Insidious Clothing, a heavy metal fashion and costume company, launched their debut collection, “Black Metal Wonderland”, this week. The collection is available on pre-order till October 15th.
Katie Broad (KtB), the LA-based designer behind the collection, says the inspiration from the line comes from crossing the aesthetics and philosophies of black metal with the story of Alice in Wonderland. Six prominent characters from the popular children’s book have been given a Satanic makeover, so they appear both sinister and sexy, powerful and elegant.
“”I want to make clothes that set the metal scene apart from other subcultures. We don’t all just wear black skinny jeans and printed shirts. I mean, that’s a large part of our wardrobe sure, but there’s definitely more to it. Insidious Clothing is here to breathe new life and a little more Satan into metal fashion.”
I was able to talk to Katie a little more about her new collection and her interest in aesthetics and music.
Steff: Can you name some of the bands/albums that either directly inspired this collection?
KtB: These 6 albums had the strongest influence on the line:
Gallowbraid – Ashen Eidolon
Watain – Lawless Darkness
Xasthur – Portal of Sorrow
Nokturnal Mortem – The Voice of Steel
Burzum – Daudi Baldrs
Candlemass – Nightfall
Steff: There have been a few designers releasing collections inspired by black metal recently. Do you have an idea why the music inspires such a visual, aesthetic interpretation?
KtB: I think Black Metal has had a resurgence recently with the rise of the Witchhouse scene. Suddenly there are inverted crosses on everything and this haunting music that’s becoming popular, and it seemed to remind people of this even more powerful music that had been left behind in the underground.
As far as the aesthetic interpretation, I think the artists making Black Metal infuse the music with so much imagery and emotion that in listening to it, you can’t help but be whisked away to some wonderful place deep inside your psyche. The music is very magical, and for a creative person being spellbound by a great Black Metal album, it’s impossible not to create something in return.
Steff: What’s next for you after Black Metal Wonderland?
KtB: I’m casually designing two new lines right now, both of which will have at least one men’s piece. One is more wearable, inspired by vintage clothing
and spiders. The other is much more theatrical, and will have LED lights in every piece. I really like both of them so far, but I’ll have to wait
and see how this line goes before I decide which of the new ones to go forward with. Of course I hope I can just make both of them!
Steff: If you could make an outfit for any musician, who would it be?
KtB: This is a really hard question! I’m terribly indecisive … My first thought was Dimmu Borgir because they have been such an inspiration in my life and I would be completely star-struck. Then I thought Ohgr of Skinny Puppy would be fun to design some really weird costumes for. But I’d have to say my conclusion is King Diamond. He’s so visually extreme, yet boldly cheesy which makes him that much more awesome. I think our personal aesthetics would align beautifully.
Steff: Why the mashup with Alice in Wonderland? Do you feel the strange worlds of Lewis Carrol have something in common with black metal?
KtB: Sure, there are some common grounds between Alice in Wonderland and Black Metal. They are both whimsical, both are rather twisted escapes from reality, and they both are frequently set in wilderness. But there is also a great contrast between the two that leads to a perfect balance. Alice in Wonderland on its own is too innocent and light for my taste. I like adding a little bit of that playfulness into such a dark and somber aesthetic as Black Metal.
But for this line it was actually the other way around from what you might think – I really wanted to do something Alice in Wonderland themed, and originally it was going to be mashed up with a trailer trash look. Then I considered a post-apocalypse twist. I was trying to do something different from my norm, but none of those ever felt right. The designs didn’t come together and I wasn’t getting excited about it. Finally I thought, why not just do what I know and love? When I decided on that (to combine it with Black Metal), everything fell into place and I’m much happier with the outcome than I would have been with any of the original concepts.
All Insidious Clothing garments are hand-made in KtB’s studio in Los Angeles (no overseas production for this girl!), and will be available for retail and wholesale purchase at www.insidiousclothing.com. Pre-sale starts on September 21st, and orders will begin shipping on October 15th. Be sure to place your order during the pre-sale period to ensure you get it in time for Halloween! Custom orders are always welcome.