Late last month, we covered two collections from Paris Fashion Week Men’s. Louis Vuitton and Fendi both presented collections that were so bag heavy they were impossible to ignore. Not to mention, the bags were good, they were really good. Following the release of these collections, the many comments that came along with our coverage, and the closing of Pride Month, I found myself thinking about the concept of gender fluidity in fashion.

It’s 2019, and to say that people, and our world as a whole, are more accepting than ever before is a pretty accurate statement. However, it is impossible to ignore that we can all always do better. Living in a big city like New York also makes it very easy to forget that other parts of the world are not as accepting, and though it’s sometimes a hard pill to swallow, not every human is going to share the same views and opinions on LGBTQ rights. Though as humans it should be clear that we all deserve the same love and respect regardless of our sexual or gender identity.

We all, as humans, deserve the right to wear what we want to wear, and to make a statement with our appearance regardless of our gender identity or our sexuality

Growing up I always knew that someday I wanted to work in fashion, and from a very early age I used fashion as a way to express myself. I was shy and insecure growing up and what I wore was a way for me to say what I wanted to say—and make a statement—without really saying anything at all. We all, as humans, deserve the right to wear what we want to wear, and to make a statement with our appearance regardless of our gender identity or our sexuality.

I’m a heterosexual female and because I wear what many would consider ‘normal’ for someone whose gender identity is female, (though the heteronormative mentality is exactly what we should be working to abolish) it would be easy for me to ignore the issues of gender fluidity in fashion. However this is an issue that I feel compelled to discuss. I know the impact that fashion has had on me as I grew up—it helped me gain confidence and a sense of self. The youth of today and tomorrow, or people of any age for the matter, deserve the same, regardless of whether they identify as male, female or gender non-binary.

Will the industry as a whole ever get to a point where clothes and accessories are not seen and/or marketed as for men or women only?

The fashion industry is often at the forefront of acceptance, which is huge considering the impact that the industry has on the world. The last few seasons we have seen numerous strides towards fluidity on the runways. Designers have chosen more androgynous models and both male and female collections have been shown in tandem as many designers have chosen to combine their men’s and women’s collections, but is this truly enough? Will the industry as a whole ever get to a point where clothes and accessories are not seen and/or marketed as for men or women only?

There are still strides to be made to create a mentality in fashion where bags and other items are not seen as for one gender only. Specific bag shapes, colors, prints and patterns are still geared towards a certain gender, though the lines have begun to blur a bit. The Fendi and Louis Vuitton Men’s collections are a huge indicator of where the industry is headed, and I personally would love to see the industry become as inclusive as possible. I look forward to a day when designers and brands show one collection that isn’t gender specific.

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