Many people mistakenly believe that the Gothic is a modern style, but actually such jewelry was designed in the Middle Ages. Jewelry of that time was massive, ripped and usually carried a kind of symbolic content, that is inherent to cultural traditions of the Middle Ages. So what is the Gothic style, how to wear it, and what jewelry pieces can be called Gothic? All the answers you will find in my new post about jewelry styles.
As you probably imagine modern jewelry pieces, made in the Gothic style – are mostly crosses, heavy chains, pins, emblems, skulls, swords. Most of these pieces highlight the aggression and brutality of its owner, but there are also ornaments having a romantic character.
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Origin of the term:
The term “Gothic” was introduced by Giorgio Vasari, an Italian architect, painter and writer who was considered one of the first art historians. He refers to the Germanic tribe as Goths, they played an important role in the fall of the Roman Empire. According to Vasari´s criterion and in comparison to the refined lines of classical architecture, Goths were considered an inferior and barbaric culture, as well as the architecture of that moment. However, Gothic architecture would last until XVI century, before being absorbed by the Renaissance trend.
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Milan Cathedral, Lombardia, Italia
It was an artistic style emerged in Western Europe at the end of the Middle Ages, XII century, until the fifteenth XV century in Italy and for the rest of the continent until XVI century. It began in the North of France and spread throughout the West, although it takes place at different times in different regions or countries. In France the city of Paris and the region of Provence stand out categorically, on the other hand in Italy, it was characterized for being more traditional and classic. Although, paradoxically, the emblematic Cathedral of Milan which represents one of the churches with the most catholic cult in the world, is situated in the North of Italy.
This art emerged at the same time as the cities arise, where the bourgeoisie, the universities and new religious orders were developed as well as the popular revolts, heresy and scholastic crisis were accentuated, ending with the black plague and the hundred years’ war. Without a doubt all these facts represented a great transformation for humanity.
At that time, architecture enhances significantly, with its unmistakable, tall and stylized cathedrals and monasteries allowing with great majesty the entrance of the light, to “free men from darkness”. These beliefs come from the Neoplatonic philosophical currents, of the concept of God and the light. Another feature of these structures was the predominance of the Latin cross, this element became an icon of Latin Christianity and was used in the heads of the churches and they were oriented towards the East. Most of these works were created over several centuries, due to the complexity of building these great architectural works, their initial builders, children and probably their grandchildren did not have the opportunity to see them completed. It should be noted that not all of them survived, there were many trial and errors tests, only those who managed the vicissitudes of weather and time remains standing.
The Gothic Subculture:
It is an underground movement, an English term that defines countercultural tendencies, it means that they consider themselves contrary or alien to the official culture of a country or region, existing in parallel to what society considers normal. It began in the United Kingdom at the end of the 70’s and early 80’s with the appearance of the gothic rock, which is a group of musical rhythms having in common the taste for the sinister. Its origin comes from post-punk, its aesthetic style is highly influenced by literature and horror films and to a lesser degree by the BDMS culture (which refers to: Bondage and Discipline, Domination and Submission, Sadism and Masochism) which is a term created to cover a whole group of erotic practices and fantasies, hence the use of leather garments and accessories. Great bands of the British gothic rock come from that current: Joy Division, Bauhaus and The Cure.
The origin of this genre and its culture began basically with the opening of a famous club called Batcave, at the beginning of 1980 and by the end of the decade they had achieved a great international success, spreading not only its music, but also its style, clothes, jewelry and accessories.
Nowadays, members of the subgothic culture share aesthetic, musical and cultural tastes despite the diversity of several subgenres and styles, what they reflect in common is basically an appearance with a tendency towards dark and somber, which ranges from the style of death rock or metal, punk or androgynous style with more irreverent looks of the Victorian aesthetic of the Renaissance. However, both are characterized by black outfits, makeup to highlight the paleness of the face with vampire styles and black or red lipsticks.
The main features of Gothic jewelry
Preferences by producing Gothic ornaments are given to white gold, silver and platinum, that is, the so-called white metals. Probably, such a love for the white color is due to the fact that the bright precious metal emphasize the darkness and heaviness of black stones more profitable, which encrust Gothic pieces. Onyx is used more often, but other precious crystals that add brightness decoration are welcome: these are large rubies, emeralds. Stones, just as the jewel should be catchy and massive. The inserts are used as a contrasting color stones – rubies, sapphires, black diamonds. It is not difficult to guess that such a color palette could imply: red – blood, black and dark blue – gloom, darkness.
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Despite the fact that modern “Goths” evoke associations with darkness, rigidity and occult rituals, Jewerly Gothic style in its original historical sense is the connection of thin lacy lines, often supplemented with pearl accents. As the English Gothic cathedrals, different lancet arches and sharp angles, these decorations convey the mystery not through rudeness, but rather – through grace.
It is worth noting that, in fact, the term Gothic jewelry has several kinds that sometimes contradicts with each other. Pieces made in these styles – are the most beautiful, spectacular, elegant and refined decorations. Most often, all these jewels are created manually, using white pearls, as well as lace patterns.
Androgyn Goth – is the typical representative of what people mean by ornaments in the Gothic style. Most often, these products are asexual in appearance – collars, spikes, bandages, solid ring, for example, for the entire phalanx. Each jewel is of this area is complemented by “classical” Gothic symbolism.
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And the last line of the Gothic style – Vampyre Goth, which has a clear focus vampire. This style is associated with the dark side of life, death and the afterlife. The most common jewelry of this line have cobweb image, bats and other attributes of vampire existence.
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However, until now we didn’t talk about the modern gothic jewelry, precisely speaking how designers see the style of our time. But the gothic style is not a modern trend, in the Middle Ages existed jewelry made in Gothic. The rings were valued at all times, so they were decorated with large, eye-catching and colorful stones. The massiveness of the rings also played a significant role in the Gothic style. In the late Gothic period, jewelers began to decorate rings of religious subjects, so that a sharp denial of the church of Gothic style is actually not quite justified, in my time religious attributes also apply to this area.
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Today, there are not many Gothic brands, but there are designers and design houses that have made individuals collections, created specifically for this type of style. As for jewelry, they are distinguished by being modern, young, free and daring and by the use of materials such as titanium, leather and, of course, large precious stones.
And the last thing I have to say about the Gothic style, is that, if you prefer to wear jewelry in this style, then you should wear the right clothes. Maybe the Gothic style is the only trend that requires the right choice of clothes. It is a style that includes clothing, music, accessories and attitude, prevailing dark or red lips and nails, black clothes, in the case of women high heels accompanied by corsets made of leather with lace details, giving a touch of romance and Victorian style.
Other styles jewelry can be worn with different clothes and on different occasions. But when choosing the Gothic style, it is necessary to consider everything mentioned above.
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