Inspired by 1969: Fashion & Feminism
Everything tends to come full circle.
Recently, I've been inspired by the women that came before us:
Leading ladies, like Audrey Hepburn.
Rule breakers, like Gabrielle Chanel.
Leading feminists, like Gloria Steinem, who maintain an insatiable hunger for change, today.
Sometimes, I fee like I belong in decades past. Pre-Instagram. Pre- "Political Correctness". Pre-Internet feuds, and reality shows like "The Bachelor" (which, let's be real, is the epitome of our generation's downfall.)
There's something about the 60s and 70s in particular that I've been drawn to lately. Beyond flared jeans and statement sunglasses, it was the dawn of second-wave feminism. The 60s saw leading activists pave the way for a new movement of women's rights (because "suffrage" was only the beginning, and only for the privileged).
In 1965, the Voting Rights Act finally secured black women's right to vote in America.
In 1968, Yale finally decided to open its doors to its first cohort of women.
Women championed reproductive rights, tackled the porn industry, and challenged the wage gap. We protested beauty pageants, and opened women's shelters. Feminist and lesbian owned bookstores, restaurants, and businesses opened and served as key meeting places and drivers of the movement.
In 1969, Rep. Charlotte Reid became the first woman to wear pants on the House floor.
Bell-bottomed pants at that.
It's hard to remember that less than 50 years ago, pantsuits were making the news. We've come a long way. (Or have we?)
In fashion and in feminism, I'm revelling in our sisters from the second-wave, who paved the way for us today. We've still got lots of work to do.