the Melbourne fashion world right now.. - Sans Pareil

the Melbourne fashion world right now..

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Two things seem to be on the mind of every fashion oriented Melbourntonian at the moment: Spanish fashion giant Zara soon to be gracing our little old Bourke St, and Andrej Pejic; so this will be a combination post because, well, I does what I want.
Firstly, I don’t know about you all but I am rather shamelessly excited about the opening of the new Zara store (click the link, if you’re not quite sure what Zara is). I know that no doubt, in a few weeks I will feel disillusioned and cast it in the basket of ‘meh, another designer chain-store’ ala Top Shop; however I have to admit I am rather giddy about the sneak preview on Tuesday evening!

Now, onto the other name on everyone’s lips: Andrej Pejic.

This Melbourne born, 19 year old, sprung into existentce as a male – as far as this blogger knows Pejic’s chromosome read XY. Now I know, that is a pretty strange introductory statement to assert about someone, however; the reason why I make his sex clear is that Pejic is making waves in the fashion world as the first androgynous supermodel (or soon to be supermodel if Jean Paul Gaultier has anything to do with it),

That’s right, he seems to have a face which could launch a thousand ships (or casting calls) and designers are not seeming to care what sex he is, as long as they can book him! He is so pretty in fact, that FHM ranked him #98 on their ‘Hottest 100 Women in the World 2011’ list (though they followed this with a rather homophobic comm

ent on their website that was, of course, retracted later. I’m surprised that more didn’t expect this reaction, after all it is FHM, who are not exactly known for their intellectual property). Anyway, I am still rather divided on my opinion of him. On one hand, it is quite awesome that this gender bender is doing just that – challenging the gender stereotyping and what our era considers feminine beauty… however, on of my major issues with the fashion world is watching it steadily turn to the ‘pre-pubescent girl’ look. In other words: no hips, ass or bust of any size. That is, the ’12 year old boy look’ (starting to sound familiar?) –

and therefore, establishing the very slight frame of Pejic as a beauty ideal could have a detrimental effect on women. After all, a lot of ad campaigns and runway shows have him modelling female clothes, and these high end pictures are what end up in magazines, bought around the world by people like you and I. Suppose this is yet another step in the wrong direction in the war of the female body ideal?

Although, on the other side of the coin, one could argue that casting the very beautiful Pejic is actually addressing these problematic beauty ideals. After all, he is blatantly a form that is unattainable, instead of seeming just out of reach, his body is openly unattainable. I guess time will tell the effects on the public, and I suppose it’s good that someone has come along to challenge conventions of beauty. Fingers crossed that they are challenged and not enforced.


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