Power Suit: Revamping Women’s Dress Code

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Are women’s fashion styles changing? Are they heading towards a more androgynous look?

Bomber jackets and blazers paired with boyfriend jeans became a norm in 2016. Many centuries ago, you wouldn’t dare see a woman in jeans, or even pants for that matter. During the early 20th century (1920s and 1930s to be exact) is when women start wearing trousers leisurely. That is, when completing their housewife duties out in the garden. Women often wore dresses and skirts — not the denim minis of the 2000s, we’re talking A-line, floor length, multi-layered skirts — and any woman seen without one was labeled unwomanly. During the 1960s feminism took over, and women began wearing pants in everyday settings. Carol Moseley-Braun who was the first African-American woman elected to Senate, became the first woman senators to rock pantsuits. Thus women in pants were born.

46-odd years later on Jan 8, 2017, on the red carpet of the Golden Globe Awards, actress Evan Rachel Wood made a bold fashion statement in which the media and fashion outlets praised her style, and daringness to not wear a typical gown. She wore a custom made Altuzarra silk pantsuit.

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In an interview with Ryan Seacrest, she states “This is my third nomination and I’ve been to the Globes six times, and I’ve worn a dress every time…I love dresses — I’m not trying to protest dresses — but I wanted to make sure that young girls and women knew they aren’t a requirement. And that you don’t have to wear one if you don’t want to, and to just be yourself because your worth is more than that.”

Wood’s inspiration behind the choice of clothing for the night came directly from the late David Bowie. “I met Bowie when I was 15 backstage at his Reality tour, and I blacked out completely. I grew up idolizing David Bowie.”You couldn’t define Bowie and when I was growing up, that’s how I felt about myself.” she told Billboard. Along with this inspiration, she channeled old Hollywood glamour mixed with Marlene Dietrich to achieve this look.

Along with Wood, Felicity Huffman and Octavia Spencer both opted for the non-traditional route as well.

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Wood’s pro-feminist statement made headlines on Twitter, in which some users responded that she was not the first woman to powerfully wear a pantsuit on a red carpet.

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Other women who rock pantsuits, trousers, an women’s tuxedos — most notably Janell Monae — are Zendaya, Charli XCX, Anna Kendrick, Jennifer Aniston, Blake Lively, Rihanna, and many more women to be named. See a full slideshow here on Elle.com.

Where will women’s fashion take us in 2017?

Koya Perez

Just a Philly girl who loves all things pink, Paris, and writing. Fashion is my superpower. Creativity is my sixth sense :)

One Comment

  1. Thanks, great article.

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