So I'd like to take a moment to link to this really amazing post about a really amazing project: creating an online marketplace for gender-variant clothing solutions. An inclusive community. The founder of Genderfork is asking for input, and for videos from people who want this, to try to drum up support and funding. Being quite comfortable with the gender I started out with, mine isn't a voice that this project particularly needs, but I absolutely believe in what they're doing, and I hope it can be part of something more - a future where our clothes are our own choice.
So check out A Genderplayful Marketplace, also now on tumblr, and if it sounds like you, then maybe make a video.
This is my (slightly redundant to what I've just said here) comment that I posted over there:
This concept doesn't exactly apply to me, but I think it's a fantastic idea, and I just want to throw that out there. It wouldn't benefit me personally, but it could benefit a lot of people I know, and moreover, I see something something like your genderplayful marketplace as potentially being a part of something bigger, something important.
The ready-to-wear market and the fashion industry have failed us in ways beyond counting - all of us, to one degree or another. There need to be alternatives, lots of them, to shopping at the mall, at boutiques, at off-price stores, and at couture houses. Alternatives that focus on people, rather than on the market. Alternatives that enable people to dress how they want, for who they are, regardless of sex, gender, size, or shape.
Clothes that leave people feeling not-themselves are a huge problem in the genderqueer arena, but they're a problem far beyond that as well, and I really hope that this marketplace is successful, and becomes a part of a larger movement away from consuming clothing as it is as thrown at us. Appearance, including clothing, is part of the nonverbal communication that shapes and informs our interactions as human beings - we should be able to communicate the messages that are important to us, rather than being limited by the fashion industry and its limited notions of style, fit, and identity.
I don't think a video from me - a comfortably cis-gendered woman who dresses to play up her curves and favors fluffy skirts - would quite fit your mission, but I'll do everything I can to get the word out about this to people who would benefit very personally from what you're doing. It's wonderful.
I know that I'm again making generalizations about the evils of ready-to-wear supremacy, but every time I think about being more specific, it gets overwhelming - there's so much to talk about, so much that needs to be discussed specifically, carefully, and accurately, that I don't want to do it halfway. But I promise! I will write a full post on the troubling (I can't say problematic; I just can't) effects of the ready-to-wear market and fashion industry. Not just an angry diatribe - I don't actually think that fashion is inherently evil, anyway - but a point-by-point critique.
For now, I'll just say this:
Imagine that it's not about money and it's not about time. Imagine you can wear anything you want. What would it look like? How would it fit? How would it feel? What would it emphasize, and what would it hide?
What would your clothes communicate to the world around you?
Are the answers to those questions, in the hypothetical world of wearing anything you want, anything like the answers to those questions in your life right now?
Whether you're non-gender-conforming, shaped differently from industry standard dress forms, dress modestly for religious reasons, or simply have a unique style that you want to share with the world - you should have the right to communicate the message of your choice through your appearance.