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Category Archives: Sub-culture

Fashion Trending in an Alternative Direction!

Since the beginning, fashion trends have come and gone. With such a wide array of clothing designs to choose from today, we can take pieces from each era creating different styles by combining old favorites with new, putting a new spin on fashion trends from days gone by, and bringing them up to date. For awhile, we can call it our own, but, like everything that is genuinely awesome, it will be copied and eventually mass-produced. Then it’s on to the next best trend. The fashion industry is fast-paced and fabulous any way you look at it, and I like to look at it from an alternative fashion forward perspective!

80s girls fashion style revived

80’s style revived. Photography by: Jeremy & Claire Weiss Photography.

As a young Punk Rocker, enthralled in fashion, I was combing every thrift shop in town for pre-owned items that I could nip, tuck, and morph into whatever I wanted. I, personally, didn’t pay attention to clothing labels, because it wasn’t about what I spent on my clothing, but what I looked like inside them. I didn’t have enough money to keep up with who made what anyway, but I knew I loved fashion! Now I own a unique Vintage Rockabilly Pin up & Punk Second-Hand store called Retro Kitten Apparel full of all things alternative and my love of fashion, thrifting, and affordability has found its way into my everyday life.

Punk Rock People

Punk Rockers hanging out. Photo by legley.

We’ve all seen it. The revival of the 60’s on the cover of every fashion rag, because a reputable clothing designer decided his Spring line’s theme was “Flower Power”. The next thing you know women everywhere are sporting brown suede fringed vests and moccasins complimenting loose-fitting bohemian blouses, an old faded pair of jean shorts, accessorized by a brown leather belt, and maybe a pretty hand-made flower headband. And there’s my favorite, Alternative fashion. With endless styles, genres, and sub-genres one can come up with some of the coolest fusions combining one with another. Just adding a few accessories and, before you know it, you’re outfit is headed in an entirely different direction!

60's Flower Power

60s revival woman in fringe vest. I do not own the rights to this photo.

Rock-N-Roll, of course, is the origin of a myriad of trends, cultures, and sub-cultures. We now have the luxury of what it really means to be hip. The Beatniks gave new meaning to the color black, art pop culture, coffee shops, and snapping. Mods brought the 50’s back on scooters. Skinheads gave the working class citizen something else to wear. Punks, well Punks just smashed stuff, but thousands of youths jumped in head first, and “Do It Yourself”! became cool once again. Kid’s like me shunned grandma’s dress patterns and went straight for a large sewing needle, some dental floss,  and a favorite music band’s clothing patch nipping and tucking virtually destroying the original design of what could be scavenged from the local thrift until it was wearable again. Goths glamourized darkness and mortality with theatrical black and white movie style. Pin up girls in their form-fitted sweater tops and high-waist shorts gave the girl next door a sexier image, and soon America was staring at Bettie Page in her darling underpants. Men in the military were absolutely thrilled! Then along came the combinations of these like Rockabilly, Psychobilly, and Steampunk. I am in absolute fashion heaven!

Bettie Page America's Pin up Girl

Bettie Page America’s Pin up Girl

Rockabilly Fashion Retro Kitten Apparel

Rockabilly Fashion Meghan Petty Copyright Retro Kitten Apparel.

Here we are in 2015 with every fashion trend combination imaginable. We no longer constrict ourselves! Today it’s okay to be who you are even if that’s many different fashion styles combined into one beautiful you! Tattoos aren’t even taboo and piercing your body has become an art form all in itself! Check out some of these great products from Urban Body Jewelry.

Looking for a few great stores to shop at? Here is a list of shops for some of the many genres of Alternative clothing and accessories:

Retro Kitten Apparel Everything Alternative from Pin-up, Rockabilly, Punk, and Vintage Clothing and Accessories

Lindy Bop for your Pin up Girl Dresses

Too Fast Apparel Punk Clothes and Accessories

Infectious Threads Gothic Clothes and Accessories

Feel free to leave me a comment if you have a store and would like to be added to the list! RKA is huge supporter of all things alternative and we would love to exchange links with you!


Is Punk Dead…Again?

The infamous debate: Is Punk Dead? Vote below, and tell us what you believe!

I truly believe that Punk cannot die. It’s not any one certain band, a haircut you get, clothes that you wear, or a title – people and their titles… It’s a right of passage, a rebellion for some, a calling for others, a family for outcasts for even more.

Minor Threat show at the Fulton House in 1983.

Minor Threat show at the Fulton House in 1983.

Born in 1974, I was your average 80’s kid. I first engaged in the alternative scene in 1986 at the seemingly typical age of 12. Bands like The Cure playing sorrowful melodies, and Depeche Mode with entrancing dance beats, were taking over the airwaves. The second wave of Punk Rock was pouring into everybody’s living room as New Wave dominated the Top 40 radio chart. I couldn’t ignore the change happening inside of me.

Like many x-gen kids, my parents divorced, adults seemed clueless, and I was headed nowhere fast – another product of an ignorant society. I succumbed to the comforting caress of the haunting undertones of Echo and the Bunnymen, The Smiths, and New Order. Bands like these made misery beautiful, acceptable, inspiring me to leave the life I knew behind, just another broken home, to find another family amongst the rest of the kids on the street. I traded my bright fluorescent polka dots and paisley printed preppy clothes for black Goth band tees and skinny jeans, before Goth had a “name” and when skinny jeans were just jeans pegged super tight with safety pins.

I fled the constraints of mainstream to feel again, or stop feeling at all. I wanted, needed to escape the hollowness I felt. I spent my days with my fast-forming band of misfits begging for change to buy the $1.07 heaping plates of fried rice at the food court in the mall – and that would feed thee of us – then off to talk some “old” guy into buying us a bottle of Thunderbird before we headed to the park. My nights ran together like acid trails swaying to the sound of the beat of Bizarre Love Triangle in the dance clubs, before the coined term club kid, and partying until I crashed hopefully ending up on a friend’s couch and not a warehouse or one of those cement tubes in some kindergarten school playground. But somehow that was better than the emptiness screaming silently in the halls of the house with a broken heart that I used to call my home.

Punks Not Dead - A Documentary (2007)

Punks Not Dead – A Documentary (2007)

After awhile I found I’d hardened inside. I was done wallowing in despair, or rather running in circles around the stench of a rotting family, holding my breath. I’d outgrown the whining of Morrissey or Robert Smith chiming in my ear about however far I go I will always love you bullshit, and the fast, unrefined power of Punk Rock music lit that a fire inside me. Once again, I was drawn like a moth to the flame, but this was more like a Molotov Cocktail had been thrown at me. Bands like The Exploited, GBH, and Minor Threat helped me shed another layer of skin unleashing what darkness consumed me. No more tears – I was hardcore! I was a Punk.

I was young, I was free, and I was me. I found an identity during my metamorphoses and I loved it. Punk was funny, raw, unrefined – Anarchy. I added color to my wardrobe, and expression to my step. Fishnets, docs, and mini skirts. Do it yourself (DIY) was the only way, not a tutorial on some website – what the hell was a website anyway? I didn’t live in New York, and my parents weren’t rich. We went to town with scissors and sewing needles, safety pins and studs. I was lucky enough to get a pair of green Doc Martens passed to me by a friend, my dad bought me a leather jacket from an Army Surplus store, and my mom got me some creepers for Christmas.

The Ramones Live

The Ramones Live

We were a force to be reckoned. Now we spent your spare change on Coors Party Balls, and Punk shows. I saw Capital Punishment, Dr. Know, Aggression from inside the mosh pit. Life was all about sex, beer, and Punk Rock! Someone always knew someone with a car who was ready for a road trip, and I got to see one of the last gigs the Ramones played, all of them, in Santa Cruz, Ca. Life as a young Punk on the streets was definitely an experience. We didn’t care whether we were accepted, and there was no shortage of ridicule or wicked stares, but nothing was going to hold us down! No repression, this was our rebellion against everyone and everything. Conforming was not even a concept.

Miss Maryn and Sean Sean (2005)

Young Punks – Miss Maryn and Sean Sean (2005)

Now, many years later, I am still here and still part of what seems to be the tail end of maybe the 4th or 5th arising of the Punk Rock movement since it originated in the 70’s. Punk dies down, goes “underground”, and flares back up onto main street (not mainstream) with every new generation, and with every new pack there is the infamous debate: Punk Is Dead / Punk’s Not Dead. I believe the latter. What do you believe?





Retro Kitten Apparel, an online Punk & Pinup Second Hand Store for all your alternative needs!

Retro Kitten Apparel An Online Rockabilly Pin-up & Punk Thrift Shop

Retro Kitten Apparel An Online Rockabilly Pin-up & Punk Thrift Shop

Retro Kitten Apparel has been serving you since 2008, specializing in quality Vintage, Rockabilly, Pinup, and Punk second-hand clothing, shoes and accessories for every one in every size from every era! Our goal is to dress you in designer fashions at a fraction of the retail cost. Retro Kitten Apparel’s owner, Lindsay Dominguez, is dedicated to bringing you to the style forefront on a budget!

Retro Kitten Apparel is the first online alternative thrift shop, and voted the #1 thrift shop of 2014. We carry very unique fashion styles for sub-culture lifestyle enthusiasts, adding “new”, used merchandise to our web store daily! Come on in and grab the only one left everyday! You can be certain that you will be the only one wearing your outfit today! If you are interested in Jewelry Plugs & Ear Tapers At Low Prices Online | this is a great place to go!

Miss Sarah Valentino modeling Retro Kitten Apparel

Miss Sarah Valentino modeling Retro Kitten Apparel’s Vintage Pinup fashion.

We love what we do and our customers benefit! Lindsay’s love of thrifting began in Junior High School as she developed her own unique style in the (r)evolution of Punk Rock. In 1986, unable to walk into the local mall to purchase fashion to match her passion, she found herself in the local thrift shops instead mixing and matching pieces from this section and that, crafting clothing to meet her pleasure. The Do It Yourselfer’s were emerging and she was first in line.

Inevitably, Retro Kitten emerged in the information era well aware of the importance of recycling. Reducing waste, reusing whatever we can, and doing our part in the restoration of our planet. With her love of fashion, DIY, and the planet we live on Lindsay is a proud supporter of humankind!

Our customer’s are extremely important co-habitants in a wonderful new age, and we would like nothing more than to hear from you! Your feedback is 100% important. Not only will it help us help you get what you want out of our thrift boutique, but it’s fun too! Join in our discussions; check out our blog often for the latest news at Retro Kitten and for interesting topics; and let us know what you think! We want to hear from every single one of you, and we know there’s a topic we’ve started that will interest you! If not, let us know and we will start one! We value all interaction with our customers. Your comments, suggestions, ideas, and input help us, and all of you too, so feel free to join us here or in one of our many online communities!

Miss Sarah Valentino modeling Retro Kitten Apparel's Rockabilly fashion clothing!

Miss Sarah Valentino modeling Retro Kitten Apparel’s Rockabilly fashion clothing!

Do you have a question to be answered before you order? Need to talk about an order issue? Call our store @ 559-326-0130. Need some fashion advice, or want to become an affiliate? Call Lindsay directly @ 805-904-3640. We are always happy to help with whatever you need. We also have a little box you can check during checkout for every order you place enabling us to send you an email so that you can send us feedback and give us a rating after you’ve received your order.

Check Retro Kitten Apparel out all over the web. Let us help you get started with the just a few links to some really cool stuff, or read about our store in our more helpful sections, and friend us in some of our favorite platforms…


Mailing List & Newsletter

Return Policy


Gift Certificates

Customer Testimonials

Street Team

Ordering Information

Specials & Discounts


Size & Conversion Charts

© 2014 Retro Kitten Apparel.


There are many people leading alternative lifestyles, and many considerations to be made about what is an alternative lifestyle. In my opinion, an alternative lifestyle is a few alterations to the society you live in and what might be considered normal, or a mainstream point of view. An alternative lifestyle might be one’s cultural upbringing, or choice of traditions practiced and celebrations; nutritional choices, and the food you eat, or choose not to eat; sexual orientation and with whom you share your love; or appearance, the clothing you wear, or the way you decorate your body possibly with tattoos, or piercings (in many other areas of the body than the ear lobe). For some it is personal, freedom of choice, and for others it is something they feel they were born into, a calling in one form or another.

sondra fire dancing spinning 8-16-14 Oceano beach

By the way, the term lifestyle was coined by the media mixing life and art together, thus life-style. I find that pretty cool. A fairly common alteration to one’s style of life is by dress. It is a common way for people to express themselves, through the type of clothing they wear, and most of us wear clothes on a daily basis (not you nudists though). Therefore, it is a pretty easy way to represent your alternative lifestyle, and it can be pretty fun expressing freedom of choice through your own personal style of dress. It isn’t hard to point out some of the alternative people we share our cities with, as their lifestyle choices, represented by the clothing they adorn, has not been adopted by society’s mainstream, or what is considered “normal”.

The earliest influx of the alternative life-style I’ve read was during the roaring 20’s with the flapper “movement”. As a symbol of freedom from oppression women were cutting their skirts short and their hair shorter; leading lives aloof of the heavy restrictions preceding. The “old days” were gone! Women were driving, cussing, having sex before marriage, and, oh yes, dancing. Women everywhere were jumping in with both feet, this was modern America.


Now, while we still have society’s standardized “norm”, there are many people leading alternative lifestyles. Sub-culture is abundant in America, and I am proud to be a part of the alternative life-stylists.

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I have begun to compile a list of terms attached to styles of clothing, as this obviously fascinates me seeing as I own what I consider an alternative thrift store Retro Kitten Apparel. Please help me out by including any styles I may have left out. Please do not send any links as I will not open any links, and must search the style myself.




Crust Punk

Pogo Punk

Horror Punk

Steam Punk




Gothic or Goth

Emotional (Emo)




Steam Punk

Pin up






Heavy Metal




Fag Hag

Independent (Indie)



Bohemian (Boho)

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