Women's Punk Clothing
The punk style emerged in the 1970s as an attitude-infused anti-fashion movement. The "true" punk persists today as such. Punk is more broadly accepted and acknowledges for dancing how you want, vandalizing a little, speaking one’s mind, getting loud, challenging the assumptions of others, and being labeled as angry.
Recently, bondage pants have come into style. These are the pants with straps and chains dangling between the backs of the legs. Plaid is very punk as well, in zippered pants and skirts, as well as suspenders. Black is a near-necessary color for a punk outfit, but not the only one: punk is not goth. The main difference here is that punk often uses black as a backdrop to accentuate a loud dash of bright color, rather than giving black center stage.
Punk isn't goth, nor is it emo. Emo is the best name to use for the Victorian-influenced, pretty, frilly punk now popularized. Punk is more daring, more shocking, and more dangerous than emo.
What is punk?
Punk is a subculture. It is a movement that appeared in the mid-'70s and it was very popular for about a decade. Even today, there are marks of it all around. It focuses on punk rock music but it also incorporates a large variety of ideologies and different forms of expression. Here, one cannot forget to mention the arts, movies, music, etc. This subculture promotes the freedom of the individual.
The origins and history of punk fashion
In Britain, punk was a movement essentially made of deprived working-class white youths. There is a strong connection between the punk phenomenon and the economic and social inequalities in Great Britain. Punk was one of the many white youth subcultures that sparkled after the Second World War.
Today, everyone knows what punk fashion is. But in 1970, it didn’t exist. Punk first emerged in the mid-1970s in London as an anarchic and aggressive movement. About 200 young people defined themselves as an anti-fashion urban youth street culture. Closely aligned was a music movement that took the name punk. The clothes they wore suited the lifestyle of this group of people, which were limited to cash. This was due to the unemployment and the general low-income school leavers or students.
The punks started to cut up old clothes they could find from charity and thrift shops. They would destroy the fabric, and refashioned the outfits in a manner that was then thought of as a raw construction technique. The result was making garments that will attract attention. These deconstructed garments came into new forms and look. The torn fabrics, the frayed edges, and the defaced prints are now in the 21st century considered normal, but in the 1970s, it would shock many people. This is because they have never been seen before. Until then, all the fabrics and the clothes have been treated as a material to keep – shiny, new looking, and beautiful as much as possible.
Trousers, in particular, were deliberately torn so that they would reveal laddered tights and dirty legs. The most typical punk looks would include them being were worn with heavy Doc Martens footwear. This was a utilitarian, practical traffic meter maid type of footwear in that era, not seen on many young women until then. Additionally, the safety pins and chains would hold bits of fabric together. Neck chains were made from padlocks and chains and even razor blades were used as pendants. The latter emerged as a mainstream fashion status symbol a few years later, when they were done in gold.
These were the origins of punk clothing, hairstyles, and fashion. A lot of punk clothing followed a do-it-yourself aesthetic. Some slogans were added to shirts and jackets with paint or markers. Thrift-store finds were full of safety pins, splattered with bleach or distressed with razor blades. Odd combinations were also popular, such as women wearing pink ballet tutus with army-surplus combat boots and men's work shirts. The punk aesthetic went all the way to hairstyles. It would often spike into wild shapes such as the famous mohawk, and colored with store-bought hair products. Homemade body adornments were also popular and the safety pin as a body piercing became iconic of the punk movement.
Soon after that, when the world saw the popularity and the influence punk has on the youth and fashion in general, the clothing manufacturers started producing their lines of punk clothing. Some young punks embraced these pre-made punk styles and saw no contradiction in purchasing punk clothing at the mall. Other punks reacted with horror at what they saw as the commercial co-opting of their rebellious aesthetic. These punks rebelled further, creating many offshoots of punk culture with their fashion styles. Leather bondage gear; used work clothing and boots; and outfits held together with string, rope, were not uncommon.
Bondage in the early punk days
The black leather, the studs, the chains, mufti fabrics, greyed sweated out black T-shirts, bondage animal print bum flaps and leg straps were just some of the statement looks that immediately come to mind when thinking of the era of the early punks. Something that was so far thought to be blatant and obvious sexual references in the written form now came on dyed and destroyed vests. Again, it became a norm and the masses were happily wearing T-shirts with slogans like with fcuk or crave.
Modern punk fashion
When it comes to modern punk fashion, one cannot miss but mention the high-end fashion designer Vivienne Westwood. As a designer, she partnered up with Malcolm McLaren and set the new rules of modern punk fashion.
Punk as a style became even more successful when Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren publicized the ideas through their joint design ventures. McLaren launched the 'Sex Pistols‘ Punk music group. This punk group wore clothes from a shop called ‘Sex‘ that Vivienne Westwood and her partner Malcolm McLaren opened on Kings Road, London. There, they would sell leather and rubber fetish goods, especially bondage trousers. Later this shop was renamed Seditionaries.
Not long after that, Westwood alone renamed the same shop as 'World's End. She saw this as a way to express her ideas into the fresher Pirate and Romantic looks. Her collections were innovative, but some thought of them as unwearable. However, other designers picked up on her ideas and soon started another new trend.
In years later, as her talent developed, her moods and methods towards punk fashion changed. She mastered tailoring techniques combined with flair, frivolity, and sexuality creating new looks. With a long stream of firsts behind her, Vivienne Westwood is now considered to be one of the most innovative punk designers of the 20th century.
As mentioned above, the fashion in the 1980s tended to be loud and provocative. And, the styles flaunted by the punk music fans of the day were no different. The committed punks set themselves apart by rebelling against the status quo, wearing bright colors and intentionally torn clothes decorated with in-your-face slogans and accessories. So, whether you hope to channel the '80s punk style exactly or you want to incorporate this iconic trend into a more current look, there are few indispensable wardrobe pieces that should help define your ensemble.
And there is no better punk design shop than Punk Design.
Nailing the best punk outfits can be done by choosing the right garments. To do that successfully, you should Pick clothing in materials and textures that were often worn by '80s punks. Some of the most commonly used materials that defined the era’s punk fashion include leather, vinyl, mesh, and shredded denim. For example, girls can put on a leather or faux-leather mini-skirt and a mesh over-shirt. Additionally, you can wear clothing emblazoned with provocative slogans and patterns to channel the original 1980s punk trends. The common motifs included a defiled image of the Union Jack or the Queen of England, and anti-authority symbols or phrases. Many punks of the time wore clothing with clashing patterns, such as a striped t-shirt with a plaid skirt or leopard-print pants.
Another styling tip includes bright colors. Accent your outfits with bright colors. Most punks of the day incorporated loud colors from neon green to electric blue into their outfits. They would wear these in-your-face colors in multiple layers. On the other hand, black was also widely worn with standout pieces in black leather, lace, or mesh.
An outfit is not complete if you do not add accessories. Choose at least a few eye-catching accessories, as they tend to make '80s punk style stand out from similar edgy trends. Go with leg warmers, colorful necklaces, and bangle bracelets, dangling earrings, or other piercing jewelry. Belts are another '80s punk accessory that helped define the fashion genre, particularly leather belts with studs or spikes. Or, fingerless or full-fingered wrist-length leather gloves. You can add to your look colorful fishnet stockings, or transform old pairs by wearing them as elbow-length, fingerless gloves.
Must-have punk fashion staples
Skinny Jeans and comfort go hand in hand with punk fashion. Whether they’re baggy or tight, they’re a definite must-have, especially when you layer on a few patches or spikes.
While jeans and pants can be argued as the same thing, that couldn't be further from the truth. While jeans are a form of pants, they are their own entity. Punk pants usually refer to do-it-yourself pants or Franken pants. They're stitched together from parts of pants long past, creating a visually interesting look.
Vests may not seem very punk rock before they've seen the hands of the punk him or herself, but, they're definitely a staple. If you aren't a fan of a plain vest, get some fabric paint and unleash your inner creativity, sew on some patches, or use some spikes to roughen up the look.
Spikes, studs, anything metal that can be easily attached to the outfit are a definite staple in punk fashion. While they may seem a little abrasive at first, they create interest in most punk accessories.
Chains are extremely useful with punk fashion, they can be worn as belts, dangling at your hip, or can be used as jewelry. They help to once again create a rough edge to the punk rock outfit.
Jewelry may seem overrated for punks, but, more often than not you're going to see them wearing leather or spiked wrist cuffs, plugs in their ears, body jewelry, skull necklaces, or an array of other jewelry accessories that help to create a cohesive look.
Alternative materials such as vinyl lend themselves well to punk fashion, especially for female punks who want to wear something a little more feminine with a bite to it.
Sporting band T-shirts is key to punks, especially when they're supporting their favorite bands. While they may not always wear them true to their nature and may create something a little more DIY from their band T-shirts, they're a major component of punk fashion.
Skirts, especially for the female punks, are a definite staple for punk rock culture. Whether they're short or tight, there are several different shapes of edgy skirts to flatter just about any body type out there. Remember, anything can be made to have that punk rock edge to it, don't shy away from a skirt because it doesn't first scream "punk", and make it that way.
Wrist bands, whether they be thin strips or thick chunky wrist bands are a bold fashion statement for punks. They can either be useful such as a thick leather strapped watch or more decorative like a spiked wristband. They are an eye-catching accessory commonly found worn by lovers of punk rock.
Predominantly worn by women, fishnets are a great staple punk rock clothing item. They can be worn by men or women, and are oftentimes seen at live shows because they promote staying cool while in the midst of the pit.
Take a look at our wide offer of punk clothes and accessories at Punk design.