Wearing Goth Boots After 30: Successfully Squashing The Stereotype

Ok, so February really was crazy…

But it wasn’t just because of the dogI was actually secretly working on this project while everything else was going on.  It was nuts, I’ll be honest, and I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to get everything done I had planned on.  But I did, and now you have it!

Goth Boots After 30

These boots have been quite a challenge for me, but I just couldn’t justify getting rid of them.  They were a gift from a friend, and they’ve been sitting in my closet ever since, begging to be worn but a challenge (to say the least).  Most folks don’t look at goth boots and think “normal”; there’s quite a stigma attached to the look they present.  That, however, is the reason I had to strive to work them into my regular look.  After all, while my style is definitely Rock Star, I don’t tend to rock the stereotypical “goth” look that is certainly the one that comes to mind when one sees, well, goth boots.  But they’re a great, comfortable, statement shoe that adds some much-needed height to my petite frame, so I figured I’d tackle the challenge the goth boots presented to me as a 30 year old and share my results with you.  Here are 7 great looks I put together with them.

And The Band Played On

I decided to ease into wearing the goth boots by wearing them out on a weekend.  I figured they’d be a little easier to wear out at a bar, so when I went to see a band play at one of the local bars, I threw them into the mix.  I wore them over grey OTK socks and sheer charcoal tights, with black and grey pinstriped shorts and a black tank.  I added my striped jacket and some long necklaces.  I rocked out my hair a little, scrunching it as I dried it, and went with a darker eye.

Goth Boots Over 30: And The Band Played On

I totally loved this look, and realized that the boots were actually pretty suited to my Rock Star style.  Perhaps that’s a “duh” moment for you, but it was a big huge “ZOMG!” for me.  I was totally comfortable in this outfit, and got quite a few “hot boots” comments from other chicks at the bar.  And while I had the height of heels, my feet didn’t kill me at the end of the night like the normally would have, so total added bonus!

All That Glitters is Skull

I snagged this great red shirt with a studded skull on the front for a couple bucks at Discovery, and thought it would be a perfect way to wear my goth boots on a regular weekend day.  I layered my knit vest with the faux fur collar over the tee, and added a black scarf to balance out the heaviness of the boots.  I tucked my torn skinny jeans into the boots, but before I did I put on floral tights–I needed an extra layer of warmth because February was pretty chilly, but also liked the softness of the floral against the, uh, gothiness of the boots.

Goth Boots Over 30: All That Glitters is Skull

I really liked the textures in this look, and the juxtaposition of hard and soft.  The toughness of the torn jeans, the skull, and the boots were softened by the vest and the peeks of floral print.  This was a great outfit for random errands with hubs on a Saturday, and I loved the look!  I also loved keeping my feet dry trudging through slushy parking lots, haha.

Making Them Work At Work

I decided to brave wearing the goth boots to work, but wasn’t ready to totally “out” them.  I wore them as part of my Scary Spice costume on Halloween, and got some flack for them, so I knew the first time I wore them to work I’d hear the same kind of crap.  So the first time I wore them, I wore them under a long tan maxi skirt, with a black and white striped sweater.  Since I liked the way the black scarf balanced out the black boots, I wore it again (plus, it was cold).  I added a jean jacket, for another layer, and yes, I had sweater tights on under the skirt.

Goth Boots Over 30: Making Them Work At Work

This outfit was a resounding success!  Most people didn’t even notice the boots, and those who did were shocked they were the same ones I had on for Halloween.  Wearing them with normal clothing, it seems, totally changed the reception of them.  Yes, I had to change shoes for the drive there and home, but I did that anyway quite a few times in February because of the snow anyway, so it really wasn’t all that big of a deal.

Making His Heart Melt

I really wanted to try to dress them up a little bit, so when hubs and I decided to hit Melting Pot for a much-needed romantic night together, I took the opportunity.  We headed to our favorite restaurant before I left for my work trip, and I wore the goth boots with my black tiered skirt with an olive sweater tucked in (you might recognize it from 7 Days of Sparkle).  I wore sheer black tights, olive OTK socks, and the goth boots.  To dress it up a little more, I added some long strands of seed beads and a purple sparkly clutch.

Goth Boots After 30: Making His Heart Melt

Another successful outfit!  Hubby initially wasn’t super-thrilled I was wearing these out to a nicer restaurant, but I plead my case well (“they’re patent leather, people would be wearing jeans anyway, and platform shoes/boots are totally in style right now anyway”), and in the end, the look grew on him.  After I received a couple complements walking through the restaurant, he realized they actually didn’t look as bad as he’d thought.  I tried not to gloat, haha.

Sidenote: I wore my hair up quite a bit in February, I’m realizing.  Not necessarily the smartest thing, with it being cold, but with everything going on with the dog and work, an extra 15 minutes of sleep at the sacrifice of drying my hair was totally worth it.

Dressing Up For Work

When I got back from the trade show event, I had to give a presentation at work.  I figured I would take a little bit of a risk and really dress them up for the office.  I wore my black and white lace dress with a red cardigan and opaque black tights.  I balanced the bottom off, again, with the black scarf, and added an arm party and my black rhinestone leather cuff on the other arm.  I wore simple earrings and pulled my hair half up to make myself a little more polished-looking.

Goth Boots After 30: Dressing Up For Work

I honestly expected HR to send me home to change my shoes.  We had our monthly birthday celebration in the morning, where I saw pretty much the entire office, but it wasn’t an issue.  A couple people asked me if they were the same boots from Halloween, but instead of being met with “WTF” type attitudes, everyone was impressed that I was able to actually wear them “in real life”.  Even after the cake, I didn’t have a problem.  It was quite a breath of fresh air, and made me realize that if you style something right, it can actually work.  Granted, most people couldn’t pull goth boots off at the office, especially on a day they have to give a presentation, but I have a pretty lax office in terms of dress code, which I’ve talked about before.

Of Corsets Stylish!

Haha I’m such a pun nerd.  I probably could have gotten away with this outfit at work, but I don’t know that I’d risk the corset and the goth boots at the same time.  I wanted to dress a little bolder for an evening out with the girls.  We did dinner followed by dancing at one of the local clubs, and this look was perfect for both.  I wore a sheer-ish white buttondown under a leopard print corset with black leggings and the goth boots. For a little extra warmth at dinner, I added this fab washed grey, batwing cardigan.   Goth Boots After 30: Of Corsets Stylish

This was a pretty good look for the night, though with the corset I felt like it leaned a little towards the sterotypical look.  I don’t think I would have worn the corset with the shirt and leggings if I was different shoes.  But that’s ok.  Or maybe it’s something I need to try?  The corset was an impulse buy that I’ve been hanging on to because I knew I’d find a use for it the second I got rid of it, so perhaps I should try this look with different shoes, or maybe jeans.

Casual, Freaky Friday

Rounding out the 7th look is one I wore to work one Friday towards the end of February.  I wanted to be comfortable, so I wore dark grey skinny jeans tucked into the goth boots, with an oversized cream sweater (I’m sure you recognize it, I wore the heck out of it last year).  I wanted to balance out the dark on the bottom, but was a little sick of the black scarf… so I turned to my skully scarf and knotted it like a tight infinity scarf.  I added a long gold necklace with a claw on the end, and that was it.

Goth Boots After 30: Casual, Freaky Friday

The skulls and the claw necklace might have otherwise taken this outfit towards stereotypical goth, with the dark denim and the boots, but the comfy, chunky sweater offset all of it and make it work.  Kind of like the outfit with the floral tights–I think it’s the hard and soft thing that really works.  At this point, no one at work batted an eye at the goth boots, and they haven’t since.

Overall, project Goth Boots After 30 was a total success!

I learned quite a bit about styling and how it affects stereotypes around certain items of clothing.  I also learned that with styles getting a little more “out there”, pieces like goth boots are becoming a little more mainstream and easier for people to accept as part of everyday wear.

While not everyone can pull off something like this, do you think you’d be brave enough to try something like this?  Could you take an item that has such a stigma, such a stereotype look attached to it, and work it into your normal wardrobe?  Let me know what you think in the comments!

32 comments for “Wearing Goth Boots After 30: Successfully Squashing The Stereotype

  1. April 1, 2013 at 12:03 PM

    A part of me has always loved the buckles and patent leather of the goth boot look but have never been able to figure out how to fit them into my preppy/sophisticated look. Any suggestions?

  2. April 1, 2013 at 12:09 PM

    Hmm, tough one, since they’re so anti-preppy. You could work them with a black pencil skirt, black tights, and then a buttondown shirt under a sweater. You could pattern-mix too, which I know is totally your thing, and do a patterned tight with it, and a plaid buttondown. With all black on the bottom, they’d kind of blend in a little more (similar to the outfit I did with the lace dress). I think they’d look good with a peplum dress or skirt too, though that style just doesn’t work on me AT ALL.

  3. Jenna Wood
    April 1, 2013 at 12:58 PM

    I like the boots with the jeans the best, but that may be because they are paired with bright colors. Lots of great styling ideas here!

  4. April 1, 2013 at 1:02 PM

    Yea I think of all the outfits, the one with the red skull top was my favorite.

  5. bre dale
    April 1, 2013 at 1:46 PM

    Making his Heart Melt and Freaky Friday were def. my faves! Those boots didn’t scream goth in either of those looks. Kudos!

  6. April 1, 2013 at 3:48 PM

    LOL, so cute!

  7. April 1, 2013 at 4:17 PM

    Thanks 😉

  8. April 1, 2013 at 5:11 PM

    Oh my goodness! I love them! I couldn’t wear them due to the platform style of the soles. I have bad knees and it would cause a lot of pain. But dang they look awesome! Oh! They could also be used with Steampunk fashion!

  9. April 1, 2013 at 5:22 PM

    You definitely rose to the challenge! You make the boots work effortlessly with each outfit.

  10. April 1, 2013 at 5:33 PM

    Definitely, they are VERY Steampunk!

  11. April 1, 2013 at 6:13 PM

    Wow! I could never pull this off but I love those boots! I especially like the first look and the casual Friday look the best! I never would have thought to put any of those outfits together with boots like that, these suit you well. You should definitely where them more!!

  12. April 1, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    Thanks! 🙂

  13. April 1, 2013 at 6:38 PM

    I love the outfits! I could never rock those boots but you do it beautifully!

  14. April 1, 2013 at 6:43 PM


  15. April 1, 2013 at 7:38 PM

    I have never been into the Goth style myself, but I have to say I really liked a lot of your outfits. Being over 30 myself, there are times you wonder “can I still pull this off.” It’s kinda the bridge between young adult and a more mature look. Sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith!

  16. Christin Connell
    April 1, 2013 at 7:50 PM

    lolz, this is great. They all turned out so awesome! ;D

  17. April 1, 2013 at 7:59 PM

    I like them in the first post and corset post. But Even if you were 21 those are probably the only looks I would like anyway! HA! Good for you for giving it a go!

  18. April 1, 2013 at 9:53 PM

    I love all the different outfits you wore with those boots! So fun to see how you could make them work with so many different styles. I don’t think I could ever rock those boots like you did since I am after 40! lol

  19. April 1, 2013 at 10:00 PM

    Ooooh… I wonder if I can even manage to hang onto these for another 9 years to try this then! LOL

  20. April 1, 2013 at 10:01 PM

    Goth was never my thing either, and had my friend not given me these boots, I never ever would have even bought them. But it felt like such a waste letting them be thrown out, and then never wearing them once I owned them!

  21. April 1, 2013 at 10:02 PM

    Thanks <3

  22. April 1, 2013 at 10:04 PM

    Haha Shelley, I could totally see you wearing something similar to the corset look! But with normal shoes, not goth boots.

  23. April 2, 2013 at 2:14 AM

    bravo. all the looks work, and work well!

    I try to be brave with my style choices and now I want to be braver. I like you, tend be a bit on the rocker side. But I don’t want to be overly cliche.

    Again, Bravo!

  24. April 2, 2013 at 6:15 AM

    I don’t think I could pull this off, especially since I am over 40, but all of these outfits are super cute. I love the long skirt where the boots are sort of a surprise underneath.

  25. April 2, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    I know what you mean in terms of being overly cliche… especially when it comes to a style that already has a stereotype attached to it.

  26. Lee
    May 20, 2013 at 8:57 PM

    I think this is pretty cool. I think this can work for guys too. I have a pair of patent leather platform boots that I wear with dark jeans and a plain t-shirt, nothing too crazy. People tend to give me complements on the boots more than they do trying to say bad things about them.

  27. May 21, 2013 at 12:19 AM


  28. Ruth Griffeth
    October 12, 2014 at 10:17 AM

    I love wearing my “goth” boot, and or clothing and I am over 40. I think that as long as you have the right mix and the right attitude then people don’t think anything of it.

  29. Escape
    March 13, 2015 at 12:41 PM

    You are my idol!!!!!!

  30. March 13, 2015 at 3:12 PM

    Haha you made my day! 🙂

  31. wen budro
    March 20, 2015 at 8:50 PM

    Those are some cute outfits and those boots….wow. I’m not so sure that I could have ever pulled those off even in my teens or 20s.

  32. Tabby
    February 3, 2017 at 11:02 AM

    I go out of my way to have this look. My dresses and skirts/shirts are pretty normal / bland, and I often throw on my much abused, peeling combat boots with them. No one cares. Or more precisely I don’t care who cares about it. I’m 41, I no longer give a rats furry beehive about ‘the rules’. I am also officially stealing some of these looks off you, just so’s you know! 🙂

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