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Monday, 30 January 2012

On White Tights and Insults

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Coat: Primark
Scarf: Republic
Bag: Cath Kidston (present)
Cardigan: New Look
Dress: Forever 21
Tights: New Look
Brogues: New Look
First things first: the quality of these photos depresses me. This was the best I could do in fading light, with no tripod, and with no DSLR. I seem to have forgotten how to use normal cameras, and it would not focus on the spot I was stood on. I'm still waiting for a reply from Canon about whether my camera can be fixed under warranty (even though it's only 6 months old), if it can't, I can't afford to have it fixed, so I don't know what I'll do.
But away from the depressing things. Outfit time now: when I saw this outfit of Annebeth's I remembered these shoes that I don't wear often enough, and decided I should give them a go with white tights, so here's the result. I'd left this dress in Newcastle over Christmas, so when I spotted it in my cupboard, I just had to put it on. Originally I planned on wearing the cardigan backwards so the open back was on show, but it was far too chilly for that!!
If you've read the title of this post, you'll realise I have a couple of things to talk about which are kind of related to this outfit. I read Lauren's post on anonymous commenters earlier and thought I was lucky not to have had any major problems with derogatory comments on my blog. But it wasn't until I left the house that I remembered the 'insults' I receive day-in day-out because of what I wear. I've spoken about this before, but because I live alone with Ben in a not-studenty area, it means I have to walk to and from uni by myself everyday. Apparently people take this as an opportunity to 'attack' me (not literally but I couldn't think of a better word!) - they seem to spot the vulnerability of a girl by herself, just minding her own business and walking with her head down. I know this because it has very rarely happened to me when I'm in a group - and when it has it's been because we're dressed for a night out or something. I cannot wear heels if I'm walking to uni alone. A skirt or dress with flats is enough to bring this on. I think of Newcastle as being a fairly fashion forward city - we now have our own fashion week, and Northumbria University does courses in fashion. Yet because I dress a little differently (and I mean I'm not crazy out there!) I get abused for it.
This rant has been brought on today especially because of a couple of incidents - maybe I'm just noticing it more because I've been at home for a couple of months, but it really hit me how awful people can be. As I was walking to uni, a group of girls (all students from Northumbria) behind me starting commenting amongst themselves on what I was wearing, until one decided to shout out: 'Hey, white legs! Can't afford yourself a tan?!', followed by the giggling of the whole group. That's nothing awful, but it's little things like that I get everyday. I know I draw attention to myself by dressing slightly out of what would be their comfort zone, but why should that bother them? It's not often I draw insults from girls around my age, and I thought today's outfit was a pretty plain one in my opinion.
When I was heading home from uni later, I got my usual line of abuse from a group of lads probably a little older than me. I was alone on that road and they were on the other side, so it was pretttyy obvious they were talking to/about me, and not quietly either. It went along the lines of: 'Look at that c**t!! Hey, if she doesn't look up when I shout at her, she's a c**t. HEY YOU...' at which point I just carried on walking with my head down, then the others began shouting it at me. I don't know what they think they'll achieve by doing that to be honest, but that sort of behaviour is something I encounter everyday, and the area in which I live isn't even a rough one. The most frequent thing I get is the beeping horns - at least 3 a day. Am I supposed to take this as a compliment?? I'm quite often in a big coat, scarf, no make up and messy hair, sometimes it's raining on me and I just look bedraggled - but because I am a woman and I'm by myself, and they're behind the wheel of car, it seems to mean they can do this. Why should it be like this? If I was dressed up and waving at cars or something, fair enough; but when I don't respond to them, they get worse, proving they're not doing it because they think I 'deserve' it (or whatever goes through their minds), they just want to make me feel vulnerable.
But don't think Newcastle is a bad city or anything, I know this happens everywhere but people don't often speak about it. It's difficult for me to dress the way I want to if I'm going to get this sort of attention, it's not what I do it for.
Love,

14 comments:

  1. That's just aweful! I think you look great, maybe those kids are just jealous of your creativity and sense of style? Don't let them bring you down! I've never experienced such insults but I'm familiar with the beeping horns, especially from truck drivers. It's like they're going crazy the minute they see a girl driving a bike or walking alone, and even not wearing a skirt or something. It's just sad and very childish. We all laughed and pointed at someone when we were mean teenagers, but once you're in college you should be mature enough to not react like that. Apparently some people think they're still in high school... xx

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  2. Oh Sian! I'm sending hugs! XOXO

    It is just awful! No one has the right to abuse anyone with words or anything else. I had no idea that something like this can go on at uni! I'm from Poland and people usually STARE when they see my outfits when I go back home. They may comment, but it's rather like "she's crazy dressed" and it's not shouting! Of course it depends on whom you encounter. Here in UK I live in London and people honestly don't care. I guess they're too busy with everything to stop and shout a rant. I am so sorry it has happened to you. Just believe in yourself! You honestly are 100% better than they are. X

    mademoiselle-lala.com

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  3. You look lovely and I wish you all the best, really!

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  4. Oh wow, that's awful. Especially the comment about tights and not having a tan, what are they-stupid? I bet that most of them looked like carrots themselves. I think it's repectable for a woman to wear skirts and dresses and not rely on jeans all the time. So these girls probably knew nothing about being well-dressed and probably had no manners. I think it's sad that people can be just mean to a random person on the street.
    I hope that you still continue to look absolutely lovely and ingnore those stupid immature comments!
    -Piia
    Bowtie Diary

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  5. first of all, my caps lock decided not to work atm, so sorry for all-small-caps. it hurts my eyes.

    i just discovered your blog yesterday and bookmarked it immediately. i really like your style and find it inspiring. those stupid people you had to encounter are just sad w/ low self-esteems who need to grow up and get some manners immediately. please ignore those ignorants and continue inspiring people.

    i don't like wearing jeans/trousers and usually opt for dresses/skirts. and i won't stop wearing them although i sometimes get random comments from strangers like the ones you unfortunately received. because it is not worth to feel bad even the tiniest bit for people like that.

    lastly, i don't have a tan and i haven't got struck by lightning or my world hasn't crushed and burned as many people believe it would.

    all the best.

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  6. say whhhaaaat? Where exactly do you live in Newcastle?! I went to university at Newcastle and never ever had such a bad time. Sly remarks here and there (from Northumbria students, or 'ra' Newcastle students) and the odd groups of guys giving me hassle, but never so often as this. (I guess I did live in the student-y areas though) I'm sorry you have to deal with this, Sian.

    I did an outfit photo with my white tights and floral dress recently :)

    And I so have that Cath Kidston design in a rain mac. You look great. xx

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  7. lovely, florals look so pretty against white tihgts

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  8. I'm so sorry this is happening to you! It is not right!

    When I was in college and my friend and I would walk down the street to get something to eat, during the day mind you, cars would honk at us and it is degrading. People fear things that they don't understand and therefore attack it. No famous creative person ever reached success without criticism. I think you always have great outfits and your style is awesome. Keep being you and ignore the little jerks. Either that or give them the finger ;)

    xx
    Kat

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  9. Love how you work the white tights! They're adorable with the floral prints. I love your coat too. :)

    And sorry to hear about the insults that you get. :(( I personally think you look fabulous. Some people just never grow up... =_=

    -Evelina
    effervescentevelina.blogspot.com

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  10. well I think you look lovely. I cant believe those girls were saying that to you. Some people never mature past high school.

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  11. I still really think it's absolutely crazy that you get such reactions to your way of dress! You dress in wonderful, neat, ladylike way. You aren't overly exposed, dressed in anything garish or revealing or anything. Most of the comments from women are just because they're jealous or insecure about themselves. They probably wish they could have the guts to wear what they want like you do. And those dudes are probably trying to just make themselves feel manly and tough at the expense of another. It really sucks you have to put up with that though, blah. I'd have probably freaked out at the guys though. I carry a knife with me everywhere I go so I tend to be a little more ballsy when I get yelled at hah. I was walking home from the bar, at about 2am, on a very busy road. I was covered literally from my neck down to my ankles, and yet, a man hurriedly parked across the street, ran across 4 lanes of intense traffic and then tried to solicit me for sex. Awesome huh? I get it was 2am but seriously?!

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  12. You look great, dear, and white tights are cool. I occasionally get abuse and racist remarks and it's very intimidating but I hope you can keep holding your head high!

    http://undercoverdressuplover.blogspot.com/

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  13. That is terrible indeed! Women/girls can be so much nastier than guys. I love your outfit on this page and I think the rest of woman-kind could stand to dress more like you. This outfit isn't "plain", it's "classy", and that's something direly missing from the streets these days (Celynne put it very well in her comment). My wife dresses similarly to you (nice dresses and tights - yes, even white!), and if I ever heard come girl (or guy) comment on her appearance like the remarks you've gotten, they'd be getting an earful from me.

    As for the honking from guys in cars, yes, I believe (perhaps naively?) that those are supposed to be compliments. So at least there are some out there who appreciate your style, to counter those who are far too rude to keep negative comments to themselves.

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