So I have this slight obsession with “theming,” meaning I take a basic theme and run to Hell with it. For me this often takes the form of feels and looks, interior design, playlists, design, fictional lifestyles and subcultures, and in fashion, and quite often all of the above.
One such instance of this is the Forest Boy. Inspired heavily by the Japanese Mori Girl subculture, a Forest Boy is one who lives close to nature, even in the heart of the urban wilds. His look, his demeanor, and his lifestyle all imitate and/or coexist with the natural world. Ideally, living in a cabin or cottage far removed from society, in the forest or mountains, the Forest Boy collects, hunts, and fishes for his meals,(Or has a huntsman as a partner ;P), as well as pays due respect for his bounty. Yes, a small contingent of males do already exist that dress in a masculine version of Mori Girl fashion, but I find that these examples are by and far less woodsy and practical, and more hip and frilly and over-accessorized. I simply can’t imagine a man tromping through the woods in a sweater-skirt-loincloth-thing.
The Forest Boy is the image I portray in my head when I travel to the Upper Peninsula, and my ideas of this icon are very much colored by my experiences there. Keep in mind this is first an foremost a “look,” and secondarily a lifestyle ideal, which is meant to merely guide the Forest Boy, not bind him to one path. Also keep in mind that this is a fictional subculture, not one that I have observed people follow, or one which I expect people to follow, yet built upon and from existing groups of people.
Key Words: Rustic, folk, natural, hand-made, vintage, practical, simple. Casual but well put together as opposed to dressy or outright sloppy.
Look: The woodsman or huntsman as filtered through World street fashion. Nothing too showy or outlandish, simple designs, classic and practical, which you can count on to last you for years to come. Boots, overcoats, layers, vests, henleys and grandad shirts, a pair of broken in Levis, canvas or cotton trousers, plaid and (maybe) some camouflage if its done correctly, are all items that come to mind. Buttons and buckles instead of zippers. Wood, metal and bone instead of plastic. Really most anything you can find from Levi these past couple years, that wouldn’t fit into an urban look but more of a rustic one would work for Forest Boy, now that I think of it. Northern European folk patterns and garments would also be appropriate.
Accessories: Minimal, simplistic, and functional if possible. A nice compass as a necklace. Stone and bone pendants hung from leather. Canvas or leather rucksacks and bags. Leather cuffs. Scarves, shawls and maybe even cloaks. Caps and furry hats. Things like rings or dangling jewelry should be minimal and simple, hammered silver or gold would be appropriate. A good knife would be very useful.
Materials- Rough, aged leather, warm wools and furs, cotton, flannel, natural textiles, twill and tweed, wood, bone, feathers, metals, stone.
Visible textures, both soft and rough in colors which are masculine and natural such as whites, greens, blues, browns, grays and blacks, seasonal smatterings of reds yellows and oranges.
Sounds- Quite awhile ago I made a playlist titled “Forest Boy” and it collects the types of music that make me think of retreating up north. The sounds are folky, mostly calm and soothing, quiet, acoustic or at the very least not electric, emotional and heartfelt. You can listen to this at my Grooveshark: Forest Boy. Artists like Bon Iver, The Tallest Man on Earth, Mumford & Sons, Shugo Tokumari, and even Motorhead are included (just trust me on that last one until you hear it), and I periodically add more as I find them.
I’m interested to know what you think. Do you have any additions you think would fit? Any suggestions? I’d love to see any photos you may have with you think relate. I’d like to do more posts of this nature, so if any of you wonderful people out there like it, please ♥, reblog, or reply! Let me know what you think! (Note: Some photos were found around Tumblr, but I did not really check what came from which blogs, so if you are an original poster and would like credit, please let me know!)