Is a fashion enthusiast who takes more time on selecting his pieces than wearing them. Also experiments and studies on fashion a lot.
Women wearing men suits or men wearing women clothes, common sights we see nowadays. Looks cool, chic, and flexible at the same time being the reason people wear those items besides its comfort. Masculine aura also sparks from a woman wearing men items and so does the opposite. That's why it's called androgynous fashion: A term describing women wearing men fashion items or the opposite. Its condition first invented in 1800s to show exclusivity such as the dress shown below.
History of Androgynous Fashion
Androgynous fashion didn't come from a teenager randomly mixed and matched fashion pieces like what kids do nowadays. That type of fashion was first out in 1800s when the aristocratic classes were required to be more flashy than other classes. This kind of style suited the best. With laces on the hands, this dress succesfully caught the attention of citizens. After men, women also experienced similar thing in different part. Women are required to wear boyish army trousers and uniforms due to military purposes.
After that, androgynous fashion became more and more popular since women felt the need to be comfort while doing regular activities. One example is a movement by Luisa Capetillo from Puerto Rico who showed in public wearing men's suit and tie.
Not only Capetillo, an advocate named Elizabeth Smith Miller even popularized it by turning it into masterpiece. Honestly, i don't view this design as the 'most androgynous style ever' but yeah, it's pretty much called androgynous that day by turning trouser into a woman's fashion piece. Here it was.
If you have ever seen Turkish styles, it looks like one. The touches she gave to the style was androgynous-modern with canvas-like materials and glossy materials so they created luxurious vibe. It caught citizens with the kind of look that caused women started wearing the type of set daily.
Music and Its Impacts
Besides personal movements brought by some people on its earliest development, there are some mass movemenets that was brought by famous people to influence it. We can't miss mentioning Elvis Presley's influence on androgynous fashion. We can see his fashion style with bling-blings, flashy embroideries here and there, and even applying it to himself which was shown by his androgynous makeup.
Because of his appearance, he shines forever since it's so unique that no one could ever replace him from people's hearts. He will be forever known as a stand-out superstar that places the hall of fame forever.
Besides Elvis, there was also a rockstar that promoted androgynous fashion, which was Mick Jagger, The Rolling Stones' main vocalist. He used such bling-bling equipments and feminine makeups that made him look more awesome.
He even literally used dress on his 1969 performance on Hyde Park which made him looked unique like this.
After that, music continued to influence citizens in 1970s brought by Jimi Hendrix that we know frequently used to wear women's blouses and high heels. The effect that musicians brought to people was like seeing your gold turns into golden ring. It's still the same, but more beautiful. That's why it becomes more valuable and people's interest on rings increases.
Musicians' fashion impact on its fans had even been proven by a research by Old Dominion University and it was proven right that celebrities influence people fashion choices.That's why people on 70s had such a flashy fashion style with men's glossy style of suits, women's rough jeans, mens' unbuttoned shirts, women's leather suits, etc. Thanks Mick, Jimi, and other great artists to promote such an out-of-the-box nuance in fashion. You will be in the hall of fame forever.
Social Movements in Androgynous Style
Mass social movements in androgynous style begun with the movement held by the father of androgynous fashion, Yohji Yamamoto in 1972. He had an idea that the combination of masculine and feminine characteristics into an ambiguous form should be celebrated in fashion. In other words, people who have bi-tendencies should be appreciated and translated into fashion trends. That's why he made gothic suits no matter the sex is. In his first collection, he focused on showing women clothes with typical men's garment in the form of clothes cut in uncluttered shapes with washed fabrics and dark colors.
After that, androgynous social movement was done by Annie Lenox in 1980's to show girls' power which was absolutely succesful. Many women followed her fashion style to show that they were not in a lower level than men in term of power. In 1984, Vogue posted an article titled "The Menswear Phenomenon" by Kathleen Beckett which contained androgynous fashion on women and that it showed the equality of men and women in term of work life. It showed impression that women were forced to tailor their wardrobes to enter manly jobs. Women then begun to realize that they could attract men by their mental beauty, not only physical. Then androgynous fashion became more and more popular, so popular that androgynous fashion on women were brought to wide screens via "Working Girl" that brought power dressing as the main topic.
Androgynous fashion then was developed greatly either for men or women until nowadays we can see androgynous fashioned men or women around us so easily that every kilometer, there is at least one of them.
Benefits of Androgynous Fashion Wearing
If you have ever thought about not wearing unisex fashion items, you should consider it since the benefits brought by wearing androgynous fashion items are many. Here are them:
Makes You More Tolerance
Nowadays, androgynous people around us have been felt so normal while actually there are still some people who haven't been able to tolerate it. Wearing androgynous fashion items makes you feel what they feel and by routining them, you can start to feel that it's just a fashion and/or personality tendency, nothing more than that. Being that kind of person doesn't always mean that they are not their own gender. Being that kind of person doesn't mean they will hurt anybody and it's their business to wear what they want to and it's good.
Makes Your Wallet Happier
Imagine if you can wear everything in the world, no matter what the gender is. You can rock leather suits or dresses. You can wear everything everywhere. If you do it, you can just borrow your family's clothes and rock it with peace so that you don't need to spend that much on fashion. Assuming that a pair of top and bottom costs you around $100 and you need to change it at least once a month. That means you can allocate your $100 on something more important, such as stocks, cryptos, businesses, or saving.
Freedom of Expression Makes You More Creative
Creativity is a form of ability to create new things from the known but new or the unknown. To make innovative things, we need to be open to the world to gain more ideas. If you do that to fashion, your creativity on fashion will boosts. You will gain more ideas on designing or mix and matching your collection and that's why we need to try to wear androgynous clothings to gain that masculine or feminine touch experience in order to apply it in our designs or our everyday life.
Those are the major parts of androgynous fashion. Are you interested in trying it someday? Or you have ever applied it?
© 2022 Mohammad Robbani Ardyanto