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Short Hemlines And Snap Judgments

Published by Allie Reese.

Figuring out fashion and clothes can be as frustrating as desperately searching for your LBD by digging through your laundered clothes that is your floor— you don’t even know where to begin. Fashion can mean very much or very little, depending on who you talk to. I, for one, am enamored with it. As trite as that may seem to some, I’m afraid I’m going to plod on anyway.

I study, shop for, and consciously style clothes for myself. It’s how I express myself. Some Most days I’m feeling matronly, and I’ll wear a midi skirt with a wool cardigan. Other days I feel cheeky, opting for my high-rise denim shorts with a graphic tee slovenly half-tucked away. And though it’s how I express myself, that doesn’t give anyone free rein to determine my character and motives.

This is what judging someone based on their clothes looks like: sluts wear short skirts, assholes wear plaid shorts, slackers wear pajama pants, heel-wearers are try-hards — I could go on. These statements are inane and ridiculous.

One can’t infer another person’s character or motives based on anything, really. Judging someone based on their appearance is in our nature. It’s easy to do. It’s easy to have categories, or perfect little boxes for people to be lumped in and labeled. My ex defended the act, because it was “efficient”. But I don’t think people don’t deserve to be “efficiently” judged. I don’t think people, individually and wonderfully complicated, deserve to be given seven seconds to be all figured out.

With women and hemlines in particular, we’re likely to get it wrong. If you check out the photo above, 70% of the descriptors are negative. That leaves only 30% of space that we can work with. Seems pretty limiting to me. I don’t want to live in a world where I need to fit in between “cheeky” and “proper”, where my skirt length determines exactly who I am, or who you are.

To quote Lena Dunham, one way to be an actual feminist is to “allow for the woman who wants to walk down the street in booty shorts.” I don’t know you, but I know you are unique. I’d come to the same conclusion based on your pants choice — maxi, mini, or the lack thereof — and no other.

This post is adapted from here.

Featured image via Maurice Garlet on Unsplash



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