How are people dressing when in lockdown and isolation situations? How is this different to the way they dressed before? Has it affected their sense of self? This project aims to shine a light on those changes and reveal some of the many and varied personal stories relating to fashion and dress in 2020. Today’s interview is with Cynthia H, a crossdresser living and blogging in Canada. Cynthia says: “I have always been interested in women’s fashion as far back as I can clearly remember. As I grew older I spent a lot of time really hating myself for feeling this way until I met my wife who really helped me come out of my shell. Currently, I am not under a complete lockdown. Due to the fact that I am still an essential service worker I am going out, but my wife has had to leave because she already has a compromised immune system. I am self-isolating on the weekends when not working, and this has lead to my ability to dress a lot more that I normally would.”
1) Can you describe what your personal style was like before lockdown?
I would say my style consisted mainly of what I considered the classics, long dresses, and skirts with nice blouses. Nothing too short or revealing. Some may call it conservative I guess.
2) How would you describe your style now?
As much as I still really like a nice fancy dress I find myself gravitating towards more easy-going. Jeans and a fancier blouse just seem to be more what I have been reaching for. Dress and heels are nice but not for doing the dishes or cleaning up after the cats.
3) What is your daily routine for getting dressed to remain at home? If you don’t have one, why is that?
I usually try to have an outfit already picked out in my mind before heading to the closet. It has also given me the extra time that I really needed to work on my makeup skills which up to this point were really only in small instances.
4) Has your approach to fashion and style changed as a result of the current situation?
I find it does not need to be an all or nothing situation now. For me at least, it used to be I had to go all the way (meaning the clothes, makeup, shoes, and jewellery) or nothing at all. Now I am happy to just slip into anything and maybe put a small splash of colour on my face and call it good.
5) Thinking back through what you have worn since you’ve been staying at home, what has been your favourite item of clothing and why?
I have a pair of jeans I bought last summer and I have to say they are the most comfortable pair of pants I have ever owned hands down. And the best thing about jeans, in my opinion, is that you can dress them down for working around the house or dress them up for a semi-classy night on the town.
If you’d like to take part in the project yourself, you can find all the information you need in the blog post entitled ‘Lockdown Fashion: an exploration of dressing at home in 2020‘ dated 9th April 2020.