Over the past few years the conversation surrounding gender neutral and gender fluidity in fashion has grown. People often misunderstand the phrase gender neutral because they don't know what is required from a gender fluid brand. An organization from a technical and branding point-of-view makes a conscious choice in both the designing and construction phases. To ensure the customer, (may they be male, female or non-binary)
has the ultimate product, perfect for every occasion- the fit, style and market all need to be considered. Gender neutral doesn’t have to mean oversized / ill-fitting or boring, it is vibrant, accepting and forward thinking.
1. Fitting Gender Neutral Clothes
Normally, when designers develop a menswear or womenswear line they commonly base the sizing on one of 3 factors
- Basing fit off the countries averages
- Sizing is based up the size of a fit model
- Sizing is reflective of the designers own measurements
This isn't possible in gender-neutral fashion as the average range of sizing between genders can be quite different. To ensure a more good fit gender-neutral fashion companies compares and contrasts averages and then combines multiple sizes. This is a more complex process then basing the fit on a singular size
. As a result, creating a more flexible sizing whilst maintaining a solid fit.
Fit is everything in fashion as labels need to cover a variety of body shapes. As is-gender men and women often carry weight differently so the designs need to have adaptable features to create new shapes. Women tend to be proportionally smaller round the waist then most men. So when producing a fitted gender-neutral items the design need to have design features that can alter the fit to improve the shape for all body types. Designers, rather then creating adjustable pieces, can also create strong, ambiguous silhouettes. Gender neutral fashion needs to include styles that do not cinch around the waist, such as loose tees, straight shirts or structured jackets.
These styles are not restricted by masculinity or femininity and because of this, they help create a fluidity within the fit.
2. Avoiding Gendered Trends
Gender-neutral blurs the lines between fashion styles and trends. Traditionally, men in the 20th century were expected to wear neutral colors and women were restricted to styles that forced femininity. Now with our present-day gender revolution expression through design and color is important in creating a gender-neutral line. Fashion fluidity does not mean ignoring gender; it is committing to our ever growing gendered world. Being adventurous with color and not conforming to clothing stereotypes is often what separates gender neutral brands and out shines more gendered brands.
3. Shared Shopping Experience
Where most brands can falter in the shared shopping experience of gender neutral clothing. Conforming to placing a gender neutral style in a menswear or womenswear section removes the underlining powerful message about equality. For this reason, the choice of gender neutral needs to be available. The media produced need to show balanced of all genders to remove biases and increase the flexibility of the styles for the wearer. A variety of models wearing the gender neutral style is one way to show the influence that gender neutral fashion can have and help inspire people to wear less gender restricting clothes.
Gender-neutral allows people to express themselves exactly as they choose. The empowerment passed along from every moment is why gender-neutral clothing is the next step for fashion.
So broaden your wardrobe horizons and consider fashion for everyone.