"Feminine" For Everyone

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"Feminine" For Everyone

Postby meatjacket » Sun Feb 21, 2016 3:17 am

Hello all.

I often find myself appreciating the "look" of femininity on women (see: cute but not cute for you), and enjoy seeing it on men as well, but it leads me to wonder: Why are things like the color pink, blouses, nail polish and earrings all inherently "feminine"? They're mere decorations for the human body after all and i enjoy the idea of taking away the "girliness" of these things and making them open to all genders.

It's not wrong to want to wear these things as a male (i will be referring to this side of the argument because of two reasons 1: i see mens fashion widely accepted in womens fashions already so it is not as much of an issue 2: it is my current stance) or even to like the idea of such things. Wearing these "girl" items will not make you a girl, gay, trans, crossdressing, etc.. or anything other than who you already are, just open to experimenting with new clothings. So many negative labels are placed upon these, and to go against that, i move towards desexualize the clothing/accessories.

Not about "making guys look like girls", infact its quite the opposite, "making girl's looks, guy's (too)". Who says girls have to look like X, who says guys cant wear Y?



tips
* dudes! shop in the women's section, especially in a thrift store! You dont have to shop only in the womens section and you can usually find some pretty cool stuff with different fits than you may expect.
* girls! trade clothes with your guy friends for fun! You could also have a little salon day together at home and paint nails or try on jewelry
* dudes! be open to experimentation and like with any other aesthetic, dont rush completely into it if you do not feel comfortable with it.

my apologies if this is at all offensive or if i came across something in a rude way, it is not my intention

would love some others' input!
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby ahhh-aww » Sun Feb 21, 2016 5:54 am

yeah, i'd definitely would like to see more qt feminine bois. also, makeup. it looks really good on some males.
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby trasparenti » Sun Feb 21, 2016 10:37 am

I'm down with it. At the end of the day, if you love pink, just wear it. If ya wanna paint your nails, go for it. There's certainly a stigma in men's fashion regarding breaking down the gender barrier and allowing femininity in. After being told our whole lives to be ruff-n-tuff doods it certainly might be hard to allow yourself to wear dresses or makeup. The thing is, there's nothing inherently gendered about clothes, it's all been learned through years of societal indoctrination. No politics or anything, it is what it is. It can be tough to express an interest in fashion or a predilection for pink when some of your peers may shun you but that's what real friends are for. Life's to short to not be yourself ya feel? I always hear people asking other people who wear avant-garde stuff or goth-ninja or whatever, "when do you wear that?", "no way you wear that when you're just getting groceries", "I wish I could dress like that but I live in the midwest/south/west/etc." A lot of people really do wear the stuff they like wherever they go. At the end of the day, it's not a costume, it's just clothes you like

My personal view on things is: if you like the way stuff looks, wear it. If you like the way something sounds, listen to it. If something is fun, do it. Just today my friend was showing me some new wallets his store got, and I really liked the 'women's' wallets more (turns out they were all unisex, he only accidentally called them women's wallets) than the men's selection. If I had money for a new wallet I'da grabbed one for sure. Anyways, point is, a lot of guys have trouble letting go of what they've been taught by men's magazines and style guys with ideas for what constitutes appropriate dudewear. There was a lot of pushback from r/mfa and r/streetwear when my mini-photo essay and list got posted there, because those communities are built around established concepts of dress and are less open to boundary-pushing fashion. Not to condemn them, by any means, just acknowledging that some people don't want to work around the norms of fashion and dress, and that's okay too. For those of ya willing to expand your boundaries, I appreciate ya.

rambling semantics
Spoiler:
Now, I do think there are such things as a 'feminine' and a 'masculine' silhouette - slimmer and lighter versus wider and heavier - but I don't think that these terms are actually related to gender. Neither type is exclusive to any gender, nor do is it possible to codify every outfit using two simple signifiers. I believe that it's easier to distinguish them in Western style clothing; think 20th century American clothing around the time of Dior's New Look - men in big boxy suits, women in figure-shaping dresses. Meanwhile, other civilizations avoided Western-style dress for a pretty long time, so they had (and still have) a different view of the subject of gendered clothes. Obviously I don't think that either one is inherently better or worse and it's possible to incorporate elements of both in a single outfit. For example, someone wearing slim pants and a large, boxy coat is channeling a little of each. I simply like using those terms because it can make it easier to illustrate a point, not because I believe that any silhouette or piece of clothing is exclusive to any one group. I mean, SLP has built a business out of making the feminine silhouette masculine and appealing to men, and since I've moved to Japan I've lost count of the number of women wearing enormous jeans, wide overalls, or oversized coats. I prefer the latter but at the end of the day, just wear what feels right.



I love brands that make clothes that can be shared between men and women. Yantor does this really well.
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ideas
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby jujumaster » Sun Feb 21, 2016 2:12 pm

A lot of it is seemingly too contrived. The often used phrases of 'pushing boundaries' and 'breaking gender norms' usually seen in the blurb of a JW Anderson, vachement, or other this years favourite designers favourite designer collection has almost become a cliche now.

I do like androgyny though, but when it is the complete grey area between the genders, not just sticking men in skirts or women in trousers. Those examples of trasparenti where it is the same outfit, with neither specific side in mind are what I prefer to see.
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby dakaf_fal » Sun Feb 21, 2016 3:57 pm

@jujumaster

This why I find Stephen Schneider interesting. It's cool that he designs all his fabrics in house, and even cooler that he uses the same fabrics for both his mens and womens lines.

I'm always on the for more brands that make gender neutral clothing. Kapital does this, and it's great that I can look at their clothes and have no idea whether it's intended for men or women and not care because either way it's still awesome clothing.
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby schiaparelli » Mon Feb 22, 2016 11:17 pm

meatjacket wrote:Hello all.

I often find myself appreciating the "look" of femininity on women (see: cute but not cute for you), and enjoy seeing it on men as well, but it leads me to wonder: Why are things like the color pink, blouses, nail polish and earrings all inherently "feminine"? They're mere decorations for the human body after all and i enjoy the idea of taking away the "girliness" of these things and making them open to all genders.


hello ~
i love you!

i think you articulated something really beautiful here which is the reclamation of what is traditionally "feminine" and not just re-contextualizing it into womenswear but also bringing it into menswear—and showing that there is a way for menswear and men to OWN the idea of the feminine, to not escape it or avoid it out of FEAR and ANXIETY that their masculine identity will be threatened—but engage in this aesthetic space openly and joyfully!

i find it very important to re-approach the feminine in womenswear but i think it is particularly transgressive and radical and strong to have BOYS WEARING PINK AND FRILLS AND FLORALS. imo the idea of "agender" or "genderless" clothing often skews to a masculine direction—e.g. girls wearing oversized men's bombers, relaxed-fit things, "boyfriend" jeans, unisex sizing really means "cut to a man's body but we think women will wear it too"…

so i question whether this is really "agender" or "genderless" or if it is really reasserting this idea that "masculine" norms are better than or more appropriate for everyone than "feminine" norms… i would be thrilled and deeply engaged with menswear that specifically borrows feminine tropes in an UNAPOLOGETIC and BOLD way.

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i have been waiting my whole life to post this image
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Last edited by schiaparelli on Mon Feb 22, 2016 11:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby khayandhi » Mon Feb 22, 2016 11:32 pm

schiaparelli wrote:imo the idea of "agender" or "genderless" clothing often skews to a masculine direction—e.g. girls wearing oversized men's bombers, relaxed-fit things, "boyfriend" jeans, unisex sizing really means "cut to a man's body but we think women will wear it too"…

so i question whether this is really "agender" or "genderless" or if it is really reasserting this idea that "masculine" norms are better than or more appropriate for everyone than "feminine" norms… i would be thrilled and deeply engaged with menswear that specifically borrows feminine tropes in an UNAPOLOGETIC and BOLD way.


was coming here to post something along these lines –– i think there's a conception a lot of us have in which men's things are default / un-'marked' / blank / good and women's things are a deviation from that (well, we know this, in that it's much more socially acceptable for women to be moderately masculine than for men to be even a little feminine; you can extend this to other axes as needed i. e. the apparent culturelessness of 'white' stuff) and there's therefore an extent to which we as human beings existing in society are quite bad at producing true neutrality vs. something that still speaks primarily to a privileged category. so a lot of stuff that we look at as gender-neutral and un-gendered (this is independent of personal taste and other aesthetic considerations – I like a lot of these things! – and solely w r t explicit gendering) is actually strongly masculine of center if evaluated on a female scale and not a default male one

i don't know to what extent one can INSTANTLY reconceptualize this stuff because i think the (extreme, deviant) aesthetic category of 'feminine' and the (normal, unremarkable) category of 'masculine' are almost nonoverlapping in people's minds, but it's something to think about. in the meantime i am v taken with the idea of more explicit/overt femininity being ACCESSIBLE and OPEN to men, v transgressive and v good idea. DESTIGMATIZE FEMININE THINGS
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby meatjacket » Tue Feb 23, 2016 10:30 pm

earrings :-)

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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby wolflarsen » Wed Feb 24, 2016 11:37 am

I find that, as a man thrifting in the women's section, there are plenty of opportunities when it comes to denim/leather jackets and some sweaters, but shirts and pants and most things with buttons just don't sit right.


I enjoy adding some "middle ground" to my aesthetic, but I don't think of it as "feminine" or anything. It started with painting my nails, and I would love to get a bit more into makeup/contouring.
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby schiaparelli » Fri Apr 22, 2016 11:12 pm

so for the grace wales bonner f/w 2016 show, they had models with gold glitter dusted over their faces. i love this because it is a very typically feminine thing to have obvious makeup (i mean, many male models are probs wearing foundation or they have their brows filled in, but the goal is never that the viewer recognizes that tactic and the work that went into it) and this is a particularly cheery, playful, endearing look.

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there's also this excellent photograph from bonner f/w 2015

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the strong blush! the elegant, glamorous delicacy of the jewelry! all very fun and intriguing ways of representing/reframing masculinity. from the guardian's review of the collection

Young, skinny black men lounged around reeds and carpets wearing a mixture of 70s sportswear, thick velvets and headdresses made of shells. It felt decadent, flamboyant and, above all, different. “My work is about a softness and a sensuality, being comfortable with that,” says Bonner. “I try to make my images as unstereotypical as possible.” They are reminiscent of the studio portraits by photographers Malick Sidibe and Samuel Fosso, and similar compositions will be in place for Fashion in Motion.
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Re: "Feminine" For Everyone

Postby adiabatic » Sat Apr 23, 2016 2:15 am

schiaparelli wrote:models with gold glitter dusted over their faces


Whenever I get holiday cards with glitter dust on them I wish I'd opened them with medical exam gloves and then they tend to go straight into the trash after being read once because otherwise the dust will get everywhere. Is glitter-dust makeup less obnoxious?
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