As I was wandering in and out of all the clothes shops in town today, desperately searching for a white jumper like the one I made up two years ago, I was reminded of something I learned about in Sociology lessons in high school.
Judith Butler wrote about Gender Performativity, which is the idea that acting, dressing, walking in a female way, so as to appear as female as possible, is a drag act - regardless of the biological sex of the person doing it. She knows the score, man, I'm telling you. As I wandered fearfully through aisles of puffy dresses and stupid shoes, I whispered silent thanks to Ms Butler for explaining this to me.
Y'see, it's not inborn knowledge. Girls don't automatically know how to apply eyeliner, or what to wear to a 'soirée', or whether red works with purple. They don't wake up one day in a tasteful sunglow-gold haze, sit bolt upright, and say "My gosh, I've been wearing dresses with flats all these years!"
So for my entire life, I've been making it up as I go along, desperately hoping that I won't get caught out. I throw on something that probably might look ok I guess, and venture outside into the hostile, judging gaze of those who knows more about fashion than me - i.e. everyone. I fear being accosted by Gok Wan or Trinny and Susannah; those supremely confident beings who seem to know exactly what I should wear despite not knowing who I am or what I like. Maybe they could help me. Maybe they could tell me what kind of occassion those horrible puffy dresses are actually for, and it would all fall into place, and I'd cry and we'd buy me a tangerine clutch to celebrate.
But until the day comes when I pledge my undying allegiance to Red magazine, if indeed the day ever comes, I'll continue to wear stuff I find in charity shops.
My most unfashionable fashion choices:
- a long denim jacket with stars and furry bits on. I bought it because it matches the jeans I got given by a friend and fell in love with. The jeans have since fallen apart, but the jacket lives on!
- man-shirts! I love man-shirts. I have one of my brother's that he gave me, and one of my dad's that he... hasn't noticed is gone.
- a massive black rucksack. It's technically for a laptop, but when most girls don't have room for their mobile phone in those tiny pink bags of theirs, I'm pulling hatstands and stuff out of mine.
- my nails are currently bitten raw, with chipped black nail varnish. Stylish!
- big stompy shoes. They're so worn down that they squeak on every surface known to man, even carpet somehow, so it's time I found some almost but not quite exactly the same to replace them.
In other news, I'm retiring my Creative Splurges blog. I won't delete it, but I won't be adding to it any more either - instead, feel free to check out my deviantART page!