August 17, 2006

"Misogynistic gay fashion designers"?

Oscar marshalls the evidence. It's an old stereotype -- I remember when it was the stock explanation for any disliked fashion -- but isn't "Project Runway" stoking it?

[Link fixed. Sorry, Oscar...]... [I mean it this time...]


Todd said...

He's right. Last night's show was a total bummer. Kayne, Robert, and Kors were a sad trio. And how sad it was to see Alison go. Imho, the most undeserved auf yet.

The straight Jeffry is also a classic misogynist. The quack comment last week and the feminazi (feminazi!) comment before.

To my mind, the best women's fashion is about admiring strength and assertiveness, not denigrating it.

James said...

Petronella Wyatt had the same complaint in the Spectator, [Designed for ridicule, May 25, 2002 ] She references The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, in which Danny Kaye, singing Anatole of Paris, ends with this verse:

And why do I sew
Each new chapeau
With a style they must look positively grim in
Strictly between us, (entre-nous)
I hate women.

jeff said...

I'll leave the same comment here I left there:

As far as I'm concerned, two things point to the fact that the female fashion industry hates women... and that women are masochists by accepting (and embracing) it:

1. Single number clothing sizes.
How can two people, one 5'0" and
the other 6'0" both be a "size 8?"

2. High heels.
Has ever a single non-drug
product caused so much damage -
and left it's users wanting more?

Jason said...

Ultimately, Alison was sacrificed for the sake of ratings. Truth is, she wasn't going to win, the behind-the-scenes judges knew it and went with the mysogynists. (Do you really believe those four judges make the final choice?)

At a deeper level, Alison was eliminated because she was gorgeous. Not just dolled up gorgeous, but one of those preternaturally pretty women who hadn't turned herself into a anorexic joke.

BTW, it isn't just gay men who run the fashion industry but women. Most editors of the top women's fashion magazines are women. The same magazines are read mostly by women. Us heterosexual men not only bear little blame, but deeply resent what these women and gay men have done to beauty; men like me who want to see more natural beauties like Alison are being left in the cold.

downtownlad said...

As if gay men hated women. Give me a break. Have they ever heard of fag hags . . .

Women aren't stupid. They're going to go with the fashion designers that design the best stuff. And if that happens to be a female (Vera Wang for example), they'll gladly buy her stuff.

I don't watch the show, but I think it's fairer to hold women designers to a higher standard when it comes to women's clothes. They know firsthand about this stuff. They shouldn't make the mistake of making clothes that make people look fat. And most consumers would agree. If they were designing clothes for a man, it would be right to hold the male designer to a higher standard.

Maxine Weiss said...

The best hairdresser was Warren Beatty in 'Shampoo'.

He made Julie Christie look like a million bucks!

Peace, Maxine

knoxgirl said...

OK, here's my take. Admittedly, a mixed bag...

(One quick observation at the outset: I noticed that this season has quite a few straight men. Now, I could be wrong on some of these, but I have always assumed that Bradley, Michael, Jeffrey and Vincent are straight. That's a lot of straight guys!)

I do think older women get a hard time on that show. Someone like Marla, or in this season, Stacey, is out at the first sign of weakness and then Vincent holds on forever. (I believe the only way Wendy made it to the final three in season one was that she served to play the uber-bitch.)

I do think straight men are quite forgiving of women... they do not see the miniscule flaws and tend to judge women much less harshly than other women or gay men. I think if you make the slightest attempt to look cleaned up and feminine--and not get too overweight!-- straight men are pretty easily satisfied.

I don't blame Kayne and Robert for ragging on Laura... she has made some pretty nasty comments about their taste, etc. I think she had it coming. However, some of the comments directed at her are arguably misogynistic.

I do think the "as a woman designer" thing was bogus, and Allison should NOT have been booted on those grounds.

And I am convinced that Jeffrey, who is straight, is the certified woman-hater on the show. His eyes become like death rays whenever some female does anything to stand up to him.

One day, doctoral dissertations will be written about this show. Maybe they're being written now.

If anybody writes their dissertation on Project Runway, they need to have their butt kicked. And that's coming from somebody who adores the show. The "gender politics" may be fascinating but please.

Ritu Gupta said...

Very nice post...