Seapunk

Okay. Let's talk about yesterday's outfit; as it's my take on my new favorite style/subculture. Seapunk. Seaaaaaapuuuuunk. Sea. Punk. Seapunk! Yes, it's basically exactly what it sounds like, but we're gonna dig into it in this post.

I first became aware of Seapunk while reading Lumberjanes #17, which features a bunch of badass punk rock mer-people.

You should definitely be reading Lumberjanes if you're not already, btw.

I felt just like April in that last panel. Mermaids? Punk rock? Two of favorite things were meeting??  I was honestly surprised it had never crossed my mind to mash them up. Mermaids are pretty badass to begin with; if you really think about it. Women who lure men to their death with song? How more badass  riot grrrl punk rock does it get? I finished the issue and googled punk rock mermaids. I needed more. And low and behold, I stumbled upon seapunk. 

Seapunk originated on Tumblr in 2011. Seapunk is an aquatic-themed style of fashion, 3Dnet art iconography, and 1990s pop culture allusions. It's basically a lifestyle aesthetic that is all things oceanic and of the sea. (Fun sidenote; earlier this year a group of environmentalist seapunk activists protested against British Petroleum's sponsorship of a sunken cities exhibition at the British Museum in London, and calling themselves a "splash mob," dressed as mermaids and pirates in iridescent metallic blue and green clothing, sang sea shanties, and put on a theatrical performance with a black and neon green Kraken puppet).

Musically; seapunk "constitutes a tiny music subgenre" that has elements of witch house, chiptune, drum and bass and southern rap. The only seapunk artist I can really think of is that i would say is 100% about that life is Grimes, however Kreayshawn, Nicki Minaj, Soulja Boy, Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Azealia Banks, Rihanna, and Frank Ocean have used the aesthetic.

Fashion; seapunks often wear bright green, blue, turquoise, cyan or aquamarine clothing, featuring nautical themes such as mermaids or dolphins, plastic Ray Ban wayfarers, shell jewelry, feathers, tartan overshirts associated with the surfer subculture, baseball caps, tie dye, transparent plastic jackets, and skipper caps. Symbols such as yin-yangs, smiley faces and references to the 1990s are also a part of the style. 

Hair and makeup; seapunks often dye their hair, and sometimes facial hair, with varying shades of turquoise, lilac, and sea blue.

Take a deep breath, and say it with me; seapunk. We're doing it. We're buying into it. We love it.

My seapunk look today consisted of; 

Rob Zombie Great American Nightmare T-Shirt (That I modified by cutting off the collar and might distress further - I haven't made up my mind.)

Mermaid Scale Leggings

Iron First Velvet Batwing Boots (Sans wings)

And a denim jacket that I've had for ages, so I can't link directly to it; but I found a nice one by Levi's.

I took it simple today and paired the outfit with a few of my "staple" accesories; a basic ring, choker, necklace - but I didn't do really festive pieces, because I wanted my leggings to shine. It's also why I paired it with this Zombie tee - there's a lot of green in the graphic to match the leggings and I definitely think Zombie would get behind the idea of badass killer punk rock mermaids. 

I've also got the following pieces in my closet that are definitely going to contribute to future looks; 

Tuk Metallic Boots

Silver Mermaid Bikini (I can wear it as is to the beach, or pair each piece separately for a fun festival look)

Little Mermaid Damask Crop Top (Duh, of course you can use Ariel in your seapunk looks.

On my seapunk wishlist; 

TopShop Sequin Jeans (I would never buy these for that price. I'm actually going to make a pair of my own for way beneath that price - keep your eyes on this space for a tutorial)

Little Mermaid Stockings

H&M Gold Booties

H&M Leggings

Iron Fist Bone Deep Maxi Dress

Valfre Bomber Jacket

Jade London Mermaid Body S

Mermaid Scale Sneakers

Valfre Mermaid Disco Skirt

Isolated Heroes Bomber Jacket

Sugarbaby Seadream Gladiator Platforms

Mermaid Skeleton Patch

As you can probably tell, my personal take on seapunk relies heavily on a dark mermaid vibe; I stress the punk part of the name; maybe I'm more sea-emo or seagoth. Whatever. Make it your own. If you're more into pastels than by all means do the pastel mermaid thing. Make it your own, kids! That's why fashion is fun. 

MAKEUP

You can be as natural, beachy, and ethereal OR as dramatic as you'd like when it comes to a seapunk makeup look. I would highly recommend Urban Decay eyeshadow in Lounge; it's a red/green pigmented shadow that changes color depending on how the light hits it. MERMAID or what?

Urban Decay Lounge

Also, don't forget your highlighter. You want to look like you just came to shore and the sun kissed the water droplets on your face and make you sparkle like a diamond. 

HAIR

I prefer my seapunk hair red. Like Ariel. Duh. I added a crown braid with a soft wave today, because what's more mermaid than wavy hair and random braids? 

MUSIC

I made a mini-playlist, because duh. This is me we're talking about. Everything needs a soundtrack. 

Until next time.

XO

OCTOBER PLAYLIST

It's raining in Los Angeles today and I feel like I have ascended to my full power. It's supposed to go back up to 90 by mid-week, but I'm not letting that ruin my beautiful, glorious, rain filled morning. I've been listening to some emotional, gloomy, angsty music, and sipping my tea like it's the best morning of my life.

I read somewhere that it takes between 1-2 years for blogs to really settle into their niche, find their voice, and build their following. I feel really good about that fact, because I'm going to be changing and shaking things up around here again. I've been building a new plan, setting a calendar, getting things together. I've been really inspired by one of my best pals over at www.urbanavixen.com, Rini Foxworthy. Her blog is amazing; she's going to build an empire. 

This space is going to be solidifying it's voice and going through a small transformation into an alternative lifestyle blog. This really boils down to MORE POSTS with more diverse topics, and a new layout. That's always been my goal; to have a lifestyle/life/beauty/fashion blog for girls who are a bit more Hayley Williams than Lauren Conrad. However, I had a lack of resources and my life wasn't exactly where I wanted it to be in order to authentically create that content and at some point, I lost some of my passion and felt the blogging industry was bogus. I've written about there here. Things have changed; I've been re-inspired by the recent, positive changes in my life. So, keep your eyes on this space. Things are changing in great ways.

To the point of the post; here's the October playlist! Full of some old school, long time favorite, creepster jams.  

black girl in white space

I've been thinking about what happened to Solange (http://pitchfork.com/news/68197-solange-discusses-hostility-in-predominately-white-spaces-after-kraftwerk-concert-incident/) a lot since it happened. I posted about it on Facebook, and haven't talked about it since, but I've been thinking about it. I am a black person who spends the majority of my time in white spaces. And while I don't live my life feeling uncomfortable, I know EXACTLY what Solange is talking about. Please believe me, this was not an isolated incident that she experienced. This is just part of our lives.

I remember being about 8 years old and being obsessed with No Doubt. Rock radio in general. My older brother warned me, "don't be one of those weird black girls who listens to Green Day and stuff". I became one of those weird black girls who listened to Green Day. I don't think he was trying to clip my wings, I think he was being a protective, albeit misguided, older brother. He knew it wasn't going to be easy for me. Being a weird black kid at a predominately white school was hell; I've already blogged about that (SPHS + WOC = ? http://www.lambertraa.com/blog/2016/1/27/sphs-woc-). This is not that, but that's part of this.

I go a lot of shows. A LOT. Everyone who knows me, knows this. My first show was the 2003 Honda Civic Tour with Good Charlotte and New Found Glory headlining. My mom took me, because she felt I was too young to go to Hollywood with one of my friends no supervision. This was not my mom's scene, so she was a little curious. She looked around after we had been there for a few minutes, "We're the only black people here." She paused, "You're unique, Jordan. That's cool." We had a great time that night, my mom walked about liking New Found Glory a lot. She got an insight into the person I was becoming; I got to see my favorite bands and bond with her. It was a really good night. However, I was learning that not everyone would find my uniqueness as cool as my mother did. And, this night would set a precedent. This wasn't the only time I'd be the only black person at a show.

AFI is my favorite fucking band of all time. I live and breathe by Davey Havok. If it was the holy quadriology and not trinity it would be the father, the son, the holy spirit, and Davey Havok in my eyes. The first time I saw AFI live was in support of Decemberunderground; my friends and I drove five hours to Bakersfield to see them. We were in the pit, before they started, and someone said "What the hell is that black girl doing here?" Of all the things I expected to happen at that show, that wasn't one of them. I deflated. I loved AFI. I had been listening to AFI for five years. I was literally a card carrying member of their fan club. This was my first chance to see them live. I had been dreaming of this show for ages. I belonged there. And here was this yokel, questioning me, because of the color of my skin. My white best friend, didn't skip a beat. "What the fuck did you just say about my friend?" We were with a crowd of 20 Despair Faction (AFI fan club) members. They all knew me from the message board, they all rallied around me and made that bigot know he wasn't welcome in our pit. Hours later, when Davey Havok was godwalking through the crowd and his basically standing on my head, I wasn't thinking about what had just happened. But, it's something I never forgot. It stung. This wasn't the last time something like that happened.

I have been to several shows where been one of few, if not the only, black persons there. I have been to several shows where I've been called out for it. While the landscape of the scene has changed and it is far more inclusive now; I've been through my share of shit. I saw Marilyn Manson three times on the same tour; the second time a white male asked me if I knew who Marilyn Manson was and if I was at the right show. I took my nephew to see Black Veil Brides and Falling In Reverse. It was his first show and his favorite bands were playing. We were the only black people there, and I could tell it bothered him when he noticed and pointed it out. I reassured him it didn't matter, we were there for the music and that was all that mattered. And thank God, Set It Off opened, and Dan Clermont, their guitarist is magical black man. I pointed out Dan, and told my nephew again, this is our scene, too. I punched a guy in the face during a Thrice set at a festival, and it was one of the most affirming moments of my life. You will not push me during this set, you will not try and get in front of me, you will not take my space; I fucking belong here, this is my scene. I planned to meet with friends at Taste of Chaos, and we tried to plan a meeting spot. "I'll be hiding from the sun", a friend said. "I'll be one of six black people", I laughed. "You think there will be that many there?" It's funny, but it's not. I met the vocalist for Old Wounds at Warped in their merch tent, we had a great time talking and I promised I'd be at their next LA show, "I'll be looking for you", he said. "I'll be the only black girl there." He sighed, "I hope not!". We laughed, but the scene isn't a space readily accesible to people of color. It's far more welcoming than other places; I've been to country concerts and almost left, because people were flying the confederate flag as they tailgated.

This isn't a concert issue. This is an America issue. But, that should be obivous. My mom and I go to a lot of museums, it's kind of our thing. We get a lot of odd looks. We got called 'colored' by a security gaurd at the Norton Simon, who was radioing his boss about our 'suspicious behavior'. The first time I got followed around a store, I was 10 years old in a high end beauty supply store, shopping with my mother. We didn't look like belonged in that shop, in that neighborhood. Honestly, I can't even go to Trader Joe's without a white person asking me if I know how to cook those brussel sprouts and offering me their shitty ass recipe on the spot, or asking me how if I buy flowers often. They aren't being a friendly. I know someone is going to come into my comments and say they're being friendly. There's a tone of voice, a demeanor, the way they say it. You know when you're being talked down to. You know when it's because you're black. I was racially profiled at Disneyland of all places. I got accused of stealing, because I'm young, I'm black, and the woman thought I couldn't afford the high end Disney luggage I had used for my stay at the Disneyland hotel; so I must have been trying to shoplift it from the giftshop. How do I know this? Because my white best friend walked right past her, also carrying souvenirs out in the open, and she didn't get anything but a, "Have a magical day".

The only bright spot I can think of in all of this, is the excitment of seeing another black person in a white space. You may not know this if you're not a POC, but POC get really excited to see other POC in public, in white spaces. We are not alone. We are not tokens. This is a place for us, too. At Warped 2016, a black kid I didn't know became my best friend for five minutes, because we were two of four black people screaming the lyrics to New Found Glory and dancing our hearts out. Twice, my mom and I have been at museum exhibits, and gotten told special museum secrets by security gaurds, because they were so happy to see other black people there. My family was stopped at the Renaissance Faire by a black performer, who was very happy to see people from "her land", at the faire. I held a long conversation about the price of bread with a woman at Trader Joe's, because the same rude white woman had almost ran her cart into the both of us. The only black performer at Medieval Times gave his flowers to my mom, because he was happy to see us in the front row. We are here, we exist, our presence is valid.

I'm not writing this to bitch and moan and complain about how hard it is to be black. I love being me. Part of being me is being black. I wouldn't change that for the world. But, I feel more and more it's my job as a black person, and a black person with a platform (even if it's a small one like this blog), to use my platform and affirm and validate the voices and struggle of my brothers and sisters. Because, it feels like no one believes us. Everyone wants to discount. People want to say the world has gotten to sensitive, too politically correct, all lives matter; instead of saying, something isn't right here. Let's do better.

The instances I referred to at shows have lessened the older I've gotten. I've made way more friends and am usually known when I go out. The scene has become more inclusive. I like to believe it's because of people like me, who were passionate about the music they loved, and wouldn't let their discomfort at being in a white space stop them. We have to keep doing this. We can't be shy. We have to be brave, and bold, and passionate. We have to knock on doors and bang them down. We have to let other people know I belong here, and you do too. And, if something like what happened to Solange happens to us, we have to talk about it. We have to affirm each other's voices.

I think I'm done. The next post I'm planning will also be show focused, but it's going to be more lighthearted.

Until then. I'm gonna close this out with some of my favorite concert photos I've taken. There's a lot of Davey.

xo

EDITED TO ADD: Dude. I feel like this post is now even more relevant today RE: Tim Burton's ignorant ass comments about the lack of diversity in his films. He was probably blind sided by the question, but his answer was really stupid. As a HUGE fan of his work, it was totally disheartening and reminded me of how "bad" I felt being a black person who was into his creepy aesthetic, because I never saw myself fitting into that world, because there was literally no one who looked like me. TO DO: Make film shorts about a creepy black girl, aka black Vampira.

September Playlist

We're right at beginning of my FAVORITE time of year. Crunchy leaves, pumpkin flavored things, horror movies, sliding into sweet potato pies, quality time with family and friends, the holidays at Disneyland, Christmas tree lots, AND CALIFORNIA'S SWELTERING FUCKING HEAT, BECAUSE THE SUN HASN'T GOTTEN THE MEMO I WANT TO WEAR SWEATERS AND BOOTS AND CAN ONLY MAKE SO MANY CUTE OUTFITS OUT OF JEANS AND TANK TOPS, BECAUSE IT'S TOO GODDAMNED HOT.

This playlist is a week late. I've been REALLY FUCKING BUSY. Concerts, Disneyland, Hair appointments, tattoo sessions, binge watching Stranger Things, drinking Pumpkin Spice Lattes, etc.

Also, still working on NEW BLOG/VLOG! format and direction and whatnot. Good things are coming. I've been saying that for over a year, but trust me. We're in this together.

Anyway. Here are some songs I really dig.  I tried to infuse some Indian summer* vibes into this one.

*As someone with Native heritage, and who also isn't an idiot, I am aware this term has fucking offensive origins. But literally every other phrase I found that describes the same weather pattern is also FUCKING OFFENSIVE, as well as not being well known. So, the writer in me deferred.