SEATTLE GOTH CLUBS: CLUB MERCURY AT MACHINEWERKS, NOC NOC. INDUSTRIAL EBM GOTHIC EVENTS, PARTIES & CONCERTS.
While in town for the D’espairsRay concert (report coming up!), Rose and I decided to check out Seattle’s Goth club scene. Oh boy. Club Mercury ended up being the single worst Gothic party we’d ever encountered… Read on to find out what happened.
Hair: Rose put her hair in Sailor Moon buns, wrapped in fishnets and topped with bows — adorable!
Makeup: She picked up some of the feathers that fell from my black boa and turned them into eyelashes.
Jacket: Sex Pot Revenge.
Fox purse: She made it herself, like the mouse headband. If you’re interested in commissioning taxidermy accessories from Rose, check out her website.
Black bonnet: Innocent World, from Osaka (see store photos)
White jacket: h.NAOTO, from Closet Child
Dress: Metamorphose temps de Fille, from Closet Child
Tights: Vivienne Westwood, from Marui Shinjuku
Rocking horse shoes: from Refuse to be Usual, an eBay store
Bead and lace wrist cuffs: a DIY project
I heard Club Noc Noc, located near Pike Place Market, plays excellent Goth / darkwave music. The interior was sufficiently devilish, with leather seats and a red glow. But the music… 1980s Madonna? And the crowd… zebra jumpsuits and prom dresses? Apparently, we’d mixed up the date and stumbled into 80s night. On Wednesdays (Requiem) and Sundays (Resurrection), the Gothic and industrial DJs take over. Next time, we’ll show up on the right day of the week.
We cabbed to Club Mercury at Machinewerks, a “private club” with Gothic/Industrial and electronic music DJs. (To enter, an existing member can sign you in, or you can contact them to request entry.) Since we didn’t know we were coming until the last minute, we figured we could speak to the promoter when we arrived. Ha. The door people were unbelievably condescending; they cut us off as we explained, and wouldn’t even look us in the eye. Forget it: we were out of there. No big loss; we didn’t even hear good music playing, and the clubgoers outside were dismally dressed. Four thumbs down and two gruesome faces for Seattle’s Club Mercury. Don’t go here. It was more hellish than Club Hell!
PS: We didn’t expect to get into a “private club” — we expected to be treated like human beings. It would have been fine if they heard our case and nicely told us no. That wasn’t what happened.
A quick press round-up… Fan To Pro, a blog about turning your J-pop/otaku interests into a career, asked me six questions about my work. Exclusively Gothic Lifestyle (EGL) magazine also interviewed me; you can read the article here and after the jump.
PS: got some INCREDIBLE news today, involving TV and travel and Tokyo… and it’s for a major company. I’ll tell you ASAP, as well as show you photos of my new haircut and dye!
What’s the worst clubbing experience you’ve ever had?
Japanese Word of the Day: Ganko na = Stubborn
Song of the Day: Due le Quartz – Replica
Not only is La Carmina one of the top blogger in the world of Japanese street fashion, but she has also turned her talents to TV hosting, writing books and cooking some of the cutest food you will ever see!
La Carmina’s blog has been featured in some major publications including The New Yorker, Washington Post and Time Out New York, and she also writes for CNNGo.com and Lip Service. Her TV appearances include ‘The Today Show’ and co-hosting an episode of ‘Bizarre Foods’ with Andrew Zimmern for Travel Channel. She recently co-hosted a Canal Plus documentary and CNN International segment in Tokyo, and will be the Asia host for educational travel TV series, ‘Project Explorer’.
You can find out more about and where to buy her three books; ‘CUTE YUMMY TIME: 70 recipes for the cutest food you’ll ever eat’ (Penguin USA), ‘CRAZY, WACKY THEME RESTAURANTS: Tokyo’ (Random House) and ‘THE COSMOS IN A CARROT: A Zen guide to eating well’ (Parallax Press) from her website.
We caught up with La Carmina to find out a little bit more about her love for lolita fashion.
How and when did you first become interested in Lolita fashion?
Lolita fashion gradually came into my consciousness during my childhood travels around Asia. I saw frilly Victorian doll dresses in Harajuku and was captivated by the aristocratic dream-world they represented. Later, I found out more about Gothic Lolita clothing, as well as other Japanese street fashions such as decora and gyaru.
Why do you think Japanese subcultures are so popular in the Western world?
I think the worldwide fascination with Jpop culture (especially anime and manga) has bubbled over to Japanese subcultures. Visual Kei and Harajuku Gothic fashion/cultures are visually striking and enigmatic to many people outside of Japan, which makes them keen to learn what they’re all about.
What inspired you to start blogging?
Around 2006, I saw personal style blogs emerge. I thought, “This might be a neat way for me to share my obsessions with Japanese Gothic fashion and subcultures.” I had designed websites in the past, so it was easy for me to get started – and from the first day (in September 2007), I was hooked. La Carmina blog (www.lacarmina.com/blog) has branched from fashion into cute cooking, travel videos, Jpop culture and rock music… I’ve never run out of inspiration, and still get excited to post and answer comments every day.
The internet is constantly changing and adapting, and trends come and go very quickly. Do you think blogging will manage to stand the test of time?
Blogging will evolve over the years, but I think there will always be some form of online publishing – whether it’s in the form of videos, photos or writing. The Internet is wonderful for giving any regular person a voice and making possibilities come to life.
What are your top tips for writing a successful blog?
Treat your blog as a business: post frequently, and put up the best quality content possible on a well-designed site. Be active in social networks and tuned in to SEO (search engine optimization) and monetization options. I highly recommend using WordPress on a self-hosted domain; the plugins and customizations are brilliant. Above all, blog about a niche subject that you love — your passion will come through, and readers will connect.
How did you make the move from blogging to TV presenting?
I have zero family connections to anyone in TV or media. Every TV hosting opportunity (NHK Japan, CNN International, Travel Channel, Canal Plus France) arose because a producer found my blog and sent me an email. The TV people looked at my writing work, press, bio, photos, videos etc, and that helped them decide if I was someone worth contacting. I absolutely love doing TV work: I get to be my flamboyant self and share the pop culture oddities I love. I hope I can keep doing more.
What inspired your three books?
My books are inspired by Japanese pop culture quirks. ‘Cute Yummy Time’ is a cookbook that shows you how to turn 70 favorite meals into adorable characters: think bunny muffins and panda bear meringues. ‘Crazy, Wacky Theme Restaurants: Tokyo’ is about Japan’s extreme theme cafes (maids, monkeys, cats, vampires). If you’re interested, you can find out more and order these books from my site.
What’s the best thing about Lolita fashion?
I am obsessed with Ancien Régime and Victorian fashion… the floor-sweeping Rococo gowns of Marie Antoinette, the mourning jewelry and veils of Queen Victoria. Lolita fashion is a love letter to elegant, flamboyant past eras. In a modern world where everyone wears jeans, putting on a corset, lace headdress and doll-like bell skirt will make you feel like a princess.
What do you have planned next?
I’ll keep blogging every day on La Carmina blog about Harajuku’s darkest and most decadent subcultures. I will be the Asia host for ‘Project Explorer’, an educational travel TV series shooting soon. I’m one of the main contributors for CNNGo.com, an Asia travel/lifestyle website. And there are more projects in the works… with luck, I’ll keep doing travel TV hosting in Japan and every dark corner of the globe.