In today’s pop culture, topics which were once considered too taboo to be cool, such as comics, Doctor Who, Star Wars, Star Trek, and video games, are now rising in popularity and considered “cool” due to the mass amounts of outward exposure. For fans of these medias, it is easier than ever to have access to these cornerstones of our geekdom in our wardrobes.
The first option to consider is Hot Topic. They have moderately priced t-shirts and other fandom paraphernalia (such as bags, socks, jewelry, dresses, etc.) in a place where you can try them on, which is rather important when it comes to pants and dresses. The other benefit to Hot Topic is their “Hot Cash”; when you buy something, they give you a $15 off when you spend $30 coupon, which you can stack and use multiple at the same time for every increment of $30 you intend to spend. Their website is also really accessible, because it also lets you use the coupons, but often has crazy awesome sales going. For those who fall into larger sizes, online is often a safer bet because plus-sizes are available sometimes only online.
There are numerous other online ports for geeky and nerdy styles. WeLoveFine is a great website for all the pop culture geek merch you could want, from vinyl figures to underwear (yep, they have it). Hot Topic also buys desgins from WeLoveFine, which uses original artists’ works for the desgin options available.
Now, for these basic items, I’d suggest simplicity in an outfit. My good friend and a true Whovian has a great outfit centered around the Exploding Tardis print pencil skirt from Hot Topic pictured here:
She paired the skirt with navy low-top Converse sneakers, a sheer navy shirt with a navy tank underneath, and a Dalek necklace and earring set. Obviously, any Whovian would know what she was about on sight, but it still functions as a cute outfit that isn’t over-doing it to people who aren’t. For a more simple look, any sort of fandom print sweater/shirt/hoodie goes well with a pair of plain jeans and a fandom belt and bag or hat. Less is more. It draws attention to the important pieces of your outfit (the skirt or hoodie/shirt/sweater), without making you seem over the top or lost in merch.
For those of you who want a little more originality, I’d suggest looking at Etsy. For a bit of a bigger price tag, you can snag more original and unique, sometimes one-of-a-kind pieces. Love Black Widow? Try a belt featuring her signature hourglass buckle, which can easily be found on Etsy from plenty of sellers. A rather plain outfit can transform from drab to peachy keen with the addition of a necklace and earring set modeled after Princess Peach’s. Cosplay-like accessories can turn a rather plain, unassuming outfit into the perfect place to premire favourite accessories as main focuses. As far as main pieces are concerned, for back to school I suggest a backpack or bag. You’ll most likely use it every day, so every outfit has the chance to be geeky chic. Other good suggestions are sweaters, which plenty of Etsy sellers offer. Classrooms, break rooms, and dorm rooms can get chilly, so why not always keep your favourite character on your new favourite sweater nearby? Etsy also offers plenty of other options, such as ties and jewelry sets which are really important for those special occasions or days at work when you want to let your geek show somewhere other than your screensaver.
Options that are not as outwardly shown are cosmetics and toiletries. Hot Topic now offers a wide range of DC Pinup perfumes, and Disney offers plenty of diferent shades of princess and villain lip glosses and sticks. Bath bombs are also a fun way to experience the fun of the fandom, especially when they’re laced with glitter which sticks with you for awhile after you’ve relaxed in the warm water.
However, the number one move you can make is casual cosplay. My definition of this is when one dresses up in a way similar to that of any character without actually being in cosplay or standing out in a crowd. For example, pair the Black Widow belt buckle (on a belt, ovbiously) with some leather leggins, a black t-shirt, a slick leather jacket and some boots and you’re ready to kick butt Avengers style. This can be done in plenty of ways and really is up to the wearer. Find a dress that reminds you of Samus’ zero suit? Wear that sucker out with the coolest shoes you have and rock it Metriod style. Find a yellow sweater that makes you feel like Captain Kirk? With some black jeans and a smooth slicked over hairstyle, the Enterprise is yours. With some cool accessories, the outfits that you already have can become a characters. All it really takes is a little imagination and some desire and you can be perfectly casual cosplay and geek chic.