Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The "popular" Figure

You all, I am sure, are familiar with what is the "popular" figure for today's culture is. I am not sure what the real name for it is, but in my house we refer to it as "the stick", I prefer to refer to them now as "flappers." This is someone with little to know curve in their figure. Not that this is a bad thing, everyone is different and everyone is beautiful no matter what. Honestly can you imagine how boring society would be if we all looked alike, it is the differences in people that make them interesting. 

The whole preference thing in society is what bothers most people out there. We are told that we are not pretty because we are not up to the media's standards. Also that men only like one kind of figure. Really? Like I said above it is our differences that make us interesting. If all men only like one kind of figure, then men are really not very interesting. It really annoys me that people think that everyone fits into this box of sameness. They seem to forget that people are individuals, who all think different, look different, and act different from one another. 

Let us take a trip through fashion history for a moment to look at what was the popular figure in Victorian England. If any of you are familiar with Laura Ingalls Wilder (may I ask who isn't?) then you know that Laura wore a corset, as did ma. They didn't wear corsets to get stick strait figures. They wore them to have and hourglass figure. That was what was considered beautiful back then. I have to feel for all those girls who didn't have an hourglass figure(the sticks), it must have been as hard for them back then, as it is for us those of us to day who have more curve. 

Then there would have been the Edwardian period in which so far as I can tell, the popular figure stayed the same.

And then here comes the roaring 20s with the stick, or as I call it flapper figure. Really as far as I can tell this is the first time as figure with little to no curves seems to have been popular. maybe it was because of the rebel culture of the time. There were a lot of changes in this time, especially in the fashion world. I mean there is a dramatic difference. from what was worn before, and what was worn then, comparatively these people were showing a lot of skin. And if you have read Cheaper by the Dozen you will know how much a hot topic this was for families. (I am sorry the book lover in me cannot help but make book references) 

I really have nothing against any of these two figures. What I am upset with is that it seems only one of them can be popular at a time. Why is that? Does it really have to be that way? Why do we have to have only one at a time? I also don't like being presented with what I should be. Who are they that they can tell me what I should look like? If they really have an issue they should talk to God because he made us all different, and not everyone follows the fashion trends to the letter. In fact I think it would be unhealthy to do follow them that closely. 

It really is actually unhealthy for us on so many levels. First physically. Laura Ingalls wore a corset, the Victorians wore corsets, corsets have been used for many many years. Was it really healthy for women to squeeze  their rib cage in? For them to make their waists so small. And look at our own times, girls starve themselves. People do this for the sake of fashion. Is it really worth the harm we do to are bodies to look like those fake pictures that the media shows us and tells us we need to look like to be pretty? I don't think so. We don't have to look like what the media tells us, because who are they to define what pretty is? Everyone is pretty in their own unique way. 

Here we are at the 1950s where The hourglass is back. Is there really anything new? It just seems to be always the same body types cycling through. Does having the "perfect" figure really matter? or are there more profitable things that we can think about. The point really of this whole post is to say that it really does not matter what the media thinks we should look like, because the media is always changing. And what are people really going to remember about us? That we were one of the most gorgious people they had ever met? The things that people are really going to remember about us is how we treated others, confidence, and manners. Really if someone if confident, nice, polite, and treats other well it makes a world of difference in how we see them. 


PS. I do know I skipped a lot of decades in history, but I didn't think I could fit them all in. 


  1. The same thing happens with hair. Many years ago I decided to just embrace what I have and to not worry about if that is "in style."

    Mimi the Flapper :)

  2. Yes I have noticed that too. I have to admit that I love your hair.


  3. Such an interesting post! Today I believe is even worse with Tv/movies/internet/magazines to spread a single figure to the whole world. Not to mention Photoshop who creates literary unreal standards.

    Funny how Mimi mentioned hair. I was going to mention the standardization of hair cuts. Have you noticed how many actresses have that super short haircut now (Michelle Williams, Carey Mulligan, Anne Hathaway and others)?

    Sorry for the long comment - loved your blog!