Scroll Top

Brushstrokes: The Many Shades of Fashion

A comic panel. At the top is text against a white backgound which reads, "Yes, sometimes we are caught in the web." 2/3rd of the panel has yellow background with a illustration of a feminine-presenting character laying on a spider web. The character is wearing a dark pink tank top, pink skirt and heels, and is carrying a bag that reads "GUCCI" on top. Along the web are the words "Male-gaze", "Gender norms", "Objectification", "Sexism", "Body-Shaming", "Patriarchy", and "Capitalism".

For the longest time, I associated ‘fashion’ with patriarchy and capitalism, which led me to dismiss it. However, over time, I encountered individuals who have redefined fashion on their own terms. From a friend who donned their best attire for a trip to the grocery store simply because they felt like it to another friend confidently strutting down a fashion runway wearing a bra and proudly displaying their unshaven armpits, I began to realise that fashion could be a powerful means of self-expression and self-love.

For far too long, patriarchy has exerted control over the clothing choices of marginalised gender groups, dictating what they should wear. However, for many people, fashion serves as a vehicle for expressing their unique identities, their political beliefs, and their sexual orientation. It is a formidable tool for challenging oppressive norms, allowing clothing to become an integral facet of one’s self-expression and a means of celebrating one’s sexuality.