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05 February 2014

Why are suits for men?

#teenvogue // ASOS coat and trousers (similar), CATZARI hat via ASOS (here), JIL SANDER bag, ZARA loafers (similar on sale), H&M faux collar, COS jumper (similar)

In reference to the title, I realize I'm not wearing a suit per se, but my point still stands. Why do we deem certain things masculine/ feminine? John Stuart Mill wrote, “so true is that unnatural generally means only uncustomary, and that everything which is usual appears natural.” I think this point becomes startlingly relevant when looking at fashion; tailoring, suits, loafers etc are only deemed masculine because usually men wear them. Similarly: heels, dresses and skirts are feminine because women wear them. We have ingrained ideas of what each gender should look like; perhaps it's just me who finds that problematic.

As someone who sees the fashion industry as one of the few areas where total gender equality is possible, this irks me. How can you define something as masculine or feminine when it is worn by both sexes? The exception disproves the rule. By pigeon holing clothing styles you make discrimination more prevalent; you set the expectation for what people should wear, when in reality fashion is about expressing yourself, not your gender. As soon as you deem something 'feminine', you define who ought to be wearing it when in reality we should be free to define ourselves without being held back or criticized because of preconceived ideas. A man in a skirt is simply that. What is a woman in a suit? Nothing more than a woman in a suit. By not setting expectations, you remove the limits on what it means to be a woman or a man; fashion becomes a medium whereby people can have complete freedom over their own identity in a way that is unique. You are a man because you are a man, you are a woman because you are a woman; your clothing choices have no say in the matter, it all comes down to personal perception.

Never mind that all of a sudden our shopping horizons become twice as big, which couldn't possibly be a bad thing.


38 comments:

  1. Lovely photos and amazing edit

    XO CHAMA FASHION
    www.chamafashion.com

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  2. Loving the last picture, it's so pretty!

    laceandpearlsbyroos.com

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  3. Amazing look & pics. But best of all the editorial … loved reading it & agree. I think we should challenge ourselves more on things like breaking gender conventions when it comes to fashion. I love seeing women wear more typically masculine styles.

    Mel x
    http://www.mediamarmalade.com

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  4. I think it's much easier for women to wear menswear. I love the shirts in Topman! It's a shame that the gender binary is still so prevalent in fashion when it comes to skirts and dresses. It makes it seem like for a guy to be feminine is a bad thing because femininity is weak or whatever which is ridiculous and patriarchal. Sometimes there is more variation on the catwalk and in more ~artsy cities but it might be a while before androgynous style is more of a norm :(

    http://prettypassionsfinefashions.blogspot.co.uk

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  5. You look amazing! Love your hat. Your insights never cease to impress me - they always manage to get me thinking. I totally agree with your point, although I think that it could lead to a serious shopping meltdown with the vast amount of choices from men's and women's selection! xo
    http://noise-and-confusionn.blogspot.co.uk/

    http://noise-and-confusionn.blogspot.co.uk/

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  6. so cool
    love the coat!
    very nice winter look!!

    <3
    http://therubberdoll.com/

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  7. Amen sister!

    afashionation.blogspot.co.uk

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  8. I think the majority of my wardrobe comes from the men's departments! The fit is just nicer on me, the styles fit in with my lifestyle more and I just prefer the overall look. That's how I think people should shop rather than choosing things based on their gender! I think it's becoming more 'acceptable' to buy clothes meant for your opposite gender but there's still a long way to go.
    By the way, looking amazing as always! Loving that hat on you xxx

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  9. Completely agree with you! Although I find women tend to have it a lot easier- we could wear a suit and we could practically go unnoticed, a man in a skirt however would possibly raise a few eyebrows?
    You look amazing as per usual!

    xx

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  10. love the quote. i completely agree with you too,
    loving the jewellery xx
    www.thefrillseekers.blogspot.com

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  11. I am SO obsessed with that jacket! You look stunning xo

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  12. i think simply lot of pieces come from men closet !! and its hell good !! we all love it dont we

    http://franchemeetsfashion.blogspot.cz/

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  13. Beautiful coat! You really know how to wear black!

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  14. Love this post and the leather pants are stunning!

    http://www.fashion-hooked.blogspot.com

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  15. Really thoughtful post. I think menswear as womenswear has definitely become a lot more accepted as time goes on, especially as loafers and "boyfriend" style clothes are trending all over the place. I guess the same can't be said for womenswear as menswear though! But that would definitely take a lot more time, I think.

    x Michelle | thefeatherden.net

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  16. That's one reason (of the few) that American Apparel's pretty good, most of their clothing is sold as unisex.

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  17. You look amazing! Love the background too
    Lucia's Loves
    x

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  18. You've put gender equality with fashion so well Camilla. I love it! You should be like an advocate or something with how well it you've put it and I completely 100% agree with what you said. Fashion should be just self expression and not a way to determine our gender.
    Anyway, I also love this outfit, it's stylish and chic <3

    http://amelodyofdiaries.blogspot.co.uk/

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  19. This is why you're one of my favourite bloggers! Love the outfit, we should be able to wear whatever we want, you are an amazing writer keep doing what you do X

    http://istylethereforeiiwear.blogspot.com/

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  20. Love this look and your story! Totally as how it is.

    XX Nora / 1310bynora.com

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  21. Here here! And that is why androgyny is my number 1 trend. I love doing it like a dude per se. Ah and that coat is just everything! Beautiful post! Xo
    stylegrande.blogspot.com

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  22. You're right. Equality just seems to be a tricky thing for humans.

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  23. I really agree with your points, and JS Mill, and it's always worth saying again. I think that it is one of the few areas where men are more limited than women though. I think it's because for women a lot of the time dressing is a kind of performing, taking on different roles or styles. Guys are often only reinforcing their masculinity through clothes and have way less flexibility. The thing about guys in dresses/skirts is interesting because it so often seems to be 'cross dressing', but women in trousers are just their trousers. It's why I like that clip of Eddie Izzard where an interviewer asks him about why he wear's 'women's dresses'. And he replies, "I don't wear women's dresses, their my dresses. I bought them". I think we should challenge the idea that wearing a dress is dressing to be a woman, or a girl wearing a waistcoat is being a tomboy. We can all look damn fine in what we like.

    And after that too long comment, I will also add that you look very grand in that gorgeous coat!

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  24. So right! I am loving the jewels! Xoxo

    Www.satinandsouffles.com

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  25. Gorgeous! Love the coat!
    http://trendenciesblog.wordpress.com
    https://www.bloglovin.com/blog/11447055/trendencies

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  26. Beautiful, love these pictures Camilla, your outfit is so chic. And I agree, a man in a suit is a man in a suit and a woman in a suit is a woman in a suit. And we have Yves Saint Laurent to thank for being a pioneer and introducing the tuxedo to women. ;)


    xxx
    Claudia
    http://pink-manolos.blogspot.com

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  27. I love the backdrop of your photos! You blog posts are always so well written!

    www.lestage2012.blogspot.com

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  28. Great shots. Love how the twisted vines look almost like marble!
    xx,
    The Marcy Stop

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  29. I think its easy for a women to wear menswear,

    http://fsession.com

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  30. Such a beautiful wall, I need to go to this place! Great styling, photography and writing too...as usual :)

    Allanah
    www.takeovergirl.blogspot.com

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  31. I love this outfit, and the bag is to die for!

    www.maisieivy.com

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  32. I couldn't agree more...and what's more? You look amazing<3

    http://mymagic-fashion.blogspot.cz

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  33. all black wow! you look gorgeous and classy love the outfit. Visit our site

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