Pictured wearing Ann Taylor jacket, top and pants
Standing in front of my closet with shelves piled high with nearly every style of pant that exists — tailored trousers, skinny jeans, flares, capris, jumpsuits (you name it!) — it’s hard to imagine a time when the option to wear pants at all would not have been a choice available to me, a woman. Not only was it not a choice, but even through the 1940s women in some parts of the Unites States were arrested for wearing pants. Fast forward thirty years and it still took until 1972 for it to be guaranteed that girls had the right to wear pants to school.
It sounds ridiculous doesn’t it? Arresting a woman just for wearing pants? Not being allowed to wear pants to school? But this sartorial choice goes well beyond fashion, and represents a significant part of history in our continued fight for equality. Since today is International Women’s Day, it felt like the right time to take a moment to reflect on the women’s right to wear trousers, and the women who fought to make it our right.
Now, I wish I could say that this post was inspired entirely by my own knowledge and interest in International Women’s Day and women’s rights, but the truth of the matter is that I have the team at Ann Taylor to thank for reminding of the significance a simple garment such as the pant has on our history as women. As their newest campaign video sates, Pants Are Power, and we women of 2018 sure as hell better not forget it.
If you watched Ann Taylor’s video (above), I hope you caught a key message that will make your eyes widen and blood boil: Women. Are. Still. Fighting. For. The Right. To. Wear. Pants.
Even in more recent years (like, seriously I’m talking the past few, and even last year) congress women, flight attendants and news anchors have been fighting for their right to wear pants to work. It’s hard to believe that in 2018 this is still what women have to fight for, but unfortunately it is true. Don’t believe me? Read this article about British Airways’ agreement to finally allow female employees to wear pants to work in 2016 or this article on why a Fox News anchor’s pantsuit made headlines in the summer of 2017.
How you express yourself and what choose to wear, especially on International Women’s Day, is entirely up to you. You do you, and own it. Because you can! We are lucky that we can, and we need to remember that. But consider wearing a killer pair of pants today in honour of the women who fought for the right for us to wear pants any time we want.
Let’s make ’em proud, and honour that Pants Are Power.
(Story by Editor-in-Chief, Gracie Carroll)