Monday, September 9, 2013

FUCHSIA FLUSH

A little while ago I decided to give 'The Traditional Club Look' a test drive by stepping out in a fuchsia peplum bodycon dress from Fairground. I'm usually the type to wear something most people would consider "unflattering" to an event in which neat silhouettes and feminine styles are encouraged. Validating a dress code is most definitely my worst fashion nightmare. But after some indiscernible quantity of public appearances in garishly unorthodox ensembles, the novelty wears off. And it paradoxically becomes even more head-turning to wear a look that does conform to expectation. So after enough hesitation, this outfit coalesced... and it turned out to be much more of a sartorial surprise than a look that would have actually been true to Bebe Zeva character. You know, like harem pants and sneaker wedges and an iPhone 5 charger wrapped twice around my neck. Instead of the usual response -- hands on hips and a lighthearted "you would..." -- I was met with (for the first time ever) a "you wouldn't!"



FROM TOP TO BOTTOM:
Gold necklaces - ROMWE, Daily Look
Fuchsia peplum bodycon dress - FAIRGROUND
"Modern sandal heels" - Daily Look

Maybe I'll just start dressing like this forever? Like literally just showing up for class in ass-accentuating mall dresses and ostentatious costume jewelry... this seems like a good segue into a conversation I'm going to force my readers to have with me about the Female Dialectic. I'm expected to honor an aesthetic wherein my "feminine qualities" like boobs, hips, and a butt are highlighted, otherwise I'm considered unattractive. And as a woman, my attractiveness is directly proportional to my worth as a human being. But then when I actually wear this shit out in public, I get slut-shamed for trying to draw attention to my body and appearance. I'm labeled 'superficial' and 'trashy.' As a consequence, lots of women instead opt for "the natural look" or pride themselves in resembling "one of the guys." But I find that behavior to be problematic as it encourages assimilation to androgyny and a concentrated movement away from symbols of femininity. I don't believe that women should ever reject clothes or products they associate with a "socially constructed idea of womanhood." I don't believe that is productive to the feminist cause. I believe that embracing what is associated with womanhood sends the message that there is nothing to be ashamed of. High heels, heavy makeup, tight clothing, so what? Shaming these symbols because they are "fake" is like expecting a POC to reject elements of their own "socially constructed culture" because it contributes to their oppression. NO. SHAME and REJECTION contribute to oppression. Celebration does not. Agency does not. Subverting what society encourages us to move away from because it is 1) a threat to conformity and 2) a reinforcement of diversity is empowering.

Everything is infinite,

Bebe Zeva

58 comments:

  1. You look gorgeous, those shoes are GORGEOUS!
    ♥ Filthy Fashion ♥

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  2. Okay i'm totally in love with this dress!!
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    S xx

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  3. Totally agree,girly things should not be dismissed as superficial and expressing your femininity should be considered an empowering thing.

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  4. Sweet pictures and a lovely outfit! :)
    Kisses
    Tabea

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  5. wear it with pride! you know i get alot of slack as a mother of two small children and almost 30 and married for 6 years. see my husband supports my fashion sense. he does not want me looking like everyone else, he says to be me. and when i drop my kids off at school...i get glares, i don't show too much because well two kids wrecked my body, i cover, i dress just..differently..i wear loud clothes that fall into my dress code at work, they just have alot more visual interest. moms look at me like i am a freak of nature because i did not show up at the school in my pj's. i am sorry i have to head to work after i drop them off. come on! so i applaud you for dressing the way you want. you are young and can pull off anything. Bravo Bebe Zeva! Bravo! www.shoepermarket.blogspot.com

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  6. such amazing fashion sense and i love the way you team your accessories together with bold and daring colours. The shoes i particularly loved. Especially the perspex aspect. Reminds me of the calmness of a jellyfish which would aid in the grounding of an 'out there' ensemble.

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  7. Absolutely brilliant commentary. Your color scheme ain't bad either. ;)

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  8. Amazing dress! ^-^

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  9. We could literally read a book of your blog posts. Such wise words and so funny!

    You look utterly gorgeous, even if you do look a bit "normal"!

    Lots of love,
    Eve & Faye x

    Sugar Spun Sisters - A blog about cosmetics, clothes & coeliac disease

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  10. Beautiful dress, and you raise a great point about clothing!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I liked the outfit a lot and I think you look stunning in it (fuchsia is a good colour for you) but I liked the text part of this post even more. I completely agree with everything you said. If you don't dress up, it's not ok because you're sloppy and unfeminine; if you do dress up, you're slut shamed and labeled as an attention whore. You never know how much you should cover or show according to society. So I stopped caring about any of this shit and started wearing whatever the fuck I wanted; I was going to be criticized anyway, so, I might have as well put on something I liked.
    I loved this feminine discourse in your entry. I'd like to see more fashion bloggers follow your example :)

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  12. You're such a stylish women! xx

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  13. Loving this look,Absolutely gorgeous you are!!!here is my loved blog,i think

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  14. I totally agree with the last part!

    "I'm expected to honor an aesthetic wherein my "feminine qualities" like boobs, hips, and a butt are highlighted, otherwise I'm considered unattractive. And as a woman, my attractiveness is directly proportional to my worth as a human being. But then when I actually wear this shit out in public, I get slut-shamed for trying to draw attention to my body and appearance." is actually the best I've ever read in my entire life!

    People will judge whatever you are going to wear so I decided to just wear what I am most comfortable in. Btw you look absolutely stunning in that dress!

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  15. It is this type of interesting thing with this post of yours. I had been interested with all the topic along with the flow in the story. Keep up to date the truly amazing work.
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  16. omg tha dress is gorgeous and it looks amazing on you! I agree, everyone should be able to wear what they want. Other people should keep their noses out of it as they dont have to wear it so whats the problem?

    Hayley xx
    www.addictionstoshopping.blogspot.com

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  17. You look gorgeous, Bebe Zeva! Ultra feminine and powerful in appearance as you are powerful with your words.

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  21. beautiful as usual!
    Love the hot pink!

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  23. hey, i wanted to reply to your last part!

    i like to at least hope that i'm fairly sensitive to the concept of "femme" and what it means to me. i've had body image fights with myself to the point where i wanted to cut my breasts off, and i think it was a definite result of society's critique of my body. sometimes i would think that it would be better to have "masculine" features because, unfortunately, i thought i might be protected or have to apologize less for myself.
    in my current way of dressing and making my appearance, i've found that a femme look is something i really identify with and enjoy for myself. while i still have concern over how dangerous i appear, i have begun to realize that i can feel intimidating as a woman, and i feel more safe with that now. however, though i am more comfortable in femme, i think it's important to note that it is ohkay for a person to feel more comfortable as androgynous or otherwise if that's what they want. that's a lot of what feminism is to me.

    also, although i think i understand your comparison to a p.o.c.'s struggle, i think it's problematic to talk about those struggles like they do not overlap women's struggles. i think it especially undermines the women of color who get ignored while white women get more time to talk, you know? i do not deny that white women are oppressed, but WOMEN are oppressed, and that includes those of color. i'm not sure if i'm making myself clear, but that part did rub me the wrong way. maybe something to do a bit of research on? i'm hesitant to say much on that because i am not of color, and i could be saying something bad that i'm not aware of.

    anyway, i really appreciate that you talk about this. thank you.

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  26. Craving a new outfit post - sorry to be so shallow!

    Love your blog Bebe :)

    Eve & Faye x

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