For young women, discovering your place and direction in the world may feel tough and treacherous (and also time consuming for those that have a ‘live in the moment’ mindset). The people around us may enforce the idea that should weakness and empathy is a sign of instability. In some situations, yes weakness may not be able to combat what you are faced with, however instead of replacing these tender characteristics – embrace them, let them empower you through the way you dress, through your attitude towards something. (I mean look how happy I am in that picture above, ohhh wait it was because it was taken in the summer, when exams didn’t take up most of my life).
In the same respects, fashion has the power to empower one as well. A medium that has been shaped and changed over time due to cultural changes but also historical and the ever present social changes that are still, and will do, changing. Possibly overlooked in the respects of highly academic individuals; the psychology behind fashion is rather fascinating. How what we wear and who made it can impact us as individuals. How our actions can be influenced as a result of whether one feels confident in what they’re wearing. Fashion is more than just clothing. It symbols empowerment.
|All photos taken from Dazed Digital|
Women can often see themselves suffer caring underneath layers of clothing that say nothing about who they are – only a profession or a front that is accepted in the society we live in. In his SS16 collection, brought to life both as a presentation at London Fashion Week and in the pages of an accompanying book Irish designer was set on exploring the limitations placed on women’s lives and bodies. Representing real women and their bodies and the ways in which clothes have a bearing on their lives, it was quite interesting looking further into the presentation. (pictures above taken from Dazed Digital).
In order for women to feel empowered, liberated by fashion they need to have the influence that fashion can be anything you want it to be and in that way it’ll be something to celebrate.
Women being sexualised on both the streets and in the media (you just have to glance at the Daily Mail to see the scathing sexualisation of the whole Kardashian/Jenner clan and whilst I personally have no interest in their lives it is absurd to read such piteous comments said by a newspaper on what they are wearing). It is the cultivating a culture in which women (especially young women) can feel incredibly targeted. Every day on Snapchat the Daily Mail manages to find a new celebrity victim to scrutinize what they are wearing and why and in turn developing a culture in which women are objects to the male desire.
|The one piece of clothing that always makes me feel empowered is a great jacket !|
This just highlights his fashion for women is more than just clothes to wear everyday. It is a form of empowerment in which the can dress up, allowing themselves to feel confident without the sexual oppression of men or being judged by other women (this innate behaviour seemingly imbedded). In the same respect that feminism and fashion are rivers that run along side by side (a whole other post I could write a good essay on) empowerment through fashion is integral to the progression of expression. I’ve compiled a short checklist to make sure you feel empowered every time you leave the house (even on the days where you just want to cocoon inside).
- Do you feel good in what you’re wearing?
- Is there anything you’re wearing for someone else’s benefit over your own?
- Can you work to the best of your ability in what you’re wearing (comfy clothes aside)?
- Do you feel empowered if someone looks what you’re wearing up and down? Wear that bold outfit with confidence and this may start to be proven true.
It is also through the making of clothes that we can empower women and their lives. Clothes brands such as Birdsong give a percentage of their profit to women’s charities, either for refugees or victims of sex trafficking. It is through this process that women can be empowered and have the facilities to improve their lives and just shows that fashion empowerment is much deeper than just ‘that’s a really nice bold top, you must be feeling confident’ indipill.com. Fashion and the fashion industry have the power to change people’s lives and actually make a positive difference not just to our psychology but to our physical well being also.
|I always feel empowered when I wear this necklace that I bought in a little boutique a few years ago, it has some great memories attached to it and that is what makes it so special.|
We choose fashion because it gives us a sense of empowerment, confidence and liberty. Let fashion empower you and let it show how feminine you are, let your weaknesses empower you. In what ways does fashion empower you? I would love to know and for you to share your ideas!
eleanor // (ps my gcses tomorrow so I probably will not be posting very often, I mean I have a few posts pre-written but I have a lot more ideas brimming for after exams so watch this space!)