Those who are entrenched in the alternative scene know that it’s way more than just music—it’s a lifestyle.
While it may have started with alternative music, it’s turned into a complete aesthetic and persona, creating lifelong scene kids everywhere.
Aesthetics is a significant part. Our clothes influence the themes and artistry of the music we love, which is punk rock.
We decided to pay homage to 10 fashion brands that are inspired by alternative music. Hopefully, it helps you revamp your wardrobe and get some inspiration for your next signature look.
It would be a sin to make a list about punk and alternative fashion and not include Vivienne Westwood. She brought punk fashion to the mainstream, showed that tattoos were a beautiful accessory and created some of the classic trends that punks everywhere still wear today. She made clothes look the way punk sounded—deconstructed, raw and complicated.
London-based brand Jawbreaker is making clothes every trendy scene kid needs in their life, such as these killer harness leggings or a jacket that looks straight out of My Chemical Romance’s “Welcome To The Black Parade“ music video. Whether you’re going for a witchy ensemble or looking for some grunge staples, Jawbreaker has everything you need.
We had to include Vans on the list because it’s such an integral brand to the alt-rock scene. From its roots in the skating community to sponsoring Warped Tour, which shaped the punk music scene, Vans shoes are more than just sneakers. They symbolize all of the angsty punk kids whose parents will never understand.
NYC-based brand Whatever 21 is the alt Forever 21. This means it has clothes for every off-the-wall occasion, whether it be a punk show, a seance or just walking down the street in pants dripping with chains. The clothes are modern and definitely inspired by alt Instagram influencers, including pieces such as hoodies with tattoo-inspired designs to acid-washed lingerie.
UNIF makes clothes for cool kids, whether their aesthetic is punk, e-girl, cottagecore or whatever the latest TikTok trend is. The bran has always made clothes that are goth goals, from gravity-defining platform boots to baby-doll grunge dresses that look straight out of Courtney Love’s closet.
Speaking of goth goals, MORDHAUS makes clothes that can only be described as funeral couture for fashion buffs. There’s no shortage of corsets and punk dresses that look like something out of an emo fantasy, and it’s exactly the vibe we all need to be channeling nowadays.
Again, it would be a sin to make a list about fashion shaped by alt and punk culture without talking about Tripp pants. We know them, we love them and we’ll never get sick of them, and that’s just the damn truth. Aside from the iconic pants, Tripp makes a variety of clothes that look like they’re meant to be worn at a dark rave, and we absolutely love it.
Alexander McQueen is one of the major fashion houses that has always embraced the punk-rock aesthetic. Some of the brand’s most iconic pieces are Victorian fantasies or punk statements that have influenced the world of mainstream fashion. The designer isn’t afraid to have models walk down the runway in big teased hair with massive eyeliner and wearing looks inspired by horror films, political movements and more.
U.K.-based brand UNDERGROUND is all about encapsulating fashion, music, art and subculture into one, which translates to its clothing. The company makes original Creeper shoes that are to die for as well as graphic tees, plaid skirts and more.
Another punk fashion OG, Jean Paul Gaultier is responsible for incorporating elegant and edgy styles into his pieces, such as lace corsets and studded leather jackets with fringe. He isn’t afraid to take inspiration from punk without diluting it and using high-end fabrics to truly create works of art.