If Clothes Could Talk

By Danielle Spitz, Guest Blogger

To begin class, my French teacher asked every student to stand in front of the classroom and describe what he/she was wearing. My friend was first, sporting ripped jeans, a tee shirt, and sneakers.  She could barely mutter “je porte un jean” before Madame interrupted to bring attention to the tightness of the jeans and shake her head while pointing at the rips at the knees. My friend stared at the floor and began to second-guess the confidence her outfit had given her when she put it on that morning.

I was up next, and judging by the fact that my outfit was practically identical to that of my friend’s, my future didn’t look too bright. I went through my ensemble as quickly as possible, especially when I got to my jeans, but still caught Madame pursing her lips disapprovingly in the corner of my eye. I rushed back to my seat and hoped that the next student would hurry to their turn.

The remaining students proceeded to describe their clothing in full, and Madame continued to make sly remarks on the lengths of skirts and the low cuts of shirts. Not once was a boy scrutinized for his outfit.

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After everyone had presented, Madame gave a quick lecture to conclude the exercise. She went on to tell us that although our clothes may be considered appropriate in America, us girls needed to pay closer attention to how we dressed in other countries, as to not imply certain things. The classroom went silent and the uncomfortable aura was suffocating 

I believe that Madame was just trying to look out for her students, but that doesn’t mean that I agree with her reasoning. What a girl wears should have absolutely no connection to her sexuality, nor provide an implication of her sexual behavior. Clothing is a way to express yourself and should never be worn in fear of being degraded or judged.

That being said, clothes should be worn to show your true colors. Still, clothes cannot actually speak and voice your opinions, which is something only you can do. Never allow someone to use your clothing as an explanation for anticipating your intentions before you have actually stated them yourself.

My motto has always been to dress for myself and no one else. While I do know that there is a right time and place to wear certain pieces in my wardrobe, I always choose what makes me feel comfortable and confident. Clothes are designed to make people feel good about themselves, which is why there is so much variety to choose from. Every time we put on clothing while thinking of how it will make someone else feel, we lose a piece of ourselves. Clothes reveal style and taste; never do they reveal personal values and standards.   

Let's chat! What does your wardrobe express about you as a person? What kinds of things cannot be discovered from looking at your clothes?

About Danielle

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High school student Danielle Spitz is an aspiring journalist. She writes for her school newspaper and of course IATG! She loves reading, writing, running, binge watching anything on Netflix, shopping, and contributing to a world in which women build each other up and receive the respect they deserve. 

 

 

 

 


image via myclothinghelper

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  • commented 2015-04-28 20:39:33 -0700
    I agree with your statements, “clothes should be worn to show your true colors. Still, clothes cannot actually speak and voice your opinions, which is something only you can do.”

    But you are disregarding how appearance works in human society when you state, “Never allow someone to use your clothing as an explanation for anticipating your intentions before you have actually stated them yourself.” We have no power to “allow” or “disallow” others to draw conclusions about who we are and what we think of ourselves by how we have chosen to dress.

    And if your appearance is not in harmony with your intentions, both personal and social, you are not “showing your true colors” and people will misjudge you. Because we ALL make judgments about a person’s social station, intentions and authority within a mere few seconds of perceiving them. Before they utter a word. Those are facts backed up by research. Madame is correct, as much as that feels confining or oppressive. Getting dressed is always in part about how others are going to perceive us. Getting dressed in an authentic way is about knowing exactly who we are and how we want to be perceived and understanding that it as much a choice as the words that come out of our mouth.

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