Fashion has been a constant in my life since I was old enough to dress myself (or maybe even before – my grandma used to always tell me about the phase I had where I would only let people dress me in pink). But it’s meaning to me has changed significantly throughout my life. I can remember the moment in my freshman year of high school when I decided to stop dressing for myself and instead dressing “hot” so boys would like me. I can remember how much my life changed when I gained weight in college and officially became plus sized. And I definitely remember the freeing feeling of coming out as a lesbian and knowing I could finally present to the world the way I felt inside.
Since coming out, I’ve redefined femininity and what it means for me. That tends to happen once you let go of heteronormative culture. While I do identify as femme and relate to womanhood in some ways, I have a very different connection to it. In terms of fashion, I relate more to vintage feminine style than modern. I feel closer to 80’s/90’s female pop culture icons (Miss Honey from Matilda, Chessy from The Parent Trap, Roxanne from A Goofy Movie and no I’m not kidding about that one) than any Kardashian. I also truly understand that fashion is genderless – taking the gender out of clothing is something we need to work towards as a society (more on that from Sotela this summer!). My partner is non-binary and prefers masculine clothing, while I prefer a mix of both masculine and feminine. We share clothes and don’t worry or care about what section they came from.
The queer experience is being forced to hide parts of yourself until you feel comfortable enough to share it with society. That includes dressing in a way that matches how you feel inside. My hope is one day that won’t be the societal default. No matter where you are in your journey, no matter how much you feel comfortable sharing with the world – you are special and loved.
Happy Pride from me and the entire Sotela team!
Social Media Coordinator
5 LGBTQIA+ Instagram Accounts You Should Be Following:
@laurenmarigold — Me!!! 😉 If you’re looking for plus size fashion, interiors, and queer couple content, I’ve got it for you.
@mattxiv — Matt shares queer truths in the most aesthetically pleasing way. It’s likely you’ve already seen one of their posts circulating Instagram this Pride month.
@trevorproject — The Trevor Project is a cause that means so much to me. LGBTQIA+ mental health should be accessible and available, and The Trevor Project makes that possible.