A visit to the shopping mall and all kinds of people dressed in varied shades and type of clothes is what catches the eye. While the guys longingly ogle at pretty girls and women check out each other from top to down- right from how has she done her hair to her toe nail and the shade of nail paint, one cannot fail to notice some middle aged aunties all dressed up in a pair of jeans or a skirt, some of them look around awkwardly, adjust their dress and try to look comfortable but it’s apparent that they are not. How could they possibly be? For around them are so many eyes scanning them, some are whispering to others and guffawing. It is quite evident that people find it amusing when a fat lady wears jeans.
She’s your regular woman who has those tires around her waist and some generous dollops of flesh on her thighs. She is the one always trying to hide these so called flaws by wearing an ill fitting salwar for hasn’t she heard time and again from everyone- “you are FAT, you are an AUNTY stop acting like a young girl. Wear a loose kurta that will hide the flab”. But looking at people around her wearing all sorts of clothes, she has a longing to try out jeans ad those lovely long skirts and the Maxi Dresses. Don’t they look pretty and who says only thin women should wear them. If she musters up courage, she goes ahead and buys them.
But would people be as open minded as her? NO. Haven’t we heard the super dumb statements that clothes like shorts, minis and one piece dresses are meant for thin women for only they can carry them. I have always been a woman of medium frame, not really thin but somewhere on the average side. I longed to wear one piece dresses and skirts to work but the notion that these are only meant for women with skinny legs is what stopped me each time for skinny legs has never been my thing. Finally one day I bought a beautiful one piece from Van Heusen on an impulse and I was pleasantly surprised when I saw how well I could carry it off. Since then I have changed my wardrobe and I trust my instincts about what clothes I should wear and ignore the pre set notions that people have been filling my head with. I think I am matured enough to decide for myself what I want to wear.
It really irks me to the anorexic models around- be it on tv, online shopping sites or the mannequins in stores. When everyone around is only screaming that “Thin is In” what message are they sending out to the scores of women who do not fit within this definition? The average Indian body type is curvy, not thin. A lot of us post delivery are not able to devote much time to exercising due to childcare responsibilities and there could be many who face health issues causing them to put on weight. So are all such people losers and should always hide themselves and their not so ideal figure in baggy and ill fitted clothes? Who has come up with this utterly illogical notion of what some people can wear and what they can’t for they can’t carry it off.
I was thrilled to see Elle India (which helped to be one of my favorite brands) challenge this stereotype and do a photo shoot with plus size models. And the shoot was simple awesome. It never felt that they looked out of place or cannot carry the clothes; in fact they did a fantastic job. All of them were regular women working in marketing, media and advertising who were proud of themselves and their body. This was such a refreshing change and kudos to the beautiful ladies and Elle for this brilliant shoot.
One more utterly stupid comment people often make is “now you are a Mummy why bother about dressing up and doing make up? Who is going to look at you? And some go a step further especially if a woman has a teenage daughter and say ” you have a growing daughter, are you trying to give her competition? You should maintain a low profile”. These are so meaningless and the heights of stupidity. So a woman needs to dress up only for others, to impress boys and find a good match but once she’s married and becomes a Mommy, personal grooming should take a backseat and only focus should be her kids. This has never made sense to me – I dress up for myself not to impress anyone. And the day I look shabby and disheveled, I don’t feel good. Dressing up well makes me feel good and that obviously reflects in my attitude and spirit.
So go ahead ladies and care a damn about people ” kuch tho log kahenge, logo ka kaam hai kehna “(People would always say something for that’s their job). Buy that pair of skinny jeans or the Little Black Dress you have been ogling at on Jabong/Myntra since ages, adding to your cart and then changing your mind and deleting it. Yes buy it right now, wear and flaunt it. You are awesome the way you are and no one, I repeat no one has the right to tell you what suits you. You decide for yourself. So yes Aunty the next time I see you in a mall in jeans, I will not look at you with an expression of amusement, but one of admiration and pride. Cheers to the Aunty in jeans.