That Was My Veil: Sartorial and Cosmetic Constructions of Resilience in Divorced Women

A research exploration of fashion and resilience by MA Fashion Studies graduate Kim Jenkins

“The Divorce Empowerment Dress”, Burda Style

Here’s an example of divorce, DIY style.

I recently stumbled upon a post on Burda Style, a website serving as a creative hub for women who sew, featuring a member who wanted to share what she named her “Divorce Empowerment Dress”:

I bought this fabric at the Salvation Army because it was too wild to resist, but I was always a bit shy to use it. However, when I got divorced, I thought that it was high time I used it to shake up my wardrobe and so this dress was born! The problem is that the fabric is 100% retro polyester and it’s very very warm to wear. Also I had to top stitch every seam because it’s impossible to press. The upside is that it’s also impossible to wrinkle!

Here we see a woman who has appropriated something old or with no particular use, and transformed it into something meaningful in her life. I may be projecting here, but I also think that the red, white and blue color scheme of the fabric symbolizes independence (at least with relation to Western ideals). On a subconscious level, the durability of the fabric (being “impossible to wrinkle”) sort of materializes her resolve.

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This entry was posted on October 1, 2012 by in Dresses and tagged , , , , , , .
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