One of the major themes that emerged in my dress practice log is the influence of intersubjectivity and collective processes: when individuals engage, influence, and perceive one another(Kaiser 2012, 38). I realized that I unconsciously kept reaching for similar garments throughout the week because of the positive feedback I received about those garments, specifically my green coat and pink pants. Before I hadn’t noticed that my dress was heavily influenced by who I was seeing. For example, if I was seeing friends, I would dress in my favorite pastel colors. When I needed to look professional for school and on internship days, I would always reach for a safe black and white outfit. If I wasn’t seeing anyone, I wouldn’t even change out of my pajamas and would not care about my dress at all as long as I was comfortable. I used to think that I always dressed for myself, but now I realize that I am also heavily dressing for others. This leads to another important point that Kaiser mentioned: “People think about others as they get dressed, because they rely on feedback from others, style-fashion-dress is a social process” (Kaiser 2012, 38). Fashion is greatly interconnected with social sciences and psychology, and it is a social movement that shows others who you are and who you are becoming.
The dress practice log also helped me understand the relationship between clothing and the body: I felt the most confident and comfortable when I was wearing loose clothes with straight silhouettes, rather than tight figure-hugging clothes that emphasized the curves of my body. When I am wearing loose, straight silhouettes, I move more freely and I show my personality more since I am less preoccupied with my insecurities. I also feel safer, especially in the New York City area where cat-calling is very common. Although wearing looser clothing doesn’t get rid of cat-calling completely, for me it reduces the number of impure gazes. However that is not to say that cat-calling happens because of what a woman is wearing; it happens despite what women are wearing.