Non-Conforming Androgyny

When I started writing my blog, I did not have a clear defined vision for the blog. I was unsure of the direction in which I wanted to take the blog. The only thing I was sure of was that along with my other passions, I wanted to share my concept of non-conformity with my readers, if and when I was privileged to have some readers.

Now some of you loyalists (whom I appreciate with all my heart) have bestowed upon me your precious time by reading my blog and commenting upon the entries. Your comments are so thought provoking that I want to make a mini-blog of all the comments. I am absolutely floored by your lacerating intellects, breakdowns and dissections. Oh how I wish to sit down with all of you over a cup of cappuccino and enter into a discussion on a myriad of subjects ranging from fashion to philosophy; architecture to inspiration and conformity to non-conformity. (Such a discussion, if held in a café on the Italian Riviera will be preferable haha!)

I am an advocate of non-conformity and will continue to write on it. I admire it because it shows strength, bravery and risk taking. It can be in any walk of life-be it fashion, art, music, literature, architecture or even a profession. If Mark Zuckerberg had continued to conform by following the tried and traditional path of diligently attending classes at Harvard, taking exams and upon graduating sending out resumes to be a computer programmer, would we be enjoying the fruits of the revolutionary powerhouse phenomenon called Facebook!

We all interpret non-conformity based on our personal life experiences and sensibilities. My sweet friendAnika just wrote a beautiful piece on her interpretation of non-conformity, that I enjoyed reading immensely.

There is no set archetype. One of my interpretations of non-conformity is to explore, to veer away my comfort zone and forego established gauges and measures. I am not necessarily being rebellious or radical just to make a point of being a non-conformist, but merely pivoting towards the edge in order to find myedge, my extreme, my limit. I am testing my strength. I am taking a risk.

Androgyny in fashion is a way to step out of the comfort zone for both men and women. I have written earlier blogs on androgyny as applied to both men and women. I find androgyny extremely intriguing and captivating. What makes us want to digress and explore the sexuality of the opposite sex? What is so alluring about role reversal? Is it empowering or simply a way of testing our limit, our edge and our extreme.

Androgyny in fashion is a perfect example of non-conformism. Both men and women who dress androgynously take a risk. The risk of being ridiculed, judged and possibly be even rejected. Yet, they test their limits by using their strength and stepping outside the comfort zone.

James Franco photographed the embodiment of androgyny, Agyness Deyn for Elle magazine. The shot is inspired by James Dean. Agyness is a brave girl and so comfortable with her overt androgynous sexuality. She is unique and hence one of the most sought after models. Yes, non-conformity pays and can bring huge dividends!

Marc Jacobs is wearing pearls and a skirt while supporting a day old stubble from Prada’s fall 2011 collection. It is an ode to being an ardent Miuccia Prada fan. He look simply scrumptious! Marc took a risk to don a skirt and wear a strand of pearls on that perfectly chiseled Greek God body of his.

I too explored my androgyny by dressing in a man’s suit, albeit a somewhat shrunken one inspired more by Thom Brown than Brooks Brothers! It was a step towards finding my strength, even if the pivot towards the edge was only slight. I think I still have it in me to risk a steeper incline to find my edge. As for the day old stubble, I will have to stand on the precipice of my edge for that!