As a leader of young females in the sport of gymnastics, this inspires me to consider what influences and shapes girls into the woman they are going to become. This has led to my enthusiasm for designing to empower women, not only for my graduate collection but in future collections, as female empowerment contributes to the fight against gender discrimination.
I often use my experiences and interests to inspire design, with my collection as an example of this, combining my interest in coaching and design, in order to create while considering the effects of fashion on society. Inspiring courage and self-belief is important to me as a designer to influence the wearer’s mindset and build up impactful role models in society who empower others. I aim to build a future in the industry that continues to reach and support modern females and future generations, through design’s impact on the mind, to enhance female strength in society and gender equality.
Designing to empower females provides women with the encouragement they are often denied growing up, positively impacting society and the economy by improving gender equality. This collection was inspired by the impact of role models and how the armour that is fashion can add to this. The consumer is an influential role model to female peers and younger generations which assists her ability to empower others along with the impact of design.
Design elements focus on empowering the mindset. Experimental draping inspired by powerful gymnastics photography brought a personal touch to creating silhouette along with the uniform of working women of the war. Chain-inspired details represent the restrictive gender-stereotypes to be broken. Sustainability is considered through fabric choice and designing staple trend-less pieces. The colour palette is inspired by colour psychology identifying colours which enhance empowering qualities and emotions.
I designed a print for my collection which is inspired by my visual analysis of the female muscular system and words of a protest sign. From my research, I discovered that many girls and women drop out of sport due to the fear of being shamed for looking too muscly. In the fight against this gender stereo-type that girls can’t be “too strong” I wanted to create a print which represents and celebrates not only physical female strength but also mental strength. Therefore, I incorporated words from a young girl’s protest sign, found in my research, which reads ‘we are teaching our girls to tear down your walls’ in order to represent how female empowerment fights the barriers of self-doubt which women are often raised around due to restrictive gender stereo-types of society.