For the last three years, I have posted my own Rarely Wears Lipstick Women of The Year lists as a way to celebrate the wonderful women I have come into contact throughout the previous 12 months. It started as a personal version of The Guardian‘s Women of the Year list, but I began to realise last year that segregating the list by gender was rather limiting and also unnecessary. Over the years my feminism has been shaped by the people around me, with their opinions, beliefs and passions having a remarkable effect on how I view the world. This list began as an opportunity to spread the word, give thanks where they’re due and celebrate achievements of any kind, so why should I restrict who can be on that list? With that in mind, I give you my new and improved all genders list… the Rarely Wears Lipstick Super Humans of 2014!
- Callie Thorpe – There are days when I don’t know how I’d cope without Callie’s fantastic fashion blog and inspirational social media feeds in my life. Full of body positive joy and all round happiness, Callie tells the haters where to go and always looks so bloody stylish while doing it.
- Dr Suze Kundu – Officially a Materials Scientist, Teaching Fellow and Science Communicator, Suze is also an all round excellent human being and the place where science and ballet meet. If you’re in doubt that this is A Thing, check out her blog post on the physics of pointe work.
- Jess De Wahls – The wonderful Retex sculptures that Jess creates speak to me on so many levels. The recycled textiles appeal to my sustainable fashion side, the subject matter makes my feminism jump for joy… plus the execution is just so skilful! I fully expect to see one of these beauties snapped up by the National Portrait Gallery in the next few years.
- Gianna Goulding – One of those people who does awesome things in her spare time like running a feminist fringe festival, organising and DJing at 90s club night Fanny Pack and being a zombie on stage, dancing to Thriller. Not all at the same time though – that’d be even more exhausting!
- Dr Shaun Cole* – Writer of books, teacher of fashion theory and a fellow underwear fanatic, Shaun has been inspiring me since I first enquired about the MA History and Culture of Fashion course that he runs (now MA Fashion Cultures) and has been a wonderful tutor to many more people before and since. To be honest, I could write an entire post on how awesome this man is, but I have a list to be getting on with so you’ll just have to take my word for it.
- Jane Holt – The guardian of the LCF Archives and a constant source of inspiration to me, Jane is always brimming with enthusiasm and is an absolute pleasure to spend time with. I have her to thank for unlocking my love of archives and for helping me to start planning a research journey beyond my MA.
- Leng Montgomery – Quite rightly picked up by The Independent as One to Watch for their Rainbow List because of his fantastic work with Diversity Role Models, Leng is a multi talented social media guru, culinary expert and all round excellent human. I hope that 2015 brings him further recognition and the job of his dreams.
- Angela Friedman – A designer of some of the most exquisite lingerie and corsetry you will have laid eyes on, I had the pleasure of meeting Angela when she visited London a few months ago and we spent an evening chatting about lingerie, costume, dance and life. She’s one of the reasons I wish that New York and London were closer.
- Nick Campbell – Not only does Nick maintain a deliciously wordy blog about books and another about his Third Doctor marathon, but he’s also doing a PhD (in books rather than Doctor Who though, sadly). We used to work on the same team, but now we’re a whole floor away from each other which has taken some getting used to. My days need more Nick.
- The ID Board – As regular readers of this blog will know, I’ve been involved with Irreverent Dance since the start. It’s a not-for-profit organisation with a volunteer board who have had a spectacular year. Special thanks to Manda, Jo, Ali and Louise for making the Showcase weekend awesome. I’m looking forward to seeing Irreverent Studios open for business.
*Please don’t tell Shaun about this list just yet, lest he think that I am trying to sweet talk him into giving me a better mark for my dissertation!
Photo of Callie Thorpe via the From the Corners of the Curve Facebook page