Monday, September 22, 2008

Skirting The Issue: Fashion and Fetish

When I lived in Seattle, I shaved my head several times (you can check out my crazy self portraits from that period on DeviantArt) but once I started letting it grow back in, a friend suggested I go for the hair-do Mia Farrow had in Rosemary's Baby. I hadn't seen the flick before but after she showed me a picture of Mia, I instantly loved her look and checked out Rosemary's Baby to see her stuff. I completely worshiped her style after seeing it in all it's completely adorable glory:
I don't know about you, but to me her whole look here is about adorable innocence, easy confidence, fricken cuteness and joy. So since I've been working to create a more professional wardrobe this year, what with having my first "real" job and having to replace 90% of my clothes because of all the yoga and subsequent weight loss/toning, I've been doing so with this idea of femininity in my mind. Here are a few of my dresses that remind me of this look of Mia's, mostly because of their cut:

I'm sure you're all fascinated but are probably wondering, "May, why the hell should I care?" Well I'm gonna tell you. The reason I bring all this up is to underline the fact that when I'm walking around, looking cute and innocent-like, the very last thing I expect or want is to be sexually harassed by a stranger. But it happens all the time and I recently noticed - almost ONLY when I am wearing either a skirt or a dress. Shorts and pants seem to take me entirely off of any sort of sexy radar... at least, according to the crap I hear from morons.

Once I realized that the other day I started wondering: are skirts and dresses suddenly fetish items only and no one told me? Is it impossible for someone to see a chick dressed girly and not think immediately of one of these?:

And, if so, how the hell did we come so far that the "traditional" women's clothes are all of a sudden fetishized? Why am I constantly being bombarded with the message that I'm "asking for it" just because I want to look and feel girly?

I totally do not get it. What do you think?

Related posts:
Sex and Fashion
You're Mamma Shoulda Told You: Don't Treat All Women Like Hookers
Bratz: Hos or Positive Role Models
Anti-"Sex and the City" Meme

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Joe Pontillo said...

My completely unresearched and uneducated guess would be that hetero men miss, or don't know they miss, clothes designed to accentuate the feminine. The fashion industry continues to push feminine dress to its cartoonishly stylized extremes, while women commonly wear unisex clothing that triggers no biochemical response. So now when a guy sees a woman wearing a dress or skirt, two things come to mind:
1, heightened, sexualized fashions seen in all media, intended to titillate
and 2, "special occasion" nights which frequently end in getting some.
Not that this is an excuse. But these factors can easily create a Pavlovian reflex that results in thoughts that any woman walking around in a skirt or dress is on the prowl.

Plus... easy access. What, just me?

By the way, I LOVE "Rosemary's Baby." Not particularly because of Mia Farrow's style in it, but because it's FUCKING BRILLIANT. All the best horror movies are about fear of femininity. Strange, huh?

Dagbert said...

Seeing as it's hard to wrap sexy, intelligent, and classy into a single package, Mia Farrow wins at everything.

Definitely stick with that.

Anonymous said...

I love that photo girl with the bike...
Latex Fetish,Rubber Fetish