Stare

Have you ever sat on the train quietly, your headphones blasting Missy Higgins new album of soulful treats whilst you put your make up on and find yourself being stared at? I have. Melissa has too.

It’s rarely the dirty old guy you think it will be either, most of the time it’s other women and maybe staring is the wrong term, “studied” is a better explanation. Usually they’re curvy teenagers who’ve developed early or people my age dressed in baggy black sacks that look wistfully at my colourful ensembles. Sometimes they’ll stare a bit too long, catch my gaze and give a small smile and turn away, sometimes they compliment me and sometimes they’ll screw up their nose but each to their own.

It’s the teenagers who get to me the most, the ones yet to discover their style and self-confidence. They stand waveringly on the train, holding the pole sussing out my shoes, the cut of my top and how I apply my eyeliner. I want to grab them by the shoulders, hug them and tell them it’s ok, they’ll learn all this stuff and that it takes practice with a little bit of risk.

But to grab a child on public transport like that would be illegal.

So instead I always smile back and answer any questions they have, should they be brave enough to ask them. There is no guarentee that they’ll learn about fashion, about colours, cuts or trends. No one just wakes up knowing about this stuff. Mothers are the first educators we have when it comes to fashion that suits our body types, for the most part we inherit bodies that look just like theirs. But if their mothers have never been taught, how are they meant to teach, how are the young girls meant to learn?

Magazines help a little bit, they teach you the basic aesthetics and traditional silohettes but it’s a bit pointless if your body doesn’t look like any that are featured in the magazine. Where does this leave the teen with curves, the teen who doesn’t look like her friends, the teen with no self esteem?

Thank goodness for blogs.

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    I was always tiny (size 6-8) as a teenager and as a young adult, right up until having my daughter 4 years ago. I thought as I was pretty fit and active the baby weight would just drop off. Alas it wasn’t to be. Nothing I did would shift the 30+ kg I had gained. I discovered late last year that it was due to PCOS and insulin resistance. Bummer. But it was enough to shake up my attitude towards my body. I started blogging to hold myself accountable in regards to the way I present myself. Blogs like yours and sugercoatit have been invaluable to me and realising that just because I have curves now doesnt mean I need to cover them up in baggy clothes or all black. It’s so liberating to see how amazing you guys look and how you create stunning outfits that show of your best assets.
    Thank you, and I can only hope that every woman with curves and body issues stumbles upon any one of the network of blogs that represent Aussie curves. It’s made a huge change in my body confidence. :)

    Cheers

    Cie

  2. 5

    says

    Yes thanks goodness for them blogs D :-)
    Depends what mood i am in I have really utterly no fashion sense whats so ever . Maybe you need to give me some pointers {hint} lol
    But sometimes it gets my goat when people stare ,once i was in a funny mood way so went up to the lass and held out my hand and said “Hiya i’m Dannie” i think she thought i was a lesbo lol… she looked at me and said rack off with her nose in the air.
    Won’t try that again in a hurry *sigh* No wonder i go and hide back in my shell ~ yep star sign is cancer oh dear!

  3. 7

    says

    Yes, without blogs I would never have discovered that I can wear skinny jeans (thanks Suger Coat It) or discovered & bought clothes from 17 Sundays or Damn You Alexis.

    • 10

      says

      Miss yours too. I still remember your first “I love you thanks for inspiring me” kind of comment… now you’re off inspiring others, I feel like a mother hen lol.

  4. 11

    says

    I often people watch and really want to know their story but am too shy or afraid to ask.

    You need to carry some photocopied versions of your blog(business) card and hand them out. You just never know….

  5. 13

    says

    I’m only just finding my style now and it’s blogs and bloggers that have helped me! I never looked like a magazine so it was always a bit confusing for me.

    I think we would all appreciate that smile.

  6. 15

    says

    I got a lot of stares in Japan. It seemed like the women in my neighbourhood were competing to see who could be dressed the drabbest and I’d be walking down the street being all white and fat and dressed in bright red. It made me really self conscious for a while then I figured what could I do… not like I’m going to start dressing in beige sacks to fit in.

  7. 17

    says

    Hey Dan, I have 2 teenage girls, I am constantly pulling them up on comments they make about girls on TV. Its funny its always girls too, you females have a funny need to judge each other, lol
    I am really trying hard to teach them not to judge any body by what you first see of them, or that its fine for people to be that little bit different, or to carry a bit more weight than someone else… Some times I can’t believe they are my kids, but that’s teenagers I suppose

    • 18

      says

      Tony it’s an uphill battle I swear! Tough nuts to crack but worth it if you keep trying. Just keep imagining the strong, confident, approachable women they’ll become.

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