Social Question

OpryLeigh's avatar

Women: How do you feel about the use of this male model at London Fashion Week?

Asked by OpryLeigh (25260points) February 25th, 2011

I was reading this article today and found myself quite annoyed by it.

Forget the bits about ultra skinny female models passing out after stepping off the catwalk, we all know that there’s something very wrong with that but is there something wrong with designers like Jean Paul Gaultier using male models to model female clothes?

Personally, I am not offended by this at all. There is no denying (for me) that this man looks amazing. I am, however, becoming increasingly annoyed with journalists, such as the one that wrote this article, telling women what we should be offended by.

Isn’t fashion all about pushing the boundaries anyway?

What are your thoughts?

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19 Answers

snowberry's avatar

I think the idea is kind of stupid. (I never read such articles, and I only read this one for you!) I doubt it’s a plan to attack femininity. These people are out to make money, and many people are attracted to sensationalism and controversy.

syz's avatar

The fashion world has always been a gender-bending bastion. Who cares?
He looks amazingly like a woman.

SuperMouse's avatar

I am horrified by the article. I read it before reading the entire question and when I came back I was surprised by the stances! I am about as close to the fashion runways as I am to the moon, but I do think that using a 19 year old boy to model clothes designed to be worn by women pretty much defeats the purpose.

bkcunningham's avatar

@Leanne1986 the article is column. An opinion piece or commentary. It isn’t a news article. Amana Platell is a bit of a controversial and outspoken figure in her own right.

marinelife's avatar

It just shows that designers do not design for women’s bodies.

aprilsimnel's avatar

That rag’s nicknamed The Daily Fail for a reason. Its sole purpose is to titillate readers – with added fake indignation.

cazzie's avatar

I think he looks very much like a female model and I think this article is silly. I think the guy looks very feminine. This is meant to ‘strip women of their femininity’? Having a man copy the feminine looks of a woman is flattering. But some of the models these days look a bit sickening. This was an old but interesting article…..

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I’ll probably get crap for this, but who is it that puts up with this crap? Just because some idiots say this is how models should look and no one calls them on the fact that it’s completely offbase? I hate the skinny malnourished look. It completely turns me off. So I don’t pay any attention to these shows. Someone must be though, or they wouldn’t get the attention.

SavoirFaire's avatar

As has already been said: this is an opinion column rather than journalism, and we have reached the ridiculous when clothes for women cannot be worn by women.

Great artists work with limitations. Fugues are extremely difficult to write on their own, yet J.S. Bach would give himself handicaps to make it even harder for himself. Overcoming those challenges was part of his artistry. Fashion designers, on the other hand, are apparently finding it difficult to make beautiful women look good. Hips and breasts are their obstacles? That’s like telling Bach his only limitation is that he has to use notes in his music. If this is what counts as pushing the boundaries in the world of fashion, I’ll have to reconsider calling it an art.

Seelix's avatar

That model looks amazingly feminine – I wonder if anyone would care if he were to have gender reassignment surgery.

Personally, I don’t care. It’s not as though the clothing shown on the runway is intended to actually be worn, in most cases. Whether they use men or women to display their art (because that’s what it is, really – not fashion in the sense of clothing that an everyday person would actually wear) doesn’t matter to me – I just think they ought to design for larger bodies so the poor kids can have a sandwich once in a while.

OpryLeigh's avatar

@Seelix Your point about fashion being art rather than practical clothing is pretty much the reason why this doesn’t bother me. Maybe if male models were being used in highstreet stores where women shop everyday, I might understand why it would cause women to be pissed off but the catwalk has always been a platform to push the boundaries and shock. I quite like it that way and, maybe it’s wrong of me, but for shows like this, I don’t really want to see ordinary.

FutureMemory's avatar

I can tell it’s not a real woman. Something about the face just isn’t right.

auntydeb's avatar

The fashion industry is as far removed from daily, ordinary life as High Art, though by no means as cultured. Annual fashion shows are designed to showcase the work of people who are basically trained like artists but whose livelihood depends on their work being re-designed to be sold on the high street. Like posters of pictures by, say Jack Vettriano, whose work is popular and accessible.

Those of us who are not so interested in the fashionable looks are not much affected by what goes on at the catwalk shows. Gender is not really the issue, and hasn’t been for 30 years or more. Gay designers dress boyish girls in clothes that, as mentioned, have to be completely rebuilt for ordinary people to wear. The boy himself is much prettier than many of the girls! And, the washboard stomach and lack of breasts is at least more natural for him. I say look on and wonder, just as one might at the latest Damien Hurst. Just another thing to gawp at basically.

VS's avatar

When I rule the world, the first rule is going to be that runway models MUST maintain at least a size 10 and that will be the norm. Even at 10, it is smaller than most “normal-sized” women at 12 to 14. Marilyn Monroe wore a size 14. And I do not understand the fascination with the starving child-like waif look. It is crap and no one was uglier off the runway than Kate Moss. Put some damn meat on those bones, girls!! If people (read here: clothes designers!) were more accepting of normal-sized models, we wouldn’t need to put half-starved, child-like boy waifs on the runway.

iamthemob's avatar

This type of high fashion is, in many ways, meant to inspire trends in real-world clothing. The fact that the optimal body type is, in many ways, featureless is because, indeed, the women are supposed to be hangers.

I don’t think this is about the designers not being able to overcome certain barriers – rather there is merely a quality to a curveless female form that, although unnatural, is easier to interchange one of the models for the other. These models are kind of like the Rockettes. Further, they choose to work in a particular medium – it’s like those who work in sonnets rather than free-verse.

I actually think this is the least misogynistic thing I’ve seen. It’s always been considered shameful for men to wear women’s clothes, where women wearing men’s cloths is somehow empowering. This is a step in the right direction, as far as I’m concerned.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

Irrelevant, but I think I’m in love.

faye's avatar

I was fed up with fashion shows years ago for their impossible clothes at impossible prices. I grew up trying to meet that frigging Twiggy thinness. I’ll bet my rotten nutrition for years contributed to my criketiness now.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’m not bothered or threatened because runway shows and the clothes produced for them are not really meant for wear, they’re a presentation of an idea, an extract a workable line will be produced from.

What I dislike is the presentation of the journalist but hey, to each his/her own.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I’ve seen this young man’s “book” (portfolio) that was linked in a Jezebel profile. If he wants to do it and the clothes look good on him, have at it, I say. I realize that catwalks are more for flights of imagination and less for actual wearable clothing.

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