Thursday, June 3, 2010

Why I don't usually blog about style and body-image ...

Because body-image, feminism, and fashion can be really tricky subjects to discuss!* But I totally love reading other people's blogs about these subjects, and do so regularly. Sally McGraw's blog Already Pretty is one of my favorites - I love Sally's style and sass - and I read it regularly.  Earlier this week, I commented on her post about figure flattery. The way she and other commenters discussed "minimizing" or "de-emphasizing" certain body parts as part of their approach to flattery just made me feel a little sad - I love good style, and I love to see women in clothes that fit them and accentuate their best features, but I wish women didn't feel the need to constantly "minimize" or "de-emphasize" certain areas of their body in order to make them better conform to some kind of societal ideal (the tall and thin yet busty woman, or something like that).

Well, okay, my comment wasn't quite that articulate (it said something like, "um ... I dunno, but ..."), but that was the gist. Sally responded, and I responded back.

Sally thought my comment was interesting and wanted to open up further discussion on the topic, which can be found here.

Sally has some great insights, and points out that honestly assessing your body type can help you pick clothes that make you feel great about yourself. I totally agree! I also stick to my original point, which is that we need to be nice to ourselves and our bodies - in doing that, it's good to speak nicely to and of our bodies. Our bodies are lovely and serviceable and deserving of gratitude, even if they don't always fit the societal ideal. (Which, by the way, is a completely insane ideal, but that's a subject for another post!) I love it when a woman really "owns" her shape and revels in her body, especially when her body doesn't fit society's (totally arbitrary) ideal. That's awesome. Confidence is hot.

And now, back to our regularly scheduled program of gardening, cooking, bread-baking, and parenting, with occasional brief references to feminism and fashion!

*Also, I wear the same things all the time! I don't have the energy for a personal style blog, although I think they are super fun to read.


  1. Inder, I agree with your point. I know a lot of people love to hate What Not to Wear, but I think that show successfully hits upon the right tone when discussing women's bodies. They always talk in terms of assets when looking for the right fit and never, never degrade women or find fault with certain parts of their bodies. It may seem like a small difference to "bring attention to the shoulders" rather than "de-emphasize the backside," but the difference is big to me. Now that I am post-baby, I am going to be "emphaizing" a lot -- hopefully with joy instead of shame.

  2. Look, you're blog famous again! Oh, body image.


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