August 31, 2010

Best of the Dark Side: 13 Awesome Goth Clothing Shops

It was really, really difficult only picking 13 fabulous goth clothing shops. I probably should have done 2 or 3 different posts on the topic. But I'm a bit eager to put "Best of the Dark Side" behind me, so I promise to revisit all the goth clothing sites I know about in the future and mention them again in some way.

1. Arsenic Fashions

A Salt Lake City, Utah-based shop selling things for ladies and gents. Corsets, dresses, gloves, armwarmers, shoes and stockings. The brands carried include Darque, Lip Service, Leg Avenue, and Shrine.

2. Ashes Gothic Clothing

This UK-based shop makes and sells gothic gowns, velvet and lace chokers, jackets, coats, hair accessories, bustiers, and more. I love the look of the clothing here.

3. Bats Meow

They sell alternative and goth fashion for alternative kids. They offer T-shirts and onesies, blankets, christening gowns, crocheted sweaters, dresses, and even bowling shirts for little ones.

4. Delicious Corsets

Besides the lovely aforementioned corsets, they sell men's jackets and pants, women's clothing, and some bridal wear. Not a goth site, but they have some nice things that would work well into your wardrobe if you can shell out the bucks to pay for them here.

5. Drac-In-A-Box

This UK purveyor of goth clothes has been around since the dawn of grime. Besides goth, they sell cyber and industrial styled clothes and accessories. They also carry makeup and jewelry.

6. Gloomth and the Cult of Melancholy

Original clothing and accessories. Skirts, tops, dresses, coats, men's and accessories. I like their corset skirts! Orders currently take 2 weeks to process, understandably.

7. Heavy Red

A large variety of gothic clothing. Capes, dresses, shirts, menswear, and even bathing suits! They also sell hosiery, jewelry, hats, gloves, and other accessories.

8. Inkubus Haberdashery

Clothing for men, women and children, plus accessories (hair color, cosmetics, chokers, belts and hosiery). Under the "Stuff" category they sell paper goods, sugar skull making supplies, and some off-topic cocktail accessories. A lot of the clothing here is vintage or thrift store prom dress looking at first glance, but when you take a closer look and see how morbid the fabric is, it makes more sense.

9. Spooky Boutique

Established long ago, and highly respected shop. Here's where you can find fishnet stockings, goth and punk boots, Tim Burton and Edward Gorey T-shirts, cool purses, and hair dye. Plus jewelry and fun accessories.

10. Kambriel

"Clothing and Accessories for Femme Fatales and Decadent Gentlemen." Extremely beautiful gowns, plus hats and veils, jackets and capes. The menswear section offers jackets, cassocks, capes, shirts and vests. The photography and webdesign here make browsing very enjoyable, almost dreamy. There's also a home decor section with pillows and coverlets.


Excellent store that's been around since 1996, back when they were The Cornerstone. So many cool things here I can't begin to list them, go check it out for yourself. Not just clothing and jewelry, but also Halloween. Mostly importantly (to me), they sell vegan combat boots.

12. The Twilight Parlour

Nothing to do with the "Twilight" craze! This is Azrael's Accomplice/Azac Designs. Absolutely gorgeous gowns here, plus beautiful corsets. There's also a section of stunning bridal gowns.

13. Rose Mortem

The clothing here is splendid. So many skirts and dresses I want for myself, like this Colchique dress. Items are custom made, so custom sizing is possible. There's also an ethereal bridal gown section that makes me want to get married again just to wear one!

--Carrie Carolin

Best of the Dark Side: 13 Fun Goth and Horror Toy Shops

1. Autopsy Babies

Really gory custom autopsy baby dolls for sale. There are also some cool T-shirts.

2. Little Apple Dolls

I love these! If I were going to start collecting goth dolls again, I think I would start here. So eerie! "Irae" is my favorite.

3. Panik's Toy Box

Lots of off-topic stuff sold here, but also Cinema of Fear figures, Alien vs. Predator, Movie Maniacs, and Nightmare Before Christmas.

4. Bleeding Edge Goths

12 inch fashion dolls, soft plush dolls, plus 7 inch action figures. They also sell BeGoths related books, T-shirts and accessories. I didn't used to like this line at all, I thought they were posers or exploiting the scene. But when I read more about the company that created these, and how carefully they researched everything, I feel more respect for them. Still, I prefer the original goth dolls, Living Dead Dolls for my own collection personally. But I have to admit I like the looks of Greta Vendetta.

Bleeding Edge Goths Group on Facebook


They sell fun toys based on Shaun of the Dead, Hellboy, Friday the 13th, Chucky, Terminator, and other horror movies. They also sell Living Dead dolls, zombie toys, Tonner dolls and NECA toys.

6. Dream of Doll

This Korean company makes beautifully ethereal collector dolls, many with elfin ears, most with unusually colored eyes and hair. I can't afford to collect them, so I just have to visit this website to drool from time to time.

7. Headless Historicals

"Because history is violent." These custom dolls are "reworked dolls that were inspired by people throughout history who died in rather horrible ways." Currently running a sale on "The Tudors" series.

8. Living Dead Dolls

For a while I was obsessed with collecting the minis. I thought I was going to make time in my life to craft little dollhouses and creepy miniatures for them. I've since set them aside, but I can't bear to sell or give away the cute little dollies.

Living Dead Dolls Fan Page, on Facebook

Living Dead Dolls, at Livejournal

Living Dead Dolls on MySpace

9. Monsters in Motion

A toys/collectibles shop selling sci-fi, fantasy and horror related products. They also sell some harder-to-find horror movie DVDs.

10. Sideshow Collectibles

Makers of fabulous busts, figures, toys and dolls. Their products are based on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, monsters, horror, Aliens and Predators, Alice in Wonderland, Maleficent, and comic books. Lots of fun things to see here and put on your wishlist for Satan. Er, I mean Santa.

11. Skelanimals

All sorts of branded and licensed items with creepily cute little critters. Am I correct in remembering that Target's Halloween line was based on them last year? The toys sold here are plush and vinyl.

12. TeddyScares

Malevolent, bloody little teddy bears. There's also a line of zombie toys called Tofu.

13. Uglyart

UglyShyla's famously cool fine art dolls. I've been watching this site for years - fabulous! There's also some jewelry and a couple interesting sculptures for sale.

--Carrie Carolin

Dark Side of the Net

Best of the Dark Side: 13 Eerie eBay Shops

I knew eBay has lost a lot of stores, with their fee changes and difficult new changes to rules for sellers. I closed my own Darklinks store down too. But I wasn't prepared for about 96% of my goth eBay store links to have died in the last 12 months. Sooo many goth stores have closed down entirely or just moved over to etsy.

Here are a few cool shops that remain:

1. Apocalypse Lounge

A mega-store selling Nightmare Before Christmas, Emily Strange, Ruby Gloom, Lip Service, Invader Zim, and lots of off-topic metal stuff.

2. The Black Cat Closet

They sell Alchemy Gothic jewelry, makeup, wigs, goth jewelry, goth home decor, pin-up fashion, Gothic home decor, and Halloween items.

3. Bone Diva's Closet

Surreal art paintings, monsters, fantasy, and other art pieces.

4. Crimson Moon Demon Babies

This shop sells OOAK altered zombie dolls.

5. Dark Creations

D.L. Marian's uber-creepy spooky art dolls.

6. Darkwear

Right now, mostly selling beautiful lace parasols and some T-shirts.

7. Dedgothgirl

Wow, this seller has over 14,000 feedback! Selling Lip Service, plus goth shirts, clothes, accessories, and hoodies.

8. Fatal Impact

They sell Halloween items, tons of Manic Panic, Demonia, collars and cuffs, Shrine clothing, jewelry, parasol, purses, and other cool items.

9. Gothic Revival

A UK store selling corsets, goth skirts, jackets, dresses, and other clothing. Also some Victorian style jewelry.

10. Strange Assortments

I really like the looks of the jewelry at this UK ebay shop. One of the celtic cross pendants is tempting me!

11. KittyCat Black

Truly adorable cat-themed red and black jewelry.

12. Redemption Clothing

Huge store with over 4000 items, including Lip Service, Darque, corsets, Halloween costumes, and legwear.

13. Silver Spider 2000

Lots of goth jewelry here, plus lacy black gloves, chokers, and gauntlets.

--Carrie Carolin

Dark Side of the Net

August 30, 2010

Best of the Dark Side: 13 Scintillating Goth Communities

At over 450 links, the Dark Communities page used to be my largest. I stopped listing any more Yahoo! groups when in general they became havens for spammers. Many moderators stopped moderating and cleaning their groups. This makes me sad, I loved this resource. It was great for sending out one-way mailing lists (in which people couldn't respond) like newsletters - I used to send out Dark Side of the Net news that way.

Now, I'm focusing mostly on Livejournals since Facebook groups exist and have tons of members but don't seem to be posted to or interacted with as much as one would think.

1. BatLady

This is actually a one-way mailing list/newsletter, not a community. But I love the concept so much, I have to add it in here. Forgive me? She riffs on the popular housekeeping-reminder site "FlyLady" but tweaks it with a gothic flavor. Daily reminders, tips, and homemaking advice.

2. FogeyGoff

An LJ community for "First Generation Goths, Ur-goths, Ex-Goths, Batcavers & Deathrockers." Surprised that this isn't just a bunch of fashion or event ads. There's actual news and interesting things posted here by eldergoths. I'd like to see a few more posts here.. but then I should get off my butt and share something here myself!

3. Goth Housing

What a brilliant idea! This is a community where you can post to find roommates of a goth persuasion. I'd definitely prefer to live with another goth if I ever had to rent out a room in my house. Then I could borrow her black lipstick if I misplaced mine! Most of the posts are London-based, but maybe the group will be used by a wider group of goths in the future.

4. Goth Trademarket

A very busy LJ community for posting goth items for sale. The ads here are really interesting, and I'd much rather see them here in a community asking for the ads to be posted, than spammed in other communities that would rather have actual content posted. This community is a great way to blow your spending money on beautiful things you probably don't need but really would enjoy owning!

5. Gothic Babe of the Week

Still going strong after all these many long years. Ladies post beautiful pictures of themselves, and the commenters are amazingly kind and supportive. Tatyana still keeps it nicely moderated so you don't have to see spam or off topic posts. Visit every day to see more gorgeous goth girls.

6. Gothic Decor

Wow, this Yahoo! group is still on topic, and someone cares enough to moderate the spam out of it. The group has been around since 2000, practically the "Dark Ages." There haven't been any posts in the last couple months, but I hope it will pick up. Goth home decor is an important topic, and something a lot of people get excited about.

7. Gothic Dollies

An LJ community for actual dolls (not girls who like to pretend they are dolls) made by goths or featuring goth and horror themes. Some posts are showcasing the dolls just for fun, others attempt to sell the dolls. Either way, this community is really interesting to browse through.

8. Memento Mori

An LJ community for all things death. Funerals, cemeteries, memento mori, mourning jewelry, near death experiences, and more.

9. Ocular Xs

This community is full of awesome art! It specializes in Big sad eyes; characters with eyes overtaking their heads; spooky paintings of eyes that follow you; creepy dolls with enormously wide eyes; and sinister little children with big glistening eyes.

10. Real Vampires

A Yahoo! group. The Real-Vampires Community Alliance. I really respect what their charter states, so I'm reproducing it here for you: "Whatever your reasons for joining, we welcome you but we expect you to be your real self. Leave your "vampire persona" at the door. We are not role players. We seek to combat mainstream society's prejudice and discrimination by dispelling the myths and misconceptions surrounding our community. While you may use an alias to protect your identity, claims of immortality, shapeshifting, or other fictional abilities are not welcome."

11. Deathly Decayed

A community for people who enjoy photographing cemeteries and tombstones.

12. Deathrock

A community for discussing deathrock, batcave, and gothic rock music. I appreciate that this community is moderated to remove for-sale posts, and they limit club events to 2 posts per month. This way you can see more news and album announcements and major events that are upcoming.

13. Spooky Style Guide

This community discusses dark and spooky decorating, designing, entertaining, and crafting year-round, not just at Halloween time.

--Carrie Carolin

Best of the Dark Side: 13 Dark Art and Spooky Book Shops

1. Arkham House

Publisher of books by J.G. Ballard, Ramsey Campbell, August Derleth, Clark Ashton Smith, and most famously, H.P. Lovecraft. You can buy books online here through their catalog.

2. Black Death Books

They sell horror, dark fantasy, and pulp fiction through their blog. They do take credit cards.

3. Chaosium

Publisher of books and games, with a heavy concentration on Cthulhu and HP Lovecraft-related.

4. Creepy Little Stories

Tiny books of bedtime stories you can buy for your kids. The newest book is "Tales of the Truly Grotesque."

5. The Enchanted Art of Jessica Galbraith

Jessica Galbraith's fabulous dark and goth fairy art. She sells original art, prints, books, collectible figurines, stationery and calendars. My favorite original painting here is "Moonlight Masquerade."

6. Alan M. Clark

A sci-fi and horror fan and illustrator's art gallery. I'm a fan of his work. Long ago, he did the original logo for the Cabinet of Dr. Casey horror site - it was so awesome. You can buy his original paintings, or just prints here.

My favorite original painting for sale here is the gloomy Forgotten.

7. Morbidly Adorable Creations

Misty Benson's cute fairy art, gothic lolita art, and Day of the Dead art. She sells prints, a charming Tarot deck, original paintings, and even perfume oils.

8. Morpheus Gallery

They sell contemporary fantastic art by artists including H.R. Giger, Zdzislaw Beksinski (my personal favorite from this group), Jacek Yerka, De Es Schwertberger, Wayne D. Barlowe, and Gerard Di-Maccio.

9. Drive-Thru Horror

A store selling downloadable electronic editions of books. They sell titles from Random House, White Wolf, Monolith Graphics, and other publishers.

10. The Overlook Connection

A horror press and bookstore. They sell Peter Straub limited editions, Stephen King, magazines, and books by other horror authors.

11. New Age Dolls

Jade Perez's creepy art dolls.

12. Naoto Hattori

Limited edition prints from this talented surrealist artist. Not everything here is "dark" but it's definitely surreal.

13. Subterranean Press

A publisher that sells books in the horror, suspense, and dark mystery genres.

--Carrie Carolin

Dark Side of the Net

Best of the Dark Side: 12 Fabulous Goth Accessory Shops


They sell Day of the Dead, death and cemetery related books, videos, goth T-shirts, novelty pens, pirate items, casket furniture, mugs, boxes, and more.

2. Madame Talbot's Victorian Lowbrow

Coolest. Shop. Ever! They sell memento mori, T-shirts, dolls, vintage items, original artwork, ephemera, circus-themed items, books, and more. Browse around here, you'll have so much fun!

3. Mordaunte's Coffin-Shaped Gems

Gems and jewelry with an unusual morbid shape. Awesome.

4. Pan's House of Horns

Devil horns, puck horns, wicked horns, satyr horns, wizard horns and other costume items.

5. Pushin Daisies

A mortuary novelty shop. They sell greeting cards, dead roses, candy, miniatures, books and CDs, gift bags and boxes, and Halloween supplies.

6. RavenEve Jewelry

This store got its start in 1999. Their jewelry is separated into categories including Dream Jewelry, Gothic Jewelry, Amulet Jewelry, Immortel Jewelry, and Ghost Jewelry.

7. Shadowsphere Designs

An Australian jewelry shop selling sterling silver jewelry. Not everything here is goth or dark, but much here is pretty enough you'll want to take the time to look closely.

8. Skulls Unlimited

I sort of hate to list "skulls" and "osteological specimens" in a category I describe as "gifts." But special people out there would actually appreciate getting some of these as a surprise. Besides the skulls and educational materials, there are some mugs, critter necklaces, T-shirts and hats.

9. Sugar Hiccup

I love these cute-little-evil-girl stickers! They also sell pins and buttons.

Sugar Hiccup, at Sticker Giant

10. Sunspot Designs

"Jewelry and gifts that celebrate the beauty of the shadows!" Besides jewelry, they sell ritual tools.

11. Twilight Alchemy Lab

I always feel the need, when blogging about websites with the word "Twilight" in their name, to point out that this has nothing to do with the current sparkle-crazed vampire fan trend. This is the sister site to Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab. These particular oils are inspired by the theory and practice of alchemy, the Hermetic Sciences, the art of rootwork and aromatherapy as it pertains to ritual, spirituality and low magick.

12. Veil of Visions

A UK-based shop selling collars and chokers, hats, hairclips and veils, gloves and armbands, masks and eyepatches, as well as jewelry. There are also some pieces of clothing here (coats, dresses, etc).

--Carrie Carolin

Dark Side of the Net