Fashion is mostly defined by sex or gender (menswear, womenswear) but there are a few designers that are bucking that old notion and turning it on it’s ear. These designers are creating things for all genders to wear.
Unisex refers to things designed for both sexes and to a style which both sexes look and dress in a similar way. Although the first use of unisex was in the 1960’s, during the youth culture in the United States and the United Kingdom, it stretches back to the late 19th Century in France as part of the “Victorian Dress Reform”. The first development of unisex clothing freed women up to be more active. This really took off during the women’s movement when they started to adopt wearing trousers. It took a while to take, but when it did, everything changed. It started as clothes for sport (riding horses, riding bicycles, playing cricket) and then moved into everyday alternative for skirts. Unisex clothing became more widespread in the 1960’s and 1970’s.
Which brings us to today. Unisex clothing has been quietly making waves in the fashion world with androgony popping up on the runways and on the streets. Designers have been slowly bringing it to the forefront, taking cues from all sexes and creating for them. Some may have a few pieces in their collections that are unisex. Others are creating everything unisex. Here are a few of my favorites:
Rad Hourani- http://www.radhourani.com
Rad Hourani is a Canadian based, multi hyphenate like Karl Lagerfeld. Designer, photographer, film maker, artist. His work is an attentive observation of humanity that celebrates neutrality as a defining trait. His process advocates non-conformity as the essence of individuality. He approaches this through painting, sculpture, photography, costume, sound and video. All of his pieces can be worn by men and women of different ages. Check out his site to get a view of his amazing work.
Willis Chan- (willischan.ca) (antemeridiemsstudio.com)
Another Canadian based designer that make some amazing unisex designs along with some awesome visuals and contributes to Ante Meridiem is Willis Chan. The pieces for Ante Meridiem are a collaborative effort and this current season merges traditional American sportswear with Japanese tailoring. This is another batch of pieces that I need to save some money for. They are mostly staple pieces, but they are made beautifully.
I’ve also come across a site that also has pieces that can be worn by men and women. This site I have been regularly checking to see if there is anything new on the pipeline. It is called KowTow and it is based in New Zealand (a place that I would love to visit) (www.kowtowclothing.com). Althought the pieces on the site are being modeled by a woman, many of the pieces can be worn by a man. Loose fits and neutral colors make up the pallette of the brand. Many of these pieces can be layered and can be worn anywhere.
Take some time and check out the sites mentioned and let me know what you think.
Stay fashionable and sexy!!!!