“The most common way people give up their power
is by thinking they don’t have any.”
~ Alice Walker
Quote shown at the beginning of “Miss Representation”
Last week, I attended a screening of Miss Representation, an amazing and heartbreaking film about how mainstream media contribute to the under-representation of women in positions of power and influence in the United States. The film touched on body image, sexism, racism, the systematic demonization of feminists, the nauseating objectification of women, and many other issues that outraged and sickened me. Images of high school girls crying because they hate themselves, political leaders being dismissed for their fashion choices,and bikini-clad body after roiling bikini-clad body made me dizzy with dismay. And, if I’m being honest, it made me call into question my work, my writing, and my goals. I want women to be empowered, and in a moment of panic I questioned the value of style advice as a tool for empowerment. After all, the problem is that women are increasingly taught to believe that the ONLY thing that matters about us is how we look. And I’ll be damned if I’m going to contribute to that insidious lie.
Originally posted 2011-10-24 06:07:24.
I’ve been trying to incorporate the phrase, “don’t worry about it,” into my advice posts as often as I can. I’m happy to give my two cents on just about any topic, but I always want to emphasize that style rules are really just guidelines, that they can be helpful but should never cause self-doubt, that they can offer structure but should never feel oppressive. I never want any of you to feel that fashion-related advice is dragging you down, so I’ve started capping off many tutorials with a bullet point that simply says, “don’t worry about it.”
Originally posted 2011-12-19 06:09:36.
Lovely reader Jenni (from Helsinki!) sent this question via e-mail:
I’m thinking about a subject, which I think you haven’t covered yet (or at least I don’t remember): how to wear coats with skirts and dresses and especially how different hem lengths and silhouettes work together. The climate here in Helsinki must be pretty similar to what you have there in MN, which means winters are COLD. Therefore it would be great to read more about coat lengths compared to skirt lengths. Example from my life: I was wearing a lovely felt A-line skirt, that hit below the knees, then realized all my trench coats were considerably shorter and my nice outfit was totally ruined after I added a coat. I had go out and couldn’t change the skirt but I ended up feeling stupid the whole day… As the winter is approaching it would be great to hear your thoughts and how you’ve solved these kinds of problems.
Originally posted 2011-12-05 06:08:38.