I decided to dislike them, I'd be pissed off all the time. Hey, wait!
posted by yerfatma at 10:27 AM on May 26, 2010


Diogenes went in search of one cool man.
posted by Pope Guilty at 10:30 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


It's tremendously stupid fun|timesaving|noble to judge people by how they look, amirite?
posted by kersplunk at 10:31 AM on May 26, 2010


vbfg's many critics aren't wrong, but getting cornered by any of them at a party would be excruciating.
posted by Scoo at 10:32 AM on May 26, 2010


vbfg's many critics aren't wrong, but getting cornered by any of them at a party would be excruciating.
At least we'd be fashionably dressed.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 10:34 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think we all tend to judge people a little bit based on how they dress. I mean, people aren't masters of disguise. They tend to look pretty much how they are.

And nobody needs to love a hipster. In my plaid pants and vest and chunky glasses and newsboy hat, I'm sure people would put me squarely in the hipster category, and I'm okay with that, and I'm okay if they're not interested in me as a result of that. If they're wearing blue jeans, a t-shirt, a puca necklace, and a backwards baseball cap, I might not be instantly drawn to them either. Perhaps it's not fair, and we're not giving deserving people a chance, but it's a time-saving device, because I meet maybe 1,000 new people per month and if I had to take the time to carefully evaluate every new person I meet, it's all I would do.

So judge away. But keep in mind, the person you might be dismissing is probably dismissing you too, based on that god awful tie you're wearing. Tweety bird? Really?
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:44 AM on May 26, 2010


vbfg's many critics aren't wrong, but getting cornered by any of them at a party would be excruciating.

I know. I'm a terrible bore at parties. Usually I talk people into getting undressed and taking photos of each other. All the next day I get emails begging me not to post photos on Facebook, probably because it would remind them of the excruciating time they had.
posted by Astro Zombie at 10:46 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I hate attractive young people.
posted by Faint of Butt at 10:47 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I hate attractive young people.

ftfm
posted by Nothing... and like it at 10:48 AM on May 26, 2010


I know. I'm a terrible bore at parties. Usually I talk people into getting undressed and taking photos of each other. All the next day I get emails begging me not to post photos on Facebook, probably because it would remind them of the excruciating time they had.

Sir, if you were truly, TRULY a Hipster, you would know that Party Pictures should be posted only to The Cobrasnake. Please update your post-party manual.
posted by jivadravya at 10:54 AM on May 26, 2010


Just opening that URL caused my eyes to burst like overripe tomatoes. Please don't do that to me again.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:01 AM on May 26, 2010


Usually I talk people into getting undressed and taking photos of each other. All the next day I get emails begging me not to post photos on Facebook, probably because it would remind them of the excruciating time they had.

I have an uncle like that. He should be out in ten to twenty.
posted by (Arsenio) Hall and (Warren) Oates at 11:02 AM on May 26, 2010


I mentored with him.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:04 AM on May 26, 2010


Eyeliner for guys! That's the fresh new aspect of androgyny I was hearing about a few years ago that nobody had ever done before.

Nope, Dr Hook was on that in 1975. Or rather Shel Silverstein was. Well, he doesn't say eyeliner but who wears mascara without eyeliner?

Well I paint my face with glitter
Just like Bowie does
And I wear the same mascara
That Mick Jagger does
And I even put some lipstick on
But that just hurt my dad and mom
And everybody's makin' it big but me

posted by irisclara at 11:05 AM on May 26, 2010


Tweety bird? Really?

Hey, this is a genuine leather Looney Tunes jacket!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:07 AM on May 26, 2010



I think everyone goes for girls that look like Leo DiCaprio.

Welcome to this decade, dude.

posted by availablelight at 11:10 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Point being - and to be really, really pedantic: It's tremendously stupid to judge people by how they look, amirite?
posted by jivadravya at 10:11 AM on May 26 [2 favorites +] [!]


If we all stopped, where would Anna Wintour find work?
posted by spacely_sprocket at 11:11 AM on May 26, 2010


Eyeliner for guys! That's the fresh new aspect of androgyny I was hearing about a few years ago that nobody had ever done before.

I've been convinced for 20 years that dudes just look better with eyeliner. All dudes.
posted by sadiehawkinstein at 11:20 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's tremendously stupid to judge people by how they look, amirite?

Well, I'd define fashion as that specific area wherein how we look is not accidental. Making judgments of our non-accidents strikes me as perfectly sensible.

At any rate, no art worthy of its audience plays traffic cop with how they do or do not think about it.
posted by kid ichorous at 11:28 AM on May 26, 2010


If we all stopped, where would Anna Wintour find work?

More to the point, or to elaborate on the initial point, is that here there is a lot of "OMG IT'S TOTALLY OKAY TO JUDGE THOSE RIDICULOUS/ASSHAT/DOUCHEBAG HIPSTERS BY HOW THEY LOOK BUT DON'T DO THE SAME TO ME" and I just think it's ridiculous, all the way around to make gross generalities or to define people by external semaphores, etc, et al, usw.

Or to be more succinct - Born Again$t said it best (sadly not concert footage):

Fuck your version of a world where no one's ugly and no one's old fuck your
version of a beauty that sets the standards for all the runners up fuck your
definition of perfection the smiling commodity that isn't human that isn't
allowed to step off the page and testify this isn't real.

posted by jivadravya at 11:28 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Usually I talk people into getting undressed and taking photos of each other.

I think you and I attend the same boring parties.
posted by Theta States at 11:32 AM on May 26, 2010


This thing is not about an avant garde subculture. Come on, Wal-Mart has ads saying, "We have skinny pants for kids." This is about the mainstreaming of all those gender-bending things that are around for decades. This is about being 10 years old, being a fan of the Hanson Brothers or whatever, and being a dyke who hates wearing skirts (or just a girl who hates skirts) and finding some validation out there.

I know it seems little, but it would have been huge for me, at 10, decades ago. Of course, now, it just feels trite. But maybe trite is needed, y'know. People fight for things 'cause they actually want them to become mainstream and boring. And they still aren't.
posted by TheGoodBlood at 11:34 AM on May 26, 2010 [2 favorites]


I took my 2-year-old son to the beach today.
posted by sciurus at 11:46 AM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


If we all stopped, where would Anna Wintour find work?

BDSM Dungeons.
posted by zarq at 11:46 AM on May 26, 2010


No one in this picture is a dyke, but one of them is me. (We also don't consider ourselves "hipsters", though we do ride bikes and make art and have beards. Is that all it takes?)
posted by rafter at 11:49 AM on May 26, 2010


The flannel shirts push it over the top.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:04 PM on May 26, 2010


I finally realized I was okay with the 21st century when I openly expressed my hatred of Michelle Tea, and to a person, all my gay, straight, bi, black, white and neapolitan friends thought for a second, and agreed. When we can say someone sucks, and not have it be about sexuality, race or anything but about pure lack of skill or reason, that my friends, is progress.

So uhh, thanks for not linking her because I actually was able to read these articles without throwing things and gritting my teeth into powder due to horrible writing. The ideas, were weak, but at least the writing was okay.
posted by 1f2frfbf at 12:07 PM on May 26, 2010


We Are All Lesbians Now.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:13 PM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


I've been convinced for 20 years that dudes just look better with eyeliner. All dudes.

I'm now imagining my husband with the Fat Bob look and it's hurting my brain. (I say this with love for Fat Bob, whose music current and past I adore. Also for my husband, who is best described as a giant Viking preppy bear.)
posted by immlass at 12:15 PM on May 26, 2010


No one in this picture is a dyke, but one of them is me. (We also don't consider ourselves "hipsters", though we do ride bikes and make art and have beards. Is that all it takes?)

There's homogeneity there that does make it look a little like a uniform.
posted by Devils Rancher at 12:18 PM on May 26, 2010


In a related vein, PBR was sold for $250 million. TANKS JEEBUS
posted by jivadravya at 12:52 PM on May 26, 2010


In a related vein, PBR was sold for $250 million.

And they still don't have, y'know, a brewery. It's just a label, brewed under contract anyplace that has excess capacity.
posted by fixedgear at 3:28 PM on May 26, 2010


And they still don't have, y'know, a brewery

Um, hello, they have the hipsteriest brewery ever!

it's only resting
posted by Nothing... and like it at 3:54 PM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


It's a huge redevelopment project in Milwaukee.
posted by desjardins at 4:07 PM on May 26, 2010 [1 favorite]


Right now, I'm just holding out for a flash game - where a succession of subcultures try to walk across an old guy's lawn, and he has to run inside to his wardrobe & grab the items they've appropriated & then repel the lawn-invaders with them.

If he swats an invader bearing a manifesto, he gets a bonus rampage round, armed with all the accoutrements of all subcultures!

Watch as he stuns them with a glowstick dance, dazzles them with be-bop poetry, all the while kicking them in the face with his Docs from the aerial tricks he's performing on his skateboard! To a rockabilly-hiphop-disco mashup soundtrack!
posted by UbuRoivas at 8:37 PM on May 26, 2010 [7 favorites]


Huh. So that's where all the silver-studded leather bracelets are coming from these days?
posted by MaiaMadness at 3:42 AM on May 27, 2010


Hmm... I really have no problem with this style at all. Snazzy outfits, great haircuts– can't hate. It's a great way for a gal to be stylish and sexy without resorting to slutty. This sort of style is the end product of someone who likes fashion and likes to look good but doesn't care about looking good for men in a traditional fuckme sort of way. I like it.
posted by bobobox at 6:04 AM on May 27, 2010 [1 favorite]


And they still don't have, y'know, a brewery. It's just a label, brewed under contract anyplace that has excess capacity.

Uh, what? It's brewed by Miller-Coors.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:31 AM on May 27, 2010


And they still don't have, y'know, a brewery. It's just a label, brewed under contract by Miller-Coors. Thanks, Pope Guilty.
posted by fixedgear at 1:48 PM on May 27, 2010


oooh look, is this the thread where we argue about the definition of what makes a hipster?

yanno, based on most of the photos out of the meetup threads, this whole pointing-fingers-and-laughing-at-hipsters-dressing-weirdly thing on MeFi feels kinda recursive. Imma step out now before all this circular logic makes me dizzy and I fall down and puke or something.
posted by lonefrontranger at 1:50 PM on May 27, 2010


SRY LEZBOS, hipster precedes sexuality.

Plus also, I was making fun of hipsters in print starting 2002 and I got there late. Nuffink new.
posted by klangklangston at 8:17 PM on May 27, 2010


That's quite different from "brewed under contract anyplace that has excess capacity."
posted by Pope Guilty at 8:18 AM on May 28, 2010


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