07/01/2015

Androgenius


  In my previous post I mentioned the new positioning of men’s fashion into a space where it has started taking inspiration from the women’s lines. It’s ironic that menswear has been so strictly defined in the past few decades in the first place, as many staples such as heels (actually started by men) were regularly worn by all before the era of the suit. Consequently, womenswear is regularly inspired by its male counterpart, with collections full of masculine suits trotting down the runway each fashion week. 


  Women had to fight for their right to wear the trousers in their life (both metaphorically and literally). They may have been introduced in the early 1900’s by Paul Poiret, but trousers were only truly adopted during the second feminist wave, when women finally demanded to be seen as equal to men, and have all the accompanying freedom. Feminism is still a battle being fought today (ever so more in the limelight now, if you count Beyonce or Chanel) and is slowly bringing alongside it a change in the masculine as well. 


  There’s no reason we actually assign clothing to either gender. A piece of fabric is genderless, it’s the hands that construct a garment partnered with the social construct behind it that give a garment its gender. We see a man in a dress as strange, and yet a man in a toga is perfectly normal, even though they’re basically the same thing. It’s a barrier that is slowly crumbling, but still stands firm. The two biggest influences in breaking it down being trans-people and the fashion forward (for completely different reasons). Fashion forward men are tired of relying on menswear and have turned to womenswear to find more interesting pieces. It’s why you see Pharell on the red carpet in a baby pink Celine coat: because there is no baby pink coat in any mens line. 


  On the design side, new up and coming giants such as HBA and JW Anderson have started pushing the envelope. The designs of both HBA and Anderson are all unisex, a refreshingly simple viewpoint that lets them focus on the psychological traits of the person who will be wearing the clothes rather than on their biometrics. Even in modeling, androgynous models such as Andreja Peric (fellow Serb, holla), have broken boundaries and appeared on both sides of the runway, specifically because of their gender-bending nature. It shows the beginnings of something great to come in the future of dressing, when we can put aside thinking about who other people want us to be in the morning and focus on who we want to be. It’ll be a long time till you see a guy in an Elie Saab dress at a red carpet event, but a clutch is right around the corner. 

 Shirt from Tudor
Jumper from Topman
Jeans from Asos
Bag from Givenchy
Shoes from Dr Martens
Sunglasses from Covent Garden Market

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