Inspiration (or, why Lil’ Kim is my confidence hero.)

I have been quite unwell recently, and have subsequently spent a large chunk of my time watching gloriously bad trash television. E! and the Style Network have become an unusual crutch in my down time. And when I say crutch, I mean hopeless addiction that may never be cured. Because I don’t currently have the mental capacity for anything too thought-provoking, I have seen both of these channels as beacons of entertainment. It’s basically makeover shows and celebrity happenings, as far as I can tell. Chewing gum for the mind most definitely. That being said, I did learn something today.

I was watching a recap of Joan Rivers bashing celebrities for what they wear. Joan being Joan, I can’t hate her – she’s caustic and cynical and downright mean sometimes, but there’s something about her i find truly endearing. It made me think, though. How often do I go out and mentally note other people’s clothing/demeanour? I know that I’ve done it before. I remember thinking “Oh no, she should NOT be wearing that!” as someone walked by me at the shops once.

And now it hits me how much this attitude SUCKS. What right do I (or anyone for that matter) have on saying what a person should or should not be wearing? Why are fashion “rules” so deeply ingrained in me?  Have I just been watching too much Trinny and Susannah? Is society to blame? Family? The media? Am *i* to blame?



Lil’ Kim has graced many a “worst dressed” list during her years as a celebrity. And I don’t think I’d ever wear an ensemble like the one above, but fuckdammit! She should be commended for having the courage to wear what she wants, and not what someone told her to wear. (If that’s the case, which let’s assume it is for the sake of this argument.) It’s fucking ridiculous to judge anyone based on what they’re wearing – if I do that then I’m no better than someone judging me because I’m fat.

So tell me, readers – what’s your opinion? Have you ever judged someone based on what they’re wearing? And are celebrities asking for it, since they are the ones who put themselves in the limelight? What about people who post their own pictures on a blog? Leave your thoughts below.

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  • ashleybrook

    First, I don't necessarily believe that just because someone can show off their body or wear an ensemble like that always means that they are confident. Lil Kim could have just as easily been feeling very down about herself and like no one cares about her and thought, “Hey I know what will grab some attention!” I personally know lots of women who flaunt their body because they feel like that is all they have to offer.

    To answer your questions, I don't judge the *people* for what they wear, but I have judged the actually ensemble. I think everyone has at least once in their life and if they say that they haven't, I might call BS on that. Anyways, some celebs have dressed really outrageously, strangely, and just flat out horrible…but I don't think any less of that person for it. You can have an opinion of what someone is wearing and yet still maintaining respect for the human being wearing it. Joan Rivers, however, is different story.

  • lilacsigil

    I used to be all judgey but part of FA for me was letting go of that. It is really, really good for me to not judge other people, especially other women. If someone was on a blog and asked for an opinion, that's a different situation.

    I feel a bit differently about celebrities at public events (not when they're being followed around while they try to walk their dog or whatever!) because that is an event where they're presenting themselves and they are well-paid for doing so (as part of celebrity culture, not for that specific event). Even so, I try to be very wary about body judging as opposed to fashion interest – it's hard to find a body-positive place in a celebrity culture and I haven't quite managed that yet. Even relatively positive, clothes-focused sites like gofugyourself still go with “eat a sandwich!” and “her body doesn't suit this dress” pretty frequently.

  • http://www.tabayag.com Sarah

    I just love her perky little boob – I'm too tired to think about anything else haha

  • Sophie

    Of course I judge people by how they dress! Unlike my body, my outfit every day is a choice I make and a decision to represent myself in a certain way.
    But then again, maybe I judge people differently. Because when I see Lil' Kim's outfit, i think DAMNNNN SHE'S SO COOL. same with other “worst dressed” girls like Tilda Swinton (whom I adore). I mean, they just have this wonderful confidence that goes with every crazy outfit.

    But then again, when I see someone even fatter than 260 pound me wearing a skintight leggings and tshirt combo that outlines every bulge and crease I know it's best to hide, yea, I judge.

  • WhyyesitisKate

    I think Lil' Kim is an inspiration. I have often felt that her public pushing of boundaries has helped make more room for the rest of us.

    As for the judging question, Oh my, yes. I judge all the time. I find, though, that has less to do with what someone looks like and more to do with my own set of aesthetics. There are things I like to see (like long, smooth lines) and I tend to be most judgmental of outfits that make people look like they've been built out of legos (or, that they made their shirt with parts of a curtain and a hot glue gun.) But I also think that, no matter what your size, at least half of how you look is how you feel about how you look. Lil' Kim looks amazing because she is totally comfortable and unapologetic about walking around in a unitard and a pasty. She looks like she thinks she looks great. And, even if you don't like her, you have to give her props for that.

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