There was no gender segregation when it came to fashion in our family. For practicalities as much as aesthetics, the five children were often carted out wearing the same unisex clothes. We were ahead of the curve – unwittingly embracing the gender fluid trend more than two decades ahead of its official arrival.
As I grew older and spent more time away from the sheltered cocoon of family life, anxiety began to creep in – I started to think about the way I looked and developed a desire to conform. I would tear out pictures of beautiful women in magazines, hand them to the hairdresser and say “I want to look like that”.
Now, I have realised that the mood I show the world determines the mood the world shows me. It’s not clothes determining outcomes, but how they make me feel and the traits in my character that they emphasise.
Fashion has evolved and is moving beyond binary. Why do we need to define ourselves and our wardrobes by our sex? I have no idea what it’s like to be a woman. I only know what it’s like to be me.
I can enjoy fashion and cars at the same time. I can work in testosterone-driven industries yet acknowledge that deploying a certain level of feminine empathy will enhance not hinder. I don’t want to be in a box determined by gender stereotypes.
Much like the flares, the gender fluid trend is IDEAL for tall women. In fact, fashion is so much in our favour it’s almost a conspiracy.
This is an opportunity to expand our tall shopping remit to every single menswear brand while simultaneously being bang on trend and embracing the end of antiquated fashion and gender designations.
Where’s the downside in that?
Phew. This blog has been cathartic.
In these photos I’m trying to pretend it’s not raining wearing the Massimo Dutti shirt of some guy I know (less exciting than it sounds) and his belt too. My unisex New Balance trainers. The Acne men’s jeans I found at Question Air in Wimbledon; a boutique which has the most delightful staff you have ever met. They didn’t even bat an eyelid as I rifled through menswear, relishing the gender fluid trend that encourages individuality and fashion flexibility.
This outfit captures the zeitgeist of my youth; indifferent to the pressures to look and behave as society dictates.
HøFSisters challenge you to incorporate an item of menswear into your outfits this week. Shoes, jeans, shirts, cashmere jumpers, whatever you like. Tag @hofsisters and tell us how it makes you feel.