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CREEPY creatures you pin to your clothes?


The Goth movement, with bizarre black clothes, creepy spiders and strange creatures has caused many to take a second glance. Many say WHAT WERE THEY THINKING? When you think about it and take a peek back in time at the 19th century aesthetic movement, you can get a better of idea of how all this might have gotten started. Maybe Goth IS the new aesthetic movement? Maybe it is the sincerest form of flattery to replicate an era or style and to add your own personal touch to it?

IN the early 19th century, “fads” were taking place in a way that would soon create trends that people would talk about for years. The aesthetic movement, of whom Darwin was a very important part of, was full of shock and horror and intrigue and it drew people ( especially women) by the droves. He had theories that were “out there” to most, concerning evolution and nature . Bringing attention to new botanical discoveries, he created popular and a very UNUSUAL interests in the natural world.

The first interest or “fad”, was the incorporation of these bizarre creatures into personal accessories.

LIVE beetles on my dress you say?? Oh no!! not me… but then it happened and the fad dictated you wear these enameled and jeweled pieces and to cringe and revel in the glory of the compliments you received when wearing these living insects on your dress. Some typical aesthetic jewelry items were jeweled butterflies, gold houseflies, enameled beetles, silver monkeys, and of course the living “pet“ beetle that came with his very own jeweled color and leash . I have to say Victorians has no reservations about using body parts of animals or insects. Squeamish? Well they weren’t and they used some of the most bizarre parts. A brooch made from a grouse foot (a game bird) or a whole hummingbird head taxidermied and set into gold or silver. Teeth? Oh yes! They wore it all. When you see designers who use these creatures, you can go all the way down the line from coro to Boucher and see their artistic take on insects and birds. Newer artisan are also using the ”shock “ value of animal jewelry in necklaces, bracelets, earrings and rings. Be it Goth or aesthetic or your own personal taste, these pieces are very enamoring and certainly quite the conversation starters!

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