In these times of change I believe it’s more important than ever to focus on what clothes and our appearance means to ourselves.
I’ve been observing the influence and debates surrounding the #metoo and #timesup campaigns along with last week’s announcements that the glamorous walk on girls in darts along with the F1 pit girls are no more. It’s a huge debate and point of interest worldwide touching many industries and disrupting old norms. Fashion journalists are eagerly awaiting London Fashion Week debuting the Autumn Winter 2018 collections to see just how much these strong social change factors will influence the designs going down the catwalk.
In an extreme view, you could say that any form of making ourselves as women to look attractive is objectifying a woman. Are we decorating ourselves when we wear clothes for work or play? Or are we expressing our creativeness? And, if we are decorating ourselves for admiration from others, be it men or women is there anything wrong with that? It is time for a shakeup in attitudes towards women with equality and respect top of the agendas but how far will this go? I’m sure we are not going to start seeing pencil skirts and heels for men going down the catwalk, but equally I hope the runways are not full of demure and homogeneous clothing for women.
In these times of change, I believe it’s more important than ever to focus on what clothes and our appearance means to ourselves. We need to adjust our interpretations of stereotypical beauty that the media has fed us for decades, be less judgemental on what is right, wrong, beautiful or unattractive and here’s the most important bit - starting with ourselves. When we can respect our own body and how we present it to the world when you dress for yourself first and become comfortable with our own image then guess what? What others think really doesn’t matter.
When I get dressed each day the little voice in my brain asks, “Does this suit me? Is this right for me for what my day holds ahead?” And I know I’m not alone. It’s what every woman asks and it’s why I do the job I do. The only difference between me and those that ask for my help is that I take very little time to answer the question. If my first choices don’t quite hit the mark, I can quickly and confidently adjust, replace, add or subtract whatever it is that isn’t quite answering that question. When the voice in my brain asks again and the answer is positive, I feel happy, content and confident to go about my day and won’t think about my attire again unless I head off to do something different which requires a change of clothing. I know and love all the clothes in my wardrobe. Every piece is there for a reason and probably have some stories to tell too. Like photographs of friends, my wardrobe is there as a reminder of cherished memories and opportunities to have fun again.
Women are undoubtedly still buying more volume of clothes than men, with a lower average cost per item too but the really disappointing part is that she is less satisfied than her male counterpart. Call it the pressure of marketing that a woman feels to be more, look more, have more, making it harder to find confidence in what she wears, unless it is still attached to the shopping dopamine high of the new item. Sometimes simply because it's new, a woman can enjoy wearing that purchase. The problem comes when that high wears off and it finds itself stuffed at the back of the wardrobe along with all the unworn "I don't know why I bought that items."
I believe this is because so many women are not buying the right clothes in the first instance. If you spend some time focusing on what really enhances your body positives and plan your purchases, you will love wearing your clothes time and time again.