11 marca 2017

50 shades of black

In the beginning god created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and light was upon the face of the deep.
And god said, Let there be black colour: and there was black colour.
And god saw the black colour, that it was good: and god divided the black colour from the light.
And god formed the goths of the ashes of punks and Poe, and breathed into their nostrils the breath of life, so they could wear black.
And god put a thrift store in the north in Eden; and there he put all black clothes that are pleasant to the sight, and in one shade of black; the basement also with different shades of black.
And god took the goths, and put them into the thrift store of Eden to dress there. And god commanded the goths, saying,
Of every hanger of this shop thou mayest freely take: But the basement with different shades of black, thou shalt not go there: for in the day that thou goest there thou shalt surely suffer.
Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field. And he said unto the goths,
Ye shall not surely suffer: For god doth know that in the day ye go to the basement, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall have more options to create outfits.
And when the goths saw that the clothes in the basement were good to wear, and that their lace was pleasant to the eyes, and that they make perfect outfits, they took the shirts and skirts from the hangers, and did try them on. And their eyes were opened, and they knew the shirt was brown black, and the skirt was blue black.

And so since that time goths suffer from clothes in different shades of black and worship satan, for he was the one to let them experience this suffering, and suffering is So Goff. 
victorian mourning edwardian gothic capelet wiktoriańska
pelerynka żałobna edwardiańska gotycka narzutka
Na początku bóg stworzył niebo i ziemię. Ziemia zaś była bezładem i pustkowiem: światłość była nad powierzchnią bezmiaru wód.
Wtedy bóg rzekł: «Niechaj się stanie czarny kolor!» I stał się czarny kolor.
Bóg widząc, że czerń jest dobra, oddzielił ją od światłości.
Wtedy to bóg ulepił gotów z prochów punków i Poego i tchnął w ich nozdrza tchnienie życia, aby mogli nosić czerń.
A postawiwszy lumpeks w Edenie na północy, bóg umieścił tam wszelkie czarne ubrania miłe z wyglądu i w jednym odcieniu będące oraz piwnicę z różnymi odcieniami czerni.
Bóg wziął zatem gotów i umieścił ich w lumpeksie Eden, aby czerpali z niego. A przy tym bóg dał gotom taki rozkaz: «Z wszelkich wieszaków tego sklepu możecie brać według upodobania; ale do piwnicy z rożnymi odcieniami czerni nie wolno wam wchodzić, bo niechybnie cierpieć będziecie».
A wąż był bardziej przebiegły niż wszystkie zwierzęta lądowe. On to rzekł do gotów: «Na pewno nie będziecie cierpieć! Ale wie bóg, że gdy pójdziecie do piwnicy, otworzą się wam oczy i będziecie mieli więcej możliwości zestawiania ubrań.».
Wtedy goci spostrzegli, że w piwnicy są ubrania zdatne do noszenia, że ich koronka jest rozkoszą dla oczu i że tworzą idealnie zgrane zestawy. Wzięli zatem z wieszaków koszule i spódnice i założyli. A wtedy otworzyły się im oczy i poznali, że koszula ma odcień brązowej czerni, a spódnica niebieskiej czerni.

Od tej pory goci cierpią z powodu ubrań w różnych odcieniach czerni i czczą szatana, bo to on umożliwił im doświadczać tego cierpienia, a cierpienie jest Bardzo Gothyckie.




I'm no exception: it irritates me too, when my blacks don't match. But I've seen a lot of clothes sewn from repurposed fabrics, and they not even once happened to annoy me with their whole wheel of various shades. So I came to the conclusion it's about proportions - big chunks of fabric, like blouses and skirts, look bad next to each other when their shades clash. A tiny scraps give off a feeling of chaos, but this chaos seems planned, because variety of shades emphasizes facture of the garments, which otherwise would be lost in a mass of uniform black.
So this experimental pseudo-victorian capelet came to be. I sewn it on a base of a man's shirt, which I've cut into a triangular shape and put the collar up to make a standing collar. I've mixed the blacks on purpose, and you can easily see the details - and there are a lot of them. As for looking chaotic and loose threads... well, this is something I'd like people to associate with my style.

Nie jestem wyjątkiem: mnie też irytuje, gdy moje czernie do siebie nie pasują. Widziałam jednak całe mnóstwo ubrań szytych ze skrawków innych ubrań, i nie zdarzyło się, aby mnie drażniły swoją całą gamą różnych odcieni. Doszłam więc do wniosku, że to kwestia proporcji - duże płachty materiału, jakimi są bluzki i spódnice, wyglądają źle koło siebie, gdy mają inne odcienie. Drobne skrawki z kolei wprowadzają poczucie chaosu, ale ten chaos sprawia wrażenie zaplanowanego, gdyż mnogość odcieni uwypukla fakturę, która zginęłyby w masie jednolitej czerni.
Stąd ta eksperymentalna pseudo-wiktoriańska narzutka. Była szyta na bazie męskiej koszuli, którą przycięłam w trójkątny kształt, a jej kołnierzyk postawiłam, żeby zrobić stójkę. Celowo przemieszałam w niej różne czernie, i widać każdy detal, których jest tu sporo. A że całość wygląda chaotycznie, a z każdego skrawka sterczą nitki... cóż, to coś, z czym chciałabym aby mój styl był kojarzony.

25 lutego 2017

Mirrors do not lie - reality lies

I like jewellery. I like making jewellery. I like broken things. I like making jewellery out of broken things. I also like mirrors. I did not know if I liked making jewellery out of them, but I wanted to give it a try.
Now I know I don't like it. At least not from broken ones. Glass shards are probably still in some places where I didn't find them, I managed to glue two mirrors to the floor, because the glue poured through cracks (fortunately I knew the trick with nail polish remover being able to dissolve Super Glue BEFORE I got crafty) and probably signed up for a good 98 years of bad luck >D

Lubię biżuterię. Lubię robić biżuterię. Lubię popsute rzeczy. Lubię robić biżuterię z popsutych rzeczy. Lubię też zwierciadełka. Tego, czy lubię robić z nich biżuterię, nie wiedziałam, ale koniecznie chciałam spróbować.
Teraz już wiem, że nie lubię. A przynajmniej nie z zepsutych. Odłamki szkła zapewne nadal są w miejscach, w których ich nie znalazłam, zdołałam przykleić dwa lusterka do podłogi, gdyż klej przeleciał przez spękania (jak dobrze, że znałam trik ze zmywaczem do paznokci rozpuszczającym Super Glue ZANIM się za to zabrałam) i pewnie stanęłam w kolejce po solidne 98 lat pecha >D



It was an old idea, heavily inspired by this necklace by Ashley Gilreath. I don't treasure my ancestors and I wouldn't want to commemorate them, but mirrors - broken ones - and golden hue of the whole thing have their own symbolic value for me. I guess. I've been looking for illegal mirrors for several years, and I've found them at last! I've unstitched them from an Indian choli blouse, of the type belonging to a Banjara tribe (a bit heretic move from me, I know, but a) it didn't fit me, b) it had a lot of details I saw a different use for. Not to mention the colours.). Thanks to this the mirrors were already a bit worn out, which was exactly what I wanted, but they were also very cheaply made, what I discovered while breaking them, as the glass was easily separating from the silver layer... (and that's the story of how I glued it to the floor). The frames were the only thing I had to buy purposely for this project, all the rest was repurposed from old stuff.

To dawny pomysł, inspirowany mocno tą kolią od Ashley Gilreath. Przodków swoich nie cenię i nie chciałabym ich upamiętniać, ale lusterka, do tego popękane, oraz złota kolorystyka całości, mają w moich oczach swój wymiar symboliczny. Jakiś. Na znalezienie nielegalnych zwierciadełek czaiłam się kilka lat, ale w końcu się udało! Odprułam je w końcu od indyjskiej bluzeczki choli, której wzornictwo sugerowało, że pochodzi z plemienia Bandżara (trochę zbrodnia, wiem, ale a) nie pasowała na mnie, b) miała w sobie sporo elementów, które mogłam wykorzystać w inny sposób. Nie wspominając o kolorach.). Dzięki temu były już trochę znoszone, co bardzo mi odpowiadało, ale były też kiepsko wykonane, co wyszło na jaw przy tłuczeniu ich, gdyż szkło z lubością oddzielało się od srebrnej warstwy... (i tak właśnie przykleiłam je do podłogi). Ramki na lusterka były jedyną rzeczą, którą musiałam specjalnie kupić do tego projektu, cała reszta była zdobyczna i odzyskana ze staroci.

18 lutego 2017

Polish 80s music: Where Post-Punk Was Mainstream

I find it a bit funny that it is me who shares Polish music, because I used to hate it for years. That's because either the lyrics irritated me (even the intelligent ones - I dislike poetry), or the fact our biggest hits were all rock music, and I've started to enjoy rock really late. Paradoxically, it was oldschool goth which helped me to see value of our old music, as it gave me love to this distinctive bass line and guitar riffs. Later two gothy Polish albums taught me three things: that our widely known and loved rock classics are all perfect post-punk, that with such ice-cold melodies the lyrics can appeal to me - and that we have nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to 80s music. I've heard once Eastern European rock differs a lot from Western - care to give it a try?

Bawi mnie trochę to, że akurat ja udostępniam naszą muzykę, ponieważ przez długie lata nienawidziłam polskiej twórczości. Bo albo teksty mnie drażniły (nawet te inteligentne - nie lubię poezji), albo rockowa stylistyka klasyki, a mi rock zaczął się podobać niebywale późno. Paradoksalnie w odkryciu wartości naszej starej muzyki pomogło mi wsiąkniecie w oldschoolowy gotyk, bo z niego wyciągnęłam zamiłowanie do tego charakterystycznego brzmienia basu i gitary. Potem dwie okołogotyckie polskie płyty uświadomiły mi trzy rzeczy: że nasza rockowa klasyka to perfekcyjny post-punk, że w otoczce tak lodowatych melodii teksty potrafią mi się podobać - i że pod względem utworów z lat 80 nie mamy się czego wstydzić.
Nie będzie w tych wpisach dużo tekstu, a przynajmniej nie po polsku, bo nie widzę sensu w pisaniu o czymś, co wszyscy doskonale znacie, rozumiecie, a być może też lubicie. Przy tworzeniu tej kompilacji podpierałam się trochę się Trójkowym Polskim Topem Wszech Czasów, ale dobierałam wszystko pod kątem interesujących melodii.


Unfortunately, it's impossible to speak about Polish music of the 80s without political background, so allow me to write a little about it. Modern history is way outside my interests, though, so it will be quick.
After the World War II Poland became a part of the Eastern Bloc, which meant all ties to the world outside the Iron Curtain were cut. Communism was a fine mess on its own, but it seems like during the 80s everything was especially strained and waiting to erupt. An introduction of a martial law and military dictatorship with curfew hours for 1,5 year. An increasing number of strikes and their brutal pacification. Food rationing and economical crisis. A first rock festival, where punk rock have emerged, which the government tried to control at all costs, but couldn't.
Because of all of this a bigger part of Polish rock music of this decade is very involved politically. The government, however, had a means to halt it: the censorship of information and art before anything was published. Those, who wouldn't conform, couldn't publish their albums and played their anti-establishment songs only on gigs. Other artists wrote highly metaphorised lyrics. But, basically, yes - if it's not about love, then it's about politics. Sometimes it's both about love and politics in the same words. And everything is post-punk. And everyone knows these songs. They often can be heard on the radio to this day. I've done this compilation with a slight help of Polish Best Of All Times playlist by our most worthwhile radio station, but my main criterion was an interesting melody.



Republika - Biała flaga (White flag)

Republika is our legendary band. The song above is their best known, a true cult classic from the top three of the aforementioned playlist. If you were to listen to only one song from this entry or from the whole series I've planned - please let it be this one. It has a sick piano solo instead of guitar one and I've always loved the singer's clear articulation of nasal vowels - nobody in Poland speaks like this, it's linguistic hypercorrection, but I find it lovely as it emphasizes the weird sounds our language has.
Lyrics: It's about losing friends from the days of youth, friends who shared rebellious views with the singer - and then seeing them once again after many years, only to discover they 'with white flags' have surrendered to the system. But it's very metaphorical. The singer was in opinion of many (including me) a best lyricist we ever had. Polish music lost a lot with his untimely death...




Maanam - Boskie Buenos (Divine Buenos)

It is said a first performance of this song on festival stage started the rock revolution in Poland. Big deal, you know? Maanam was a debuting band back then and quickly became a superstar with lots of well known hits. I love the singer's killer Siouxsie-like voice, it's definitely one of my favourite local bands, although I prefer their later, less punky and more atmospheric, style (which I'll share during the series, worry not).
Lyrics: Mainly silly, it's a fictional interview given by a pretentious celebrity with equally pretentious Latin-sounding nickname to a nosy and narrow-minded journalist. Singing about champagne and travelling all over Europe and to Buenos Aires in 80s Poland, oh my.



Kult - Polska (Poland)

It takes a bit of audacity to call your band 'Cult' and then write a song which becomes a cult classic and ends up in the top three. Remember what I wrote at the beginning about the censorship banning songs, so they could be played only on gigs? Well, say hello to Kult. No metaphors, just merciless satire, both in 80s and later in the 90s, where the lyrics became especially caustic and vulgar. Because of this I used to be prejudiced towards this band, but this song made me reconsider. Just listen to this dark bassline and insane weeping guitar riff (and a saxophone solo, if you're into it) - and try to tell me Polish post-punk can't compete with Western, I dare you.
Lyrics: I LOVE THEM. They deal with Polish mentality of hypocrisy and mediocrity, and how it's tied to Poland being a nasty place both when it comes to people and the way cities look. 'Have you ever been at our train station at night? It's so dirty and ugly your eyeballs explode.' Funny - I've heard this song for the first time sometime after 2000 and I didn't know it was old. The lyrics were painfully actual, despite the song being at least 13 years old. 17 years later and the only difference is that eyeballs don't explode anymore from looking at the train stations...



Lady Pank - Mniej niż zero (Less than zero)

Like the band's name could suggest - it sounds a bit punkish. Still a great hit, though I was surprised to find it on a way lower position on the playlist than the song below, the more you know, and one of the most popular bands of the 80s. I don't know what sorcery prevented this song from being censored to hell and back, because it's obvious what it's about and many other innocent songs fell victim to bureaucratic paranoia. Also - hypercorrectness and clear articulation, my!
Lyrics: It doesn't matter if you're educated, have the means and will to do something, because there are some who will weigh your value and find you worth less than nothing. And now I ask - is it about the government worth nothing for the people, or the people for the government? Either way, I have no idea how it escaped the censorship, but was a good decision to make.



Aya RL - Skóra (Leather jacket)

One hit wonder, but an important one, considered by many to be a hymn of that generation's youth. I myself dislike it, because the singer's feeble boy voice irritates the hell out of me (while doing research for this entry I've discovered who this singer is and it turned out I know him from a different band from the 90s, where he had a definitely aggressive voice >D). Even the band itself disliked this song. It has nice synthesizers and guitar, though.
Lyrics: Intolerance towards subculture youth. 'Look, baby, 'tis the civilized world' - says a boy in a leather jacket to his girlfriend as passers-by look at them with hate, elbow them and finally spit the girl in her face. The boy snaps and breaks the nose of the attacker - and suddenly it's all his fault, he's the aggresive delinquent, because he dared to look differently. And now the singer is a populist right-wing politician. Talk about changing views.