"Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Discussion of fashion elements and looks that are traditionally considered somewhat "femme" but are presented in a masculine context. This is NOT about transvestism or crossdressing.
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Coder
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"Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Coder »

I put this here because it's more of a general fashion "question". Lately as I attend zoom meetings, I tend to look at how the participants are dressed. They fall into two distinct categories:

Men: Polo, Button up, T-shirt
Women: Infinite variety

I've complained about this here, as have others. But what bugged me about it most is - why don't guys question this? Or conversely, why does fashion tend to be a women's endeavor? Granted they make expensive "stylish" clothes for men, but they are all the same variations on the same.

I'm not even talking frilly/flowery stuff, or "feminine" colors.

Anyhow, just thought I'd throw this up here. Why do men not make their own path, try new things? I know why I don't, but I feel like if every guy felt the same as me, you'd see the needle move a lot more than it is doing.
Freedomforall
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Freedomforall »

I ponder this subject quite a bit myself. We were in a store not long ago and the Fall fashions were on display. It was very disticnt on which department was the ladie's versus the men's. The men's had so many grays and browns that the entire area was overcome with the drab colors. I felt like I was in a funeral home. The women's department appeared alive and blooming with color.

I think it can be attributed to the way some men are programed to believe that colors are not masculine. Mainstream stores sell for the masses, so not everyone is included in this very limited way of thinking. I noticed this some 45 years ago in my school days. The girls always dressed bright and cheery. The boys were clad in blues, grays, and browns. Any boy who chose to abort the norm and clad himself in color was quickly teased and shunned by the other boys.
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denimini
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by denimini »

The term "fashion" infers a popular choice and something that is deemed as currently acceptable to others. Most people create a personal style from those current fashionable items. Women have a far greater pallet to work from and men have far less within what is fashionable. The alternative for men is to create a wider pallet from items that are not considered fashionable, which is what we are doing and people like Michael Portillo with his bright colours.
Apart from comfort, skirts are a bit lost on zoom meetings, although one could be a bit perverse and wear a suit top with a pink tutu and no-one would know, unless something went wrong like that Lawyer with the cat filter stuck on a zoom meeting.
Anthony, a denim miniskirt wearer in Outback Australia
Ralph
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Ralph »

Sometimes I prowl around Quora looking for questions regarding men wearing skirts and dresses, and the other day someone (from the context, I assume male) wanted to know how to appear more feminine.

The answers that followed ended up exploring the side question of what exactly femininity looks like. No two people had the same views on that, and many of the answers reflect outdated stereotypes that were considered society's standards for the sexes. Remember, I'm just the reporter here: These are the answers provided by the vast swarms of humanity from all walks of life. To them, femininity means:
  • More interested in appearance - hence use of makeup, jewelry, attractive clothing, brighter colours
  • Projecting an air of fragility/delicacy: soft-spoken, less aggressive stride and posture, clothes that are more decorative than functional (ruffles, bows, etc.)
  • More emotionally expressive
  • Less assertive behaviour
That's a sad commentary both on how weak society still expects women to be and how drab society still expects men to be.
Ralph!
Coder
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Coder »

denimini wrote:
Fri Aug 27, 2021 11:40 am
The term "fashion" infers a popular choice and something that is deemed as currently acceptable to others. Most people create a personal style from those current fashionable items. Women have a far greater pallet to work from and men have far less within what is fashionable. The alternative for men is to create a wider pallet from items that are not considered fashionable, which is what we are doing and people like Michael Portillo with his bright colours.
Yep! I cringe sometimes when I think what I'm doing is "fashion" for these very reasons.
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Big and Bashful »

Ralph wrote:
Fri Aug 27, 2021 8:11 pm
Sometimes I prowl around Quora looking for questions regarding men wearing skirts and dresses, and the other day someone (from the context, I assume male) wanted to know how to appear more feminine.

The answers that followed ended up exploring the side question of what exactly femininity looks like. No two people had the same views on that, and many of the answers reflect outdated stereotypes that were considered society's standards for the sexes. Remember, I'm just the reporter here: These are the answers provided by the vast swarms of humanity from all walks of life. To them, femininity means:
  • More interested in appearance - hence use of makeup, jewelry, attractive clothing, brighter colours
  • Projecting an air of fragility/delicacy: soft-spoken, less aggressive stride and posture, clothes that are more decorative than functional (ruffles, bows, etc.)
  • More emotionally expressive
  • Less assertive behaviour
That's a sad commentary both on how weak society still expects women to be and how drab society still expects men to be.
Hmmm, where do I fit in?
Interested in appearance? No interest and never tried makeup, Never worn and have never owned any jewelry, attractive clothing- what's that? bright colours, erm, no.
Air of fragility etc. As a heavily built 6 foot 3 inch bearded male, that just wouldn't look right, the gorilla in a tutu look?
More emotionally expressive? I don't know what that would look like and I have always concealed my emotions as much as I could, probably because my Father was the same and erm, I am British. If I show an emotion it is normally either rage or laughter.
Less assertive behaviour? erm, nope, no idea.
I am the God of Hellfire! and I bring you truffles!
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JeffB1959
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by JeffB1959 »

Ralph wrote:
Fri Aug 27, 2021 8:11 pm
Sometimes I prowl around Quora looking for questions regarding men wearing skirts and dresses, and the other day someone (from the context, I assume male) wanted to know how to appear more feminine.

The answers that followed ended up exploring the side question of what exactly femininity looks like. No two people had the same views on that, and many of the answers reflect outdated stereotypes that were considered society's standards for the sexes. Remember, I'm just the reporter here: These are the answers provided by the vast swarms of humanity from all walks of life. To them, femininity means:
  • More interested in appearance - hence use of makeup, jewelry, attractive clothing, brighter colours
  • Projecting an air of fragility/delicacy: soft-spoken, less aggressive stride and posture, clothes that are more decorative than functional (ruffles, bows, etc.)
  • More emotionally expressive
  • Less assertive behaviour
That's a sad commentary both on how weak society still expects women to be and how drab society still expects men to be.
Hmm! Let's see:

Interested in appearance: No makeup, but I have dabbled with lipstick from time to time, though not at all since the pandemic began as it's useless with masks. As for jewelry, I don't feel fully dressed without earrings and necklaces. Attractive clothing? Not quite, I opt more for casual styles. Brighter colors? Yes.

Fragility/delicacy? No. My clothing is more functional than decorative.

More emotionally expressive? No.

Less assertive behavior? No.
I don't want to LOOK like a woman, I just want to DRESS like a woman.
Coder
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Coder »

Heh:

https://www.kohls.com/product/prd-38746 ... r-oven.jsp

Why link to a Kohls (department store in the US) advertisement? I thought the set of advertising photos listed were kinda funny in regards to what we are discussing. Check out the photos - male in blue shirt / woman in pink shirt. Doing exactly the same thing. I suspect Ninja gives out sets of photos of different models doing the same things and lets retailers decide which photos to use, seems like the web department at Kohls just said "meh" and used them all.
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by rivegauche »

I was in the fashion store Reiss in Edinburgh last week. Upstairs, the men's department was black and grey and boring. I did not linger, Downstairs in ladieswear there was colour and more colour. I tried on and bought a glorious teal dress. There was no teal upstairs. I own and wear male teal clothes including trousers abut such clothes are hard to come by. There is no need to go the whole Michael Portillo - just move away from the boring. If you want to wear frills, then wear them. Personally I hate the things. Embracing women's clothes need not mean embracing femininity and most men would not know what that felt like anyway. Clothes do not have gender - people do - and until we accept this the barriers will remain. So get out there and vary, people.
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by r.m.anderson »

Coder wrote:
Sat Aug 28, 2021 4:52 pm
Heh:

https://www.kohls.com/product/prd-38746 ... r-oven.jsp

Why link to a Kohls (department store in the US) advertisement? I thought the set of advertising photos listed were kinda funny in regards to what we are discussing. Check out the photos - male in blue shirt / woman in pink shirt. Doing exactly the same thing. I suspect Ninja gives out sets of photos of different models doing the same things and lets retailers decide which photos to use, seems like the web department at Kohls just said "meh" and used them all.
LINK; - leads to: Ninja Foodi Digital Air Fryer Oven ???
"Kilt-On" -or- as the case may be "Skirt-On" !
WHY ?
Isn't wearing a kilt enough?
Well a skirt will do in a pinch!
Make mine short and don't you dare think of pinching there !
Coder
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Coder »

rivegauche wrote:
Sat Aug 28, 2021 11:06 pm
Clothes do not have gender - people do - and until we accept this the barriers will remain. So get out there and vary, people.
Amen!
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Keildersoul »

Hi folks.

Bear in mind in all of this that I have the appearance of a flank forward with curves! And that skirts are my everyday wear. I wear earth colours, shop on both sided of the aisle and will create my individuality by adding a splash of a "feminine" colour as an accessory or a shirt or by dying my beard. That said, the beard is now white, so it goes with everything. A beard dyed yellow gains more reaction than a mid thigh skirt I can tell you!
It is possible to add flair, personality, fashion and femininity to dark colours. You just need the will to do it. Try it, it is fun!!!
Love, peace and health

Jenni x
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Re: "Fashion Variability" in Mens/women's fashion

Post by Pdxfashionpioneer »

To add one more point to the question Coder posed, look at the history of men's fashions.

Nearly every change was made as a response to military necessity. Perhaps the most long-lasting was the industrialization of warfare that began in the US Civil War, which created the modern reality of Total War. That is, mass mobilization of people and industry to force the opposing nation into surrender or total annihilation.

If you're going to mobilize masses of new recruits, you need to cloth them in matching uniforms so that through the literal and figurative fog of war your soldiers can quickly, easily and accurately tell friend from foe. One good outcome of this was the standardization and reliability of sizing in menswear.

These mass mobilizations occurred twice in 25 years; beginning in 1914 for WWI and again in 1939 for WWII. At the end of hostilities in 1945, draftees all over the world gladly traded their military wardrobes for their work wardrobes.

So why didn't same thing happen in womenswear? Probably because 1) women weren't called up in the same numbers of men and 2) the practice of handmaking womenswear and the accompanying variety lasted much longer in womenswear than men's. So the challenge in womenswear became how to standardize looks enough to support mass production while retaining enough of the variety and ornamentation that women had come to expect. It didn't come easy.
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Social norms aren't changed by Congress or Parliament; they're changed by a sufficient number of people ignoring the existing ones and publicly practicing new ones.
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