Japanese Goth Takes You to Fashion’s Darker Side


Japan's Gothic Lolita, a fascinatingly elaborate mix of traditional Lolita looks and Gothic punk, is featured in a new book hitting shelves next week, aptly titled Japanese Goth. Victorian-inspired clothes mixed with dark makeup, anime inspiration, lace, and hats made out of hair define the movement in terms of fashion, all of which fills the pages of the new tome. "Gothic culture in Japan doesn't mean listening to Bauhaus and wearing all black," says author Tiffany Godoy, a Tokyo-based fashion writer who co-created the book with Ivan Vartanian. "It explores core elements of Japanese culture like the supernatural, fantasy, folklore, religion, eroticism, gender, beauty, and performance, among others." And though the fashion speaks for itself, these inspirations propel the movement. "I'm trying to understand why their style is so different from anywhere else in the world," Godoy says. "There are so many elements that come into play: the island culture and mentality, isolationism, the shift of culture from pre– and post–World War II. I want to truly reflect the culture and ideas of the various scenes." Click ahead to see how the Gothic Lolita is reflected with a preview inside the book.

Japanese Goth by Tiffany Godoy and Ivan Vartanian [Rizzoli]