GUEST POST: Clara Bow and the Flappers

NOTE: This is a scheduled guest post. It was written by Catelyn B. Thanks1, Catelyn!

One of my many inspirations is Clara Bow and the Flapper style. She inspired me to get a bob (I feel so much like a Flapper now. For those of you too chicken to get a bob, do it, and then give your hair to Locks of Love!). She was also a wonderful actress. In her movie, It, she suggestively stares at her handsome boss. When the director asked her what she was doing she said, “the first look was for the lovesick dames in the audience, the second look, that passionate stuff, was for the boys an’ their poppas, and the third look…well, just about the time all them old ladies’re shocked an’ scandalized by the passionate part, they suddenly see the third look, change their minds ’bout me havin’ naughty ideas, an’ go home thinkin’ how pure an’ innocent I was.” Clara Bow rose from the slums of Brooklyn to become the ‘It Girl’ of Hollywood.

I love the Flapper style partly because of the Flappers themselves. They were these badass ladies who drank, smoke, drove their cars super fast, wore their hems high and lots of make up, and bobbed their hair of course! The other thing I love about the Flappers is their well known dresses with the little strings of fabric coming off of them that spin when you dance (I rented one of these to wear to my 9th grade homecoming dance). When you are brave enough to get a bob, completing the Flapper look is really easy. Dry your hair a little bit at the ends. If you have really straight hair, all you have to do is put phomollient in your hair right as you get out of the shower. Don’t comb your hair! Dry your hair with a diffuser. Hold the diffuser on each side of your head for a few seconds. Get a cool scarf and BOOM! Flapper style!

GUEST POST: A Thrift Store

NOTE: The following essay is a scheduled guest post. The author, Ruby, is not the same person who writes this blog.

“A thrift store. Somewhere in Portland,” I said proudly to my friend today. She had questioned where I got my skirt. I guess I was proud to label my floral skirt as used, as if it was some sort of prestigious award. She nodded and smirked, as if my purchase had been predicted. Like I was expected to be shopping at hipster’s sanctuary.

It didn’t bug me. Maybe I was happy that I got the chance to tell my friends that you can shop at thrift stores, even in grade six. They had always talked about how much they “love vintage” or “need to go to” to a used clothing store. Then why don’t you?

The reason I shop at thrift stores is similar to any other Quirky Teen Blogger. I like the clothes. That’s it, period. Does it matter that they used to brush against someone’s skin? Does it really matter that they look older?
Yeah, sure, it’s cheaper than other stores. Does that matter? Am I going to buy clothes for the sake of bragging to friends, saying things like, “these pants cost $200?” I don’t mind people dressing the way they want. That’s what we should do every day. Don’t dress to impress, dress to be comfortable and stylish in your own opinion, and not to live up to the standards of your peers.

I felt comfortable in my plain-white tee and floral skirt today. I liked the way I looked, too. Isn’t that happiness? It’s nice when people agree that you look great, but shouldn’t your satisfaction be your satisfaction? Many other people have raised this argument. Diversity and fashion have become such cliché topics; Dress the way you want! You shouldn’t care what other people think! But it’s hard not to care and let go of other people’s approach of fashion. I know I can care.

Am I giving mixed messages?

I suppose my point is that I should be able to dress my way. My fashion is my statement, not a retweet of someone else’s. And no, one shouldn’t have to care what other people think of them. But that’s hard.

If I wear, for example, my Black Flag tee shirt, I don’t want people to be uncomfortable with the devil smiling at them on my chest. I don’t want people to feel gross or uneasy because of what I look like, but what if I don’t feel the same way? If I take other people’s thoughts and opinions into consideration, am I betraying myself?

But this is a problem we as individuals have to overcome- what we look like through other people’s eyes. And we can do this by finding people like us; as Tavi Gevinson put it, “a similar group of weirdoes.” That quote is my life. Other people who dress the way they want, other people who understand comfort and individuality when it comes to fashion, are my life.
Diversity is such a blissful thing! You’ve heard it before, but diversity is what makes us interesting; diversity is motivation.

I am finished my schpeel, that’s it, that’s all.

GUEST POST: Feminism Essay by Narita

NOTE: This is a guest post, written by reader Narita, while I am away for the summer. To read more from Narita, visit her own blog at http://theteenidle.blogspot.nl/.

Hello, lovely readers of Ruby’s blog. I’m today’s guest writer. My name is Narita and I am fourteen years old. I’ll be a high school junior after this summer break… And, as a feminist, my few years high school have given me some pretty weird experiences.

I’ve been in dropout recovery during my sophomore year, because of bullying. For those unfamiliar with dropout recovery, I had two teachers, always the same ones, and they were always watching me and my peers. There was one woman- her name doesn’t matter- I thought she was horrible. One day she brought in ‘cupcakes’, and believe me, they were more a pile of cereal than a cupcake. It was an insult to cupcakes of the world to call that pile of cereal a cupcake. But, as she said, it was a ‘light cupcake, because I’ve got to think about my diet.’ I love food- I love cupcakes. I don’t ever diet because I care about health and I don’t think diets are healthy or necessary. She disagreed.

“Being skinny is one important goal of a woman’s life,” she said. YEAH RIGHT, I thought. SO, I’M NOT A WOMAN ANYMORE, I GUESS? I identify as a woman. I biologically am a woman. I feel like a woman, and I think any of those things is enough to ‘be a woman’. You don’t suddenly lose your once you decide to eat real cupcakes, instead of cereal piles in a paper foil because ‘It keeps you skinny.’ Oh, another quote: “Girls don’t fart.” I fart. So do you. Everyone farts, and I demand my right to do so.

My junior friends all told me about a teacher that proclaimed herself a feminist. This teacher also made everyone meditate during class, which likely didn’t help her popularity much, either.
“She’s way too into feminism,” they said. I never discuss feminism with friends who don’t identify as feminists, so I couldn’t say anything else than ‘why?’. She changed tests. Every ‘he’ became a ‘she’. So questions like ‘’John and her friends were riding a bike’’ and “Carl didn’t mind sharing her money” weren’t uncommon.

‘That’s not feminism,’ I said. “It’s the opposite; it’s sexism. It’s not equality at all.” They didn’t understand how I knew those things since I never discussed feminism with them, but this woman is one reason that a good part of my school hates feminists. Thank you very much, Ms. I Don’t Even Know Your Name But You’re Not A Feminist.

My classmates- most of them are fifteen, sixteen. I’m one of the younger ones, probably “the weird kid with the tear-print blouse”. They don’t get me, I guess. I’m used to questions like “Why are you wearing that? Guys don’t find that attractive at all.”

It’s not my goal in high school to be prom queen or something. I don’t need a boyfriend; I’d rather be friends with guys actually. I like how I dress. I don’t want a boyfriend if I have to change to get one. Personally, my goal in high school is to have fun and end up graduating, because the latter is kind of the point, anyway.
I have one friend who smokes at a regular basis. She’s fifteen and therefore not allowed to, but her school doesn’t really care about her health or the legal aspect. They care more about if she’ll be able to get pregnant. Who says she, an honor student with straight A’s and a university dream, wanted to get pregnant at all? She’s more like a career woman, but her counselor decided it was more important for her to have a baby. This is why it’s important that people recognize that feminism is still necessary, and that feminists are for equality alone.

I asked friends for examples of sexism they experienced in high school, or how people have reacted to feminism or feminists. A freshman friend replied: ‘Femiwhat?’ It isn’t spoken about. Feminism may as well not exist, as far as our school is concerned. Women may as well not exist. In history, we learn that “somewhere last century there was a women who gave us voting rights or something”. If this is what we get in high school, how do they expect us to grow into responsible and independent adults?