If you haven't been keeping up with me, you may not know:
I'm smitten with menswear.
I remember buying my first men's shirt from the sale section at J.Crew when I was in middle school.
Since then, I've toyed with menswear on and off—always feeling extremely drawn to the style, but never fully understanding how to present as a woman in men's clothing.
We live in a society that likes to gender everything.
From the toys we play with as kids, to our clothes, to our roles in relationships, to the freaking pens we use. #BicForHer #WTF
Gender is a funny thing. Have you ever asked your friends or family what they would do if they woke up in a body of the opposite sex? Taylor and I have this conversation all the time and our reactions are always so different. She responds with something along the lines of, "I would freak out. I so identify with being a woman. I would not feel like myself if I woke up as a man."
But it's never been something that I can relate to. I remember the first time I told her, "I'd be surprised and freaked out at the shock of it all, but I would be okay. I don't necessarily identify strongly with my gender as a female." We laugh together at how incredibly different we are, while often feeling like we are so much the same.
When we were kids, Taylor had a pink room. It was her favorite color. Mine was blue. I hated playing Barbies with her and remember passionately explaining to my mom that I was a tomboy. (As if she didn't know—ha!)
In early middle school, I had an impressive collection of chunky Vans sneakers and wanted to learn how to skateboard. The only souvenir I wanted from a trip to New York City was a flat billed snapback. I had no interest in heels and wore t-shirts just about everyday. I (embarrassingly) loved the smell of Axe body spray that middle school boys overused after gym class and quietly wondered why women's scents were never quite as intriguing.
The older I got, the more I began to embrace my femininity and subscribed to most of the gendering that our culture so strongly promotes. While I definitely posses many traits that are traditionally considered feminine, there are other aspects of my personality and expression that have been somewhat repressed by a society that heavily gender assigns.
As I am learning more about gender and how it is often restricting to our self-expression, I've felt more encouraged to experiment with a style that is reflective of my personality and the fluidity of my gender identity.
And I'm going to document it on this blog.
As a thanks to the women whose blogs and Instagram accounts I've stalked for months, I want to encourage others to feel free to present themselves however they feel on any particular day. Developing a sense of style that is true to who I am has made me feel more me than I ever have.
Shirt: Men's Small - Pants: Women's Size 6 - Shoes: Women's Size 9.5
This past weekend, Taylor and I had a couple of concerts in Weeki Wachee, Florida and let me tell you—this little hideaway was a DREAM. With fall quickly approaching, I'm soaking up every last opportunity to indulge in tropical prints while still giving autumn a polite nod by pairing the print with a plum/burgundy chino.
I found these chinos in the women's section at Gap after failing to find this style pant in the men's section. I loved them so much I bought them in two colors. I pin-rolled the pant leg so it hugs about two to three inches above my ankle. I contemplated between two different sizes, but am happy I chose to go with the smaller one since they stretch out a good amount with wear.
Luckily these sneakers are fairly gender neutral because I'm pretty sure DSW doesn't carry men's shoes below a size 8 (I'm a size 7). I thought I might be okay shopping for men's shoes since I have big feet for a woman, but if I want to shop in stores I'm usually restricted to the kids section. Which isn't always a terrible thing—they're usually less expensive—but there are also less options!
I'll be including my sizes in these "menswear for women" blog posts as a reference point for anyone trying to figure out how women's sizing translates in men's fashion. When I decided to fully embrace the menswear look, I spent hours googling what sizes might fit me in men's and boy's clothes. This is the most helpful article I came across in my research: Boys and Menswear Sizing. I realize not everyone reading this is going to be my size, but I hope it helps take a little of the guesswork out!