Empowerment & Pussy Bow Blouses

Did you know the pussy bow has its roots in women’s empowerment? Really, it’s true! The pussy bow blouse was first seen as a popular fashion trend in the 1950’s with designers like Coco Chanel and Yves Saint Laurent popularizing a more masculine or androgynous look. But the trend really took hold in the 1980’s just as some women were entering the corporate world as an alternative to the tie worn by their male counterparts.

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Often the pussy bow blouse was worn with a power suit and seen as a way to soften up a look that was required to be taken seriously. Dress codes have dramatically loosened in most of the corporate world but also as a result of women’s career options widening. As a person who works in non-profit organizations, often supporting people living on a low income, it is important not to overdress. Regardless of where you work, what you wear while you do your job is something you regularly consider unless you have a uniform.

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What we wear to work has long been a topic of conversation and a reason for women to be scrutinized by their male colleagues and male supervisors. For far too long, women were expected to look beautiful and accept sexual harassment as a part of the job. If you need an example, watch any episode of Mad Men and you will see exactly what I mean. Although you don’t have to look to our past, there are countless cases of employers demanding women dress differently than their male employees.

While the concept itself may seem feminist at the core, some of the most prominent pussy bow blouse wearers are specifically anti-feminist. Most recently Melania Trump wore a Gucci version days after comments about her husband “grabbing” women he has sexually assaulted “by the pussy” and further back in history, Margaret Thatcher made it part of her image. Also, the idea of women entering the workforce in the 1950s is racist since many women of colour had been working outside of their homes for decades.

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This shirt may not officially meet the traditional definition of the term pussy bow blouse but it is essentially a modern take on the flowy one fabric look we have come to love. This version actually felt more like a tie than the original and classic design. If you recall my recent post about Femme Invisibility Frustrations then I’d like to point out that I feel as if I “look queer” in this outfit, or least queerer than I usually do. And I like it!

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Outfit Details:

Blouse: Lurap

Jeggings: Torrid

Sweater: Additionelle

Booties & Purse: Urban Planet

One thought on “Empowerment & Pussy Bow Blouses

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