The idea of gender neutral dressing began not so long ago. Sure, girls have always stolen their boyfriend’s t-shirts and sweaters for years, but for some reason society always frowned upon women buying men’s pieces and vice versa. The people who invented this style, were the Scandinavians, with their minimalist aesthetic that allows one to mistake somebody for a boy or a girl, genderless, just doing their own thing. The trendy Scandinavians have spread their ideals of gender freedom to the world, and now, cultures and brands are finally beginning to adapt.
In 2020, we are finding ourselves in a new definition of gender neutral dressing. This new definition is all about embracement, freedom, and equality.
There are a few easy ways you can begin investing and experimenting with gender neutral dressing. Don’t be afraid to cross into the menswear side of stores, like it’s some type of mythological land, with monsters that will come out to bite you. If you aren’t comfortable with shopping in menswear stores, you can order online from the comfort of your couch. Fashion forward retailers like Luisaviaroma carry loads of on-trend Scandi brands that are at the forefront of gender neutrality. You can find fellow Danish and Swedish hero’s such as Ganni and Acne, to new brands such as Baum und Pferdgarten, Stand Studios, and truly begin exploring a new uniform.
When choosing your pieces, make sure it’s something you can style with other pieces relatively easily. It is easy work with sweaters and leave them a bit oversized, to wear with tights and boots under, or if it’s fitted, just layer an oxford shirt underneath. Want a sexier look? Pair a long plain t-shirt with heels and a blazer, for a ‘model on the streets’ inspired outfit that’ll have jaws dropping.
We’ve noticed a lot of men have recently been buying women’s coats. Why you may ask? Because women’s coats tend to come in a huge variety of colours, materials and cuts – unfortunately men’s coats tend to not stray far from the typical blacks, greys and navys. If you are a man based in a city where winters are particularly brutal, like Bergen or Stockholm or Reykjavík or Berlin or Manchester (the list goes on…), you should consider getting a women’s coat mainly for the material, but of course also the slightly feminine vibe that will add a touch of flare to your outfit.
If you take a look at celebrities or influencers at fashion shows, sitting oh-so-glam on the front row, you’ll begin to notice one thing: men are carrying “women’s” bags. Pharrell was recently photographed proudly carrying a Chanel bag. This brings us to accessories as fair game too. Brands are noticing now bags can be used by both men and women, and some have started to lump the two together in “unisex” or “genderless” categories. While other brands are simply designing the same pieces in another colour and slapping “menswear” over it, brands like Our Legacy, Han Kjøbenhavn and CMMN SWDN design their collections for everyone to wear everything.
This new way of dressing is simply beautiful because of what it stands for. It’s about designers and labels embracing a change, and proposing that anybody really can wear their pieces. The inclusion of what usually would be connoted as “feminised” pieces in menswear and vice versa, tells us that brands are listening to consumers, and that the continued crossing of gender boundaries in fashion will only continue to advocate for inclusivity. It’s a redefinition, rather than an opposition.
Written by Mary Johnson
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Tags: gender neutral, genderless, Scandinavian fashion, unisex
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