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What we talk about when we talk about pockets - if you can't be witty, then at least be bombastic — LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
kyle cassidy

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What we talk about when we talk about pockets [Apr. 29th, 2013|08:33 am]
kyle cassidy
[mood |accomplishedaccomplished]
[music |judas priest: hell bent for leather]

This post is about pockets, feminism, design, autonomy and common sense. Please feel free to repost or link to it if you know people who'd benefit from the discussion.

A few weeks ago trillian_stars and I were out somewhere and she asked "Oooh, can I get a cup of coffee?" and I thought "why are you asking me? You don't need permission." But what I discovered was that her clothes had no pockets, so she had no money with her.

Mens clothes have pockets. My swimsuits have pockets. All of them do, and it's not unusual, because, what if you're swimming in the ocean and you find a fist full of pirate booty in the surf? You need somewhere to put it. Men are used to carrying stuff in their pockets, you put money there, you put car keys there. With money and car keys come power and independence. You can buy stuff, you can leave. The idea of some women's clothes not having pockets is baffling, but it's worse than that -- it's patriarchal because it makes the assumption that women will either carry a handbag, or they'll rely on men around them for money and keys and such things. (I noticed this also when Neil & Amanda were figuring out where her stuff had to go because she had no pockets.) Where do women carry tampons? Amanda wondered, In their boyfriend's pockets, Neil concluded.)

I then noticed that none of trillian_stars' running clothes had pockets. Any pockets. Which is (as they always say on "Parking Wars") ridikulus. Who leaves the house with nothing? (It's not a rhetorical question, I actually can't think of anybody).

We fixed some of this by getting this runners wrist wallet from Poutfits on Etsy -- it holds money, ID, keys ... the sort of stuff you'd need. Plus you can wipe your nose on it. It solves the running-wear problem, but not the bigger problem.




Clickenzee to Embiggen!



The bigger problem is that people who design women's fashions are still designing pants and jackets that have no pockets. In fact, this jacket we got last December has ... no pockets. It's not a question of lines or shape, it's a question of autonomy.



Clickenzee to Embiggen



So I'm asking my friends who design women's clothes to consider putting pockets in them, they can be small, they can be out of the way, they can be inside the garment, but space enough to put ID, and cash and bus tokens. And maybe a phone. (And if you can design a surreptitious tampon stash, I'm sure Neil & Amanda & a lot of other people would appreciate it as well.)





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[User Picture]From: ashbet
2013-05-01 06:02 am (UTC)
Every year, in the DC area, the local Goth/punk/etc. community runs an event called "Freak Day at King's Dominion." A bunch of us hit the nearest amusement park in full regalia, in the middle of a Virginia summer, a lot of us with our kids, wanting to be able to go on rides and hit the water park but still wear stompy boots. (It's kind of fun to hit an amusement park en masse -- same concept behind Bats Day at Disney!)

I had a lunchbox-ish sized fabric purse with an adjustable strap and a snap closure (later adapted to have a zip inside so stuff wouldn't fall out) and a big skull on the front. I would load up my necessities (sunscreen, lipstick, meds, phone) in it and then wrap the strap around my hips and pull it tight.

Instant fanny pack, but with a little added cachet ;)

-- A (who has never gotten over enjoying playing dress-up . . . and usually carries a purse the size of a toddler, which I refer to as my Apocalypse Preparedness Kit And Portable Pharmacy. Pockets wouldn't fit all my needs, because I have a chronic illness and have to actually carry quite a bit of stuff related to it around with me . . . it's actually CONVENIENT when I'm in my wheelchair and I can hang stuff off the back, although I need to be sure to have a companion so that somebody doesn't try to purse-snatch me -- however, said purse-snatcher would be unpleasantly surprised to find out that I CAN walk, at some speed if need be, because the chair is because of a cardiac issue and not the usual walking impairment!)
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