I was so honoured to attend this event that was held at The W Hotel in Leicester Square this week. The event was a “Queer Me Out” panel discussion and the topic was ‘The Gender Fluid Fashion Revolution’. This is such an important topic and in today’s society needs to be addressed a lot more because I personally feel Fashion is an expression of who you are and it’s what you display to the world every single day. Being gay for example is something you have to say to make known to the world but your sexual preference is not really anyone’s business unless you choose to disclose it but Fashion is something you physically see and is the instant and initial statement of who you are as well as a way to express your individuality.
The panel was made up of the most inspiring and passionate people I have ever come across in my life. The discussion was led by Tag Warner who is the CEO of the global media company and publisher Gay Times. The panel was then made up of 3 sensationally talented people - Kyle De’volle (Fashion stylist, creative director & designer), Jamie Windust (non-binary model, LQBT+ activist & Journalist), and Naeem Davis (Co-Founder of BBZ London, all-inclusive collective for queer, trans and intersexed people of colour). This panel was the perfect voices to have for this topic because they all had the same long term vision and goal for this movement but they all approached it from a different angle and perspective. Tag asked such relevant questions to the panel and they all discussed so freely how to achieve a truly gender fluid fashion revolution.
They aren't 'just clothes'
Style to me always makes me think back to how you are automatically placed in friendshiip groups in school because of how you are dressed, or how the class system has an association with style, even your profession can have an attire so for people to say 'it’s just clothes' is completely wrong. For as far back in time as we can go fashion, style, and clothing has always been a major movement. When I am all dolled up and in my newest put together outfit friends often comment and say how I put too much energy into getting ready and they couldn’t be bothered to make such effort or that they have no interest in style or statement – well honey you are wrong coz that right there and what you are wearing is a statement and you may think its effortless or that you aren’t saying anything with your clothes but you actually are! You are instantly portraying a reflection of who you are as an individual and making a fashion statement by not making a fashion statement! #Comprende?
'Fashion has no limits' – eh lies!
Every designer and fashion enthusiast proclaims the statement that fashion has no limits but when you look at this topic this proves that it actually does. According to society you can wear whatever you like so long as it’s an item assigned to your gender otherwise it is not appropriate and considered as drag or a costume. If you really think about it only in the last decade straight men confidently and comfortably started wear Pink or Lemon, why? Because someone decided that those were gender assigned colours. Pink for a baby girl and blue for a baby boy. If a man wears heels or a skirt he will be judged by the majority or onlookers and not just be called Gay but the word Fag will be heard. Just like if a girl shaves her head and wears shapeless clothing designed for men she won’t just be called a lesbian but the work Dyke will come into play. So yes Fashion has no limits but there is definitely a line drawn and if you decide to cross it then you are branded with words and vulgar descriptions instead of your statement being seen or expression of individuality being noticed.
Who decided this? Who is this Bitch?
I’d like to know who decided the gender assignment and when exactly did it divide because if you look back in history especially British history the men also wore heels, wigs, and makeup. The men’s heel height was no different to the women’s, the makeup was simply what we now know as the Victorian beauty look, and the wigs were giant curls with no style or cut assigned to either gender. A divide happened somewhere and yes I understand that there are two genders (that’s just biology) but the assignment of objects to a specific gender that was a choice made by mankind. There is a divide but the divide is man made and just what you are taught from an early age. For instance, when a child is playing they don’t choose a toy that its specifically for them they pick up whatever they want to play with but it’s an adult who shamefully will say ‘you can’t play with that toy it’s for girls’ so that is where the child then begins to identify objects with gender because they are shamed into thinking that way.
Take away the assignment
Last night while at this event I found myself looking at the clothing and looks that each panellist wore and found myself to be completely mesmerised because I looked beyond the assignment and saw the fashion and looks for what they were. Kyle was wearing a black and gold jumpsuit that was very low cut with and he just looked so stylish and sexy as the outfit showed off his incredible shape, his flawless skin, and the jumpsuit complemented his entire person as a whole because he is tall so the clothing wasn’t just been worn it was on display. Naeem wore a white tracksuit with trainers and seriously all I could think was that I would do anything to be able to wear something that comfortable and have such swag and street style, like Naeem pulls this off so well all of the time because the look is flawless with beautiful dark skin and shaved blonde. This this look could not be more gender fluid but it really is how you do it as you that will make it work. Jamie’s outfit was a midi length skirt, a high neck blouse, yellow boot stilettos, and all pulled together with Jamie’s signature high fashion runway like makeup – Jamie could not have looked any more elegant or poised in his clothing like he truly looked so beautiful and sophisticated to a point where I was completely thrown off my train of thought and left wondering then why a a lot of complimentary words are also assigned to gender? SHE is beautiful – HE is handsome – SHE is pretty – HE is dapper – SHE has poise – HE looks smart. I don’t care how out of context I might sound to society but Jamie looked Poised last night, Kyle looked beautiful, and Naeem had pure swag and also looked pretty! Did the world just implode from me saying that? Nah!
It evolves with you and me!
I am by no means a good example for dressing bold or out of gender assignment because I love the clothing that has been assigned to females but I have jackets, jumpers, t-shirts, and joggers that I have bought from the men’s section. I am fully aware that men on this topic have it harder because women have already won the fight to wear trousers but men have not won theirs to wear dresses. I know if I go outside wearing men’s clothing that it won’t have much of an impact or judgement maybe a few comments would be said like Oh I bet shed be nice dressed up but I feel that’s where a woman’s struggle is that it’s in our heads that we should always look our best, wear makeup, have long luscious locks but the truth behind it all is that we really can do or wear whatever the F**k we want and until we all do and all stop judging and assuming based on dress sense then nothing will ever change and we will remain fashion prudes forever. As I said earlier fashion is a statement and an expression - so use it! There are no limits or rules unless you allow someone say there is! So when you wake up tomorrow and you as a man decide that you wanna wear heels today or you as a woman decide that you wanna be make up free and wear clothes not tailored for a woman then just do it! The same way if you are a man who loves to wear a suit or a woman like me who loves to wear her heels and dresses then so be it. Wear what you want and express yourself in your way because the second we do it for ourselves is when it eventually spreads into the minds of others, and then that little boy with the Barbie won’t be made feel shamed and that little girl with the football won’t be forced to be part of a world she’s expected to be in. Even when the battle is won there will always be small minded people who refuse to change their way of thinking but if we all start accepting people for who they are and how they want to be then eventually those small minded people - THEY will become the minority.
Stay Boujee xx