There seems to be this stigma that you can't be a feminist and like fashion. You can't spend time putting yourself together and be a feminist. It's almost as if you can't be a woman and be a feminist. I have an issue with that, I think it is just that being a woman, my ability to change my appearance or accessorize my outfit that makes me stronger. As women we embrace change which we will do by getting a new haircut or change the way we dress to get the ball rolling. We jump in both feet, we can adapt and overcome anything that life throws our way. I can dress sexy but shouldn't be shamed or told I am not a feminist or I that I am projecting or feeding a stereotype. If men act stupid around a woman that is flaunting an asset who is the weaker sex? Honestly, isn't she holding all of the cards? Fashion was pioneered by strong women that were smart, beautiful and visionary, one of the most iconic fashion houses was a built by a woman.
Mademoiselle Coco Chanel born out of wedlock in France to a laundry woman and street vendor was a far cry from the glamorus Mademoiselle Coco that changed the course of history and fashion. She notoriously created an alternate begining and upbringing presenting herself as being more glamorous than she actually was. Although she was introduced to the right social circles by becoming a kept woman in the 1900's a child that was raised in a convent, the child of an unwed laundry woman was not destined to be anything more than her situation would allow. She was a woman with a past that was well quite colorful and today we have a name for woman that are 'kept', it is most definitely not Mademoiselle. However she got to that stature make no mistake she earned it, she fought for it and never let anyone tell her she couldn't. Coco changed the face of fashion while creating a little controversy along the way, actually if you think about it she was a survivor doing whatever she needed to do in a time that was not kind to women.
One of my favorite women has to be Diane Von Furstenburg, the woman that created the most iconic, universally flattering dress....the wrap dress. It is sexy, feminine, sophisticated while being comfortable and easy to wear. Of course one look at her you can see where her inspiration was being drawn from. She was a Princess being married to Prince Ergon of Furstenburg and when she knew they were gettining married Diane did something amazing something that most women wouldn't have done. She decided she needed to be her own woman, not just a title that she married but to be someone in her own right. Her sophisticated, elegant, sexy wrap dress is still one of the most flattering and iconic dresses that minimizes your waist as well as creating curves that you may not have. She is a woman, she is sexy, she is beautiful and she celebrates that all while being a feminist. While girls all over the world dream of marrying their prince and living a glamorous life she dreamt of marrying her prince, becoming selfsufficient and living a life that matters.
There are other women in fashion that have built a career on being a woman, celebrating our sexuality and beauty while being feminist. No one can deny that Anna Wintour is the most powerful woman in fashion credited with saving British Vogue before becoming the most influential editor of New York Vogue. Of course, we all know that The Devil Wears Prada is based on Anna and she is notorious for well, being a bitch but a bitch that is the most powerful woman in fashion. Self-made Jenna Lyons, a girl that was not the traditional face of fashion managed to go from 'ugly duckling' to the 'woman that dresses America'. Jenna worked her way up from an assistant to an assistant at J. Crew to the President of the J.Crew group. A girl that was bullied for her apearance is now dressing the First Lady to college students and even those kids that tormented her. These women are the face of fashion/beauty all while being feminist.
There are so many more women that are notorious for being fashionable, beautiful and sexy all while being feminist. Why should we give up being women in order to be feminist? When did feminist decide being a woman was a sign of weakness? I don't think I should have to give up my feminity in order to be a feminist. Being 'sexy' isn't a sign of weakness and if some man is effected by my appearance isn't it his weakness, not mine? I am a feminist, I believe women need to be paid equal wages and given every opportunity that is given to a man but I also believe I should be allowed to be feminine without being made to feel I am performing some sort of injustice to feminist and women. I do not feel guilty because I won't get the mail without being fully dressed and sometimes with a red lip because I do that to honor myself. I don't understand how women can shame a 'sister' for simply celebrating her womanhood and everything that, that entails. Why can't you be a feminist that wears a wrap dress with her strands of pearls and covet her September issue, can't we have it all?