With my mind set on the ever-relevant issue of feminism and the expression of it, I often try to stir the way I dress to help me express that cause. But it wasn’t always like that. There once was a time when the everyday news wasn’t bombarded by who wore what, which 9 trends to follow for a perfect fall look with women spending hours every morning to achieve it, and why Vogue’s editor-in-chief didn’t use a woman of color for his second cover. There was a time when women did not hide behind their screens, went out to voice their views and the clothes they wore, were another means of expression. Deirdre Clemente, historian of 20th century American fashion: “I always stress to my students that clothing trends aren’t ‘reflective’ of change, but rather constitutive of change. So women didn’t say ‘Hey I’m sexually liberated, I need to go get a mini-skirt.’ Rather in wearing the mini-skirt they live out the identity that they are. Clothing is not reactive but pro active.” Clothes say it first, and the movement follows.
This is a story of how feminism was manifested and embedded into the social life of women through clothing, in vast co-relation with the social background of each decade, starting from the 20th century. This perspective is crucial because clothing is an aggregation of costume pieces and each costume piece is a testimony of a historic event or situation, as Quicherat, Demay and Enlart, philosophers of the 19th century reflected and wrote on that matter.