The Sisterhood Series:
Welcome to the Sisterhood of Style
At a certain point in our lives, at that no more f’s to give point, women stop dressing for men.* We dress for ourselves. And frankly, we dress for other women.
When another woman notices those bright red flats or that cute boho top you got on sale, there’s an unmistakable pride. There’s a knowing look shared between you. You are part of the sisterhood. You are part of the same tribe.
My style has evolved through the years, just as I have. In my teens, I embraced all that was 90s and emulated Claire Danes in My So-Called Life. Her hair was EVERYTHING.
In college, I dressed for comfort in the Boston cold or for partying. There wasn’t much in between.
When I relocated to Los Angeles in the early aughts to start my career, I found myself vacillating wildly between styles. There was the super casual girl working in production, the professional girl when grown-up clothes were essential, and my East Hollywood hipster partying attire.
Over time, my dress size changed and so did my style. I wanted to portray the more professional woman I was becoming (or hoping to become -- after all, they say dress for the job you want). I wore what complimented my new body and my evolving life. I was attempting to carve out my identity.
After I married and had a baby, there was my maternity leave style. I wore so many leggings and long tanks that my friends almost staged an intervention. But when your child has the potential to exorcist your shirt, you stop trying.
When I returned to work, I appreciated that I actually had to dress up to leave the house. That’s when I really began to build my style identity. And I think that’s when I most appreciated being part of this fashionable sisterhood.
You’ve put in the effort. You love that dress because of the deal you got on it, the cut on your body, or the experience of buying it when you were out with your best friend. And now, someone else gets it. Sure, I like when my husband notices that I look good. But that’s just a bonus on top of the nod of approval received from my fellow women.
My clothes are more than clothes. Sometimes they’re a statement . . . literally. I own a lot of feminist shirts. Sometimes clothes have the ability to lift me up. They give me confidence to kill that presentation or job interview. Sometimes they act as goals. I was so excited to fit into these embroidered overalls after months of working out.
Clothes can be a conversation starter between strangers or new friends, something I found especially important as a new mom. They can give you comfort when you’re dealing with anxiety or depression, or just aren’t feeling comfortable in your own body. There’s nothing quite like wrapping yourself up in an oversized sweater and retreating inward.
A vintage dress tells a story. A purse is not just a purse; just ask women who shared personal stories about their first Kate Spade bag after her tragic death.
The perfect black flats are a myth worth pursuing. I’m still on a journey to find the exact right ones. @ me if you’ve got some recs.
And just like you might remember the song that was playing at that key moment in life, you may remember what you were wearing. I can still tell you, more than a decade later, about the hoodie I wore when I met my husband.
There is a reason that The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants hinged on an article of clothing. We all wish there really was a pair of jeans we could love and share with our besties, no matter our size or style. I have a sweater that my college roommates and I traded liberally throughout our time living together. It’s a retro bright green cardigan. It no longer fits but I refuse to get rid of it, no matter how irrational. It was our own version of the “traveling pants.”
There’s often this portrayal in the media that loving clothes is frivolous or materialistic. And I doubt it’s coincidental that this is mostly directed at women. But there’s more to the way we dress than meets the eye. Simply watch an episode of Queer Eye on Netflix where someone’s entire mindset shifts with a new outfit, or binge any season of The Mindy Project. Hey, one of the biggest tools used to subjugate women in The Handmaid’s Tale is the wardrobe they’re forced into wearing. Clothes can transform a person’s psyche or convey a character’s personality. Read Teen Vogue or all the think-pieces centering on Meghan Markle’s wedding dress for more evidence.
A shoe is not just a shoe. A dress is not just a dress. Clothes are powerful. They send a statement. They connect us instantly to the women around us. They’re an invitation into a tribe. A life-long sisterhood of style.
*Or for the attention of whomever, no matter gender, they are trying to attract
Amber Moon Contributor: Ally Weinberg
Day Job: Reality Television Exec