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Feminism in fashion

The day I realised that feminism is well and truly in fashion, was when I was scrolling through my Instagram and seeing the wide vas of digital coverage with the overwhelming feed of fashion. No matter who you talk to about feminism, it is worn but hardly ever spoken about. It is an issue that is brushed under the carpet, just like the crumbs from the packet of biscuits you have devoured. What is the true beauty of fashion? Is it how eccentric the pattern is on the ‘to-die- for’ jacket’ or is it the shape a dress comes in? I’m sure we know someone or we ourselves are guilty of owning a t-shirt with the slogans that repeat “We Should All Be Feminists” or “Future Is Female”. Wearing a piece of clothing with this statement has become a style choice rather than wearing it for a belief. Whether we are shopping from Primark or Louis Vuitton, us women can control the fashion that is around us.

Courtesy of Vogue

Of course, being a female in the fashion industry, I have found it refreshing to come across the rise of female empowerment and feminism in this industry. From designers and brands using clothing to campaign for equality. Then, why the hell not. With 2017 nearly coming to the end and 2018 soon approaching, it is time we take a look back and acknowledge how far we have come this year. Remember when Maria Grazia Chiuri made her mark with a entire collection in blue. This was down to aiming to make a colour genderless, which promoted the strive for equality. Also, anyone familiar with the brand Lawrenson? They were one of many fashion labels that became more distinct with a feminist identity by creating distinguished slogan t-shirts. There aim was seeking to empower women for that strive of change. And as much as we would love to thank Kendall Jenner for helping us have the confidence to free the nipple in the most stylish way possible, the Free The Nipple movement was one that has made its mark out of all years in feminism. As the question still remains to be answered ‘Why should it be acceptable for men to show their nipples but not women?’, many people in the industry are making sure this movement is getting noticed.

As much as actions speak louder than words, fashion writer Catherine St Germans told a statement to Global Blue saying ‘Being a feminist doesn't mean you need to shout. Equally, clothes that embody female empowerment can have impact while also being graceful.’ A few years back in 2014, Karl Lagerfeld pulled together a show to remember in Paris including the catwalk with models holding protest banners such as ‘Women’s rights are more than alright’ and ‘History is her story’. Despite this not being the first time of feminist sentiments on the runway, it was one that will remain in the fashion world for a while.

Courtesy of Vogue

Enough natter about the past feminists and the movements that happened back then, an iconic fashion designer has been described as one of fashion's first feminists. Yes, first. Jil Sander’s. Despite the likes of Chanel launching the female trouser suit, it wasn’t strong enough to empower the movement of the female sex. Sanders has the strongest recognition for empowering women through what they wear. She found herself talking upon the issue at her exhibition in Frankfurt saying “I never thought of myself as a feminist, but maybe I was, since I was not happy with the way women presented themselves,” the designer says. “I think my work was more about the rapprochement of the sexes and a more androgynous look for men and women. I was looking for more supportive ways to dress myself as a working woman. And since my needs were collective needs in the era of women entering the business world, my work turned out to help them.” Vogue 2017.

Courtesy of Getty

What are your thoughts on feminism within the fashion industry? Do you believe it is an issue worth talking about? Fashion has changed feminism up until now, and it will just get stronger and better. Bring on the future in fashion!

by Jordan Ellen Wood | @jordy_ellen

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