Tuesday, February 7, 2012

On Not Being a Hipster

Ok, so there have been a few conversations lately about Hipsterism and all things Hipster. Let me just put it out there that I am not a hipster, particularly not stylistically, and I'll explain to you why I think that. That does not mean that I have a problem with hipsters, their style, or even of the idea of me being one. I just don't think I am one.

Wikipedia can give you one definition, Urban Dictionary another. The Urban Dictionary one particularly makes me laugh because I think at one point or another it is describing everyone. It is like reading a horoscope, so all encompassing that you can't help but feel like you're being described.

Stereotypically, hipsters basically don't like things that everyone else like. They attempt to do and like things that no one else does, liking things not because they're "cool" but because they're new and interesting and unique. My favorite hipster joke is, "Why did the hipster burn his mouth on his food? Because he ate it before it was cool." Granted, I know this is a stereotype, but it is laughable how frequently this stereotype is astoundingly accurate when talking to a group of people that appear to meet the mentality. It almost feels like a trend of people trying to do things differently just to do things differently. Not because those things are actually better or more interesting, but simply because they're different.

While I'm really more interested in my own stylistic variations from Hipsterism, already I've reached upon a point which clearly indicates that I am not a hipster. I love things because I love them. I don't care how cool something is, how many other people love the same thing, or whether I'm ten years behind everyone else in discovering something. If something is interesting, inspiring, or beautiful to me, it just is. It doesn't matter how popular or unpopular it is. So, there's that.

On to fashion.

Some typical things that you'll find in the stereotypical hipster fashion can be found in some of the following images.

Sort of matching mis-matched accessories. Layers. Busy.

Teal, orange, plaid, v-necks.

Stripes, teal, long socks, skinny jeans, beard, large glasses.

These things.

Basically,  you've got a large group of people who are trying to dress "outside the norm" but have instead created a fashion trend that is a very common thing now. In a way, it is sad. Some real "hipsters" at the beginning started dressing outside the norm, to make their statement, and now that statement has instead turned into a fashion craze. One which typically follows the following cycle:

If you hadn't picked up on them yet, some common characteristics include beards, saggy beanies, fedoras, sweaters/sweater vests, skinny jeans, certain styles of shoes, skinny ties and bow ties, large glasses, v-necks, patterned and colored tights, flats, messy pattern and color combinations, complicated jewelry, layers, yellow-gold, orange, light pink, salmon, brown, mint green, teal, and pastels. Of course, you'll see these things everywhere, but an overdose of these is likely an indicator of a budding or deeply ingrained stylistic hipster. Again, there's nothing wrong with that. There's nothing wrong with any of this. It's just not my style. Or outlook.

This spoof on Where the Wild Things Are is also another stereotypical image of hipsters.

(Where The Dirty Hipsters Are (Wild Things Spoof)

As opposed to all of that, the style that I love is quite different. Not unique from the average, per say, just not hipster. I don't claim to be my own kind of hipster as opposed to the general hipsters. I don't think I'm leading any styles or doing anything just to do something different. Granted, I like doing different things, but that's because I like to try new things and experience new things. I'm fine if everyone and their dog also does the same thing, I just want to have the experience for myself.

While I also love skinny jeans, I prefer dark (almost black, but still blue) skinny jeans that fit well down to the knee and then are a bit looser. In many ways that sounds like a boot cut, but I've never liked boot cut jeans and skinny jeans have always been closer to my preference. I tried colored skinny jeans and it didn't go over very well for very long.

Really, in general I love dark, solid colors. Black is my favorite. Not in a Gothic way, but in a clean, classic way. I abhor pastels and white, both of which generally wash me out and make me look sickly. Instead I prefer rich colors such as dark reds, purples, greens, and blues. I generally avoid patterns, though I've got a few in my closet.

What I really don't do, which is typical to that hipster "look," is layer and accessorize to the point of absurdity. I love bold colors and beautiful cuts of cloth, but I don't like the busy look. I like a clean look with classic combinations. And my attempts to branch out of that or away from that have sometimes been interesting, but I've always defaulted back to the looks I love the most and ultimately feel most descriptive of who I am.

I have many friends who I'd consider to be stylistically and somewhat mentally "hipsters" though they themselves would likely not categorize themselves as such. I like their style for them. I'm familiar with it and familiar with it on them. But I still don't think I am one, and I'm perfectly happy not being one. :)

Today's bone of the day is the Stapes, which is one of the little bones in your ear. This one looks like a little stirrup. 

Day 34

-inconceivable: unthinkable
-incorrigible: unreformable
-incubus: nightmare
-ineffable: inexpressible
-ineluctable: inescapable


  1. I still am of the persuasion that hipster is simply a perception in others. I don't know if they actually really exist, and are just a constructed myth by fashion designers and advertisers to try and sell a certain style. But then maybe this is just me in denial about the fact that I am a hipster.

  2. Haha, I lean in the direction of your last statement. Although, I should have added a note that I think that hipsterism is more an American phenomena.