I know you are probably all sick to death of hearing about my recent trip to London, but I have one more outfit post to share with you and then I promise to shut up about it for good.
I wore this outfit to day one of the semi-finals of the Genee International Ballet Competition. From past experience I knew that I’d be sitting in a theatre all day and so wearing heels was probably a safe bet!
By the time the event was over and we had to go home, the skies had opened up and we were caught in the midst of a steady downpour. I swear you haven’t had the complete “London Experience” unless you’ve had to weather a day like this one.
We hadn’t come equipped with umbrellas and so decided to call a cab. When we piled in, the driver waxed poetic about how ladylike we looked, and that he hadn’t seen women dressed like that since he first came to London some 40 years ago.
I know that fashion is an individual expression, and I know that the way I dress will certainly not appeal to everyone. But I’ve decided to get up on my proverbial soap box in this post because I think that our driver in London raised a very valid point.
As anyone who has been reading along with my blog will know, I’m an elite classical ballet teacher, and the students I work with mostly are 14-18 years. It saddens me to see beautiful young girls, the ones I work with and those that I see in passing as I go about my daily life, trying to conform to what their peers and society deem “sexy”.
Whenever I read interviews with celebrities, they all say, “I feel sexiest when I’m walking around in my sweat pants with no make up on”. I can honestly put my hand up and say that I am not one of these women. I don’t wear make-up when I’m at work, and for anyone who knows me you will understand that I spend the majority of my time in Active Wear with a naked face, but it doesn’t make me feel “sexy”, it makes me feel comfortable.
When do I feel sexy? The honest answer is NEVER. It’s not something that I strive to feel and it’s not something that I feel like I’m missing out on. What I try to achieve is confidence. I feel confident when I make the effort to get dressed up. It makes me feel good about myself to know that I made an effort and I’m happy with the end result. I dress for myself and what I like, what I think suits me and my body. What other people will think never enters into it.
Coat, Zara (similar here), Shirt, Zara (similar here), Skirt, Zara (similar here), Belt, Review (similar here), Bag, Forever New (similar here), Shoes, Flannel (similar here), Earrings, Mimco (different colour here)
Young girls are constantly stepping out in clothes that sit too low or ride too high, and it’s ridiculous that this is all done in the name of “sexy”. Does dressing like this really makes them feel comfortable in their own skins and give them confidence? No doubt for some it does, but at no age have I ever felt the need to bare 12cms of skin between my navel and my sternum,or show “side boob” or let the edges of my derrière hang below my shorts. In fact if I did I would probably feel so self conscious I would spend the whole day trying desperately to cover up.
I’m not trying to single-handedly change the mind set of teenagers and young women globally, nor do I think I’m a paragon of how women should dress. I don’t think people who show more skin than me are sinners or evil or anything like that. But if one person can read this post and realise that “sexy” comes in many different forms, and it doesn’t necessarily take exposing yourself to the point of being uncomfortable to achieve it. I would also like to take this opportunity to point out that innocence and child hood are things that you can’t get back once they’re gone, and it’s a shame to see so many young people wishing them away.
Dress to make yourself feel confident first, and the rest will follow. After all, there were women who were still considered beautiful and sexy in the 1950’s and they were more covered then exposed. Your dignity and self-respect are priceless, so don’t go trading them in for a modern-day idea of “sexy”.