How to dress indie, look indie, be indie
How To Be Indie
of all, if you need to read a guide on the internet to become indie,
then you have a long way to go. But luckily for you, you were smart
enough to come to me, lumberjack. Throughout my years of
clear cutting virgin forests and other unsustainable logging, I have
come to be somewhat of an expert on indie culture. And I'm going to
pass it on to you! My indie fashion advice is topknotch if I do say so myself.
How to Dress Indie
don't have to "Suffer for Fashion" like of Montreal to be indie.
Rather, indie clothing is some of the best clothing available today!
The basics of dressing indie:
Cardigans, ironic indie tees, flannel shirts, plain fitted t-shirts, vintage hoodies
Skinny jeans, corduroys, skirts, fitted jeans, etc.
Converse, Vans, Nike Dunks, Moccasins, Boat/Deck shoes, "Vintage" Adidas and Puma
Corduroy jackets, Members jackets, vintage leather, peacoats
Bracelets, necklaces, pins, headphones, interesting bags
Alright, now that we have the basics down I will delve deeper into indie fashion.
I would stay away from cardigans if you're a guy. Though they are
considered indie, they also make you look like a grandma. Girls will
say they look good on you, but what they are really implying is that
you remind them of granny back home. You can be indie without being
stripped of your sexuality, so guys just say not to cardigans. Cardigans are fine on girls, however.
Flannel is the epitome of indie in my humble (ya right lol) opinion. To truly be indie you need to stock up on whatever flannel/plaid you can find. It's great buttoned up, or unbuttoned over your favorite ironic indie shirt.
Fitted solid-color t-shirts and vintage t-shirts/hoodies are indie as well. Target has some great solid-tees, so you don't have to spend much. For the vintage, check out your local vintage retailers and thriftshops.
You don't have to wear skinny jeans to be indie if you're a guy, but if
you're a girl and they are flattering then skinny jeans are practically
a must. Guys can go for anything that is fitted well, just stay away
from baggy carpenter's and unflattering styles. Levi's 511 are good.
Corduroy is great, and will keep you warm in the cold winter months. Stores like H&M or Urban Outfitters typically have a good selection of cords. Again, thriftshops may have some gems as well.
Girls, for skirts anything that looks good on you is A OK!!
Okay, shoes are where it is at!! I'll start with Converse. Though
hipsters might complain that Converse has sold out since they are owned
by Nike, they are still very fashionable and look good on everyone!
Converse Allstars that is. Stay clear of that Converse Onestar bull
that Target tries to push on you, and stick to the classic Chuck
Taylors. Emos might have hijacked Converse, but your indie self can
pull them off.
Vans, quite frankly, are the espresso. Vans Authentics and Vans Off The Walls are both completely viables candidates for indie shoewear. You can get slipons in almost any colors, as well as plaid and checkered! Check out the Zapatos del Barco, those are some of my favorite.
Moccasins and boat shoes add a touch of class to your indie wardrobe. Moccasins can be purchased online, just Google them. Zappos has some nice ones in stock. As for boat shoes, Sperry Topsiders are wonderful. It's rumored that Moses, the indiest guy who ever lived, owned a pair. Aside from lumberjacking, sailing is one of the most manliest professions and boat shoes just scream "Hey I'm indie, I'm a man, and I'm proud!" That's not to say that girls can't where boat shoes, they look cute on y'all too!!
Lastly, both Puma and Adidas have "Vintage" lines with lots of colors. Green retro kicks are quite indie.
Basically, just wear something fairly noncommercial. Peacots, Member's
Only jackets, vintage leather jackets... it's all pretty self
explanatory. Plus, if you're feeling adventurous, you could even rock a
poncho - just like the man with no name (most bad indie who ever
Accessories can make or break your indie wardrobe, so listen carefully.
Girls, you're on your own as far as bracelets and necklaces go. I'm a
dude, I have no idea. Try Etsy.com for some handcrafted jewelry.
Messenger bags are preferable to backpacks. You can get them in all sorts of materials and styles, my favorite being the ones Timbuk2 produces. Decorate these bags with all manner of pins and schwag you accumulate from attending indie shows!
Headphones! Nothing screams "I love music!" more than a nice pair of hipster headphones. Try to avoid SkullCandy, as it has become a bit too mainstream. Lesser known electronics manufacturers like Denon or high-tech fancy ones like Bose are both fine, however. If you can find them, a stylish pair of vintage headphones will work wonders. They'd probably raise your indie cred over 9000.
Indie Fashion Don'ts
you do, don't shop at retailers like Abercrombie, American Eagle,
Hollister, or Aeropostale. These stores represent everything the indie
culture opposes. Even if American Eagle tries to lure you in with some
Foals tunes, you must resist!
most important part of being indie is becoming a fan of the music. If
you dislike indie music then stop reading, because I'm trying my
hardest not to turn you into an indie poser. While technically indie
music can be any independently produced music, I am going to focus more
on indie pop (twee) and indie rock.
Some bands to get you started are of Montreal, The Shins, Neutral Milk Hotel, MGMT, and Architecture in Helsinki.
Finding local and lesser known bands is a must. Luckily we have the internet! Make use of websites such as thesixtyone, the pretentious pitchforkmedia, StumbleUpon, and even Last.fm.
Offline, you have other options. Watch MTV U for some ideas (though most of the music is garbage like Eminem) and listen to college radio stations. If you live in any decent urban area you will probably have some indie radio stations as well.
Become a part of the local music scene! Even if it's not indie music, it's a start. If there is no scene to become a part of, then I'm sorry, but you need to get the hell out of that podunk town. Move to a college town or large urban city like New York. You can't live in a better indie locale.
you need to work on the indie attitude. First and foremost, never refer
to yourself as indie. Doing so will cost you major indie cred.
mention that you read an online guide on how to become indie either.
That's just lame to talk about.
The indie attitude is all about having a cool demeanor. Be random, be fun! BE YOURSELF, but cooler. If you are quiet and introverted, don't just be the shy kid in the corner. Be the mysterious badass, like Clint Eastwood! If you're extraverted and outgoing, then just talk to other people! If the conversation turns to music, then use this as an opportunity to drop names of indie bands to establish some indie cred.
Learning an instrument helps, especially if you're quiet. You can just bring your guitar places and strum a few chords. The chicks or studs will be all over you, I guarantee it. :-)
now you have some idea of what being indie is about. Just remember,
never refer to yourself as indie, let your new indie threads do the talking. Head to some indie shows and make a lot of indie friends! Always look indie in the process!
¡Vaya con Dios!