By Sam Royka - Staff Writer
When women went to work during World War II, they did so with cherry-red lips. This became a symbol of their resilience in uncertain times. Now, this resilience is as important as ever while the world faces a global pandemic.
Makeup, even though it may feel frivolous, is central to many individuals’ identities.
During a time such as this, rituals you can do at home become even more important than before. Red lipstick is one such ritual.
Heather Cahill, a Rose State alumni, was sent home on March 18 and has been working from home ever since. As a high-risk individual, she has left home only four times in the past month. She shared some of the things that are keeping her sane during this time.
“The power of small rituals, like putting on makeup (and being bold in the comfort of your space until you're ready to be bold everywhere), provides multiple benefits such as routine, and continuity of self,” Cahill provided via email. “But what has really helped is the ability to work in the yard and get sunshine. And moving. Exercise has helped more than I thought it would. It provides routine, and endorphins. And a sense of productivity.”
Routine can become a great comfort to lean into during this stressful time. We also had a chance to speak with Rose State Professor Dr. Sheri Jewell-Fleming.
“Self-care is often the first plan of attack that any counselor or therapist or even your physician will recommend,” Jewell-Fleming said. “Usually the key thing with self-care is taking time for yourself, and technology tends to get in the way of that. There is this thing — I call it ‘Super Walmart Syndrome,’ where we think that life on everybody’s basis is a 24/7 operative. Like I can email my boss at 11 o’clock, I can email my professor at 1 in the morning, you know, I can do this stuff and I expect answers, like, now. And not everybody is wired that way to understand that business is conducted on business time, and so we get used to this instant gratification that technology can succeed a little bit, but what was supposed to be something that gave us more free time to take care of ourselves has now sort of eaten every bit of our free time. The key thing is just recognizing that.”
She likened the internet to casinos and malls.
“When you go to a mall, there [are] no clocks anywhere, and casinos, there [are] no clocks, there [are] not even windows there because they don’t want people to know how much time they’re spending in these places,” she said. “Because if you stay there longer, then you spend more money obviously, and the internet is a lot like that, where you sit down to do something and the next thing you know four hours have gone by.”
She emphasized the importance of unplugging.
“There are several studies that are going on out there that are showing that things like social media, screen time, they’re making us more anxious, more upset, and in some cases even more depressed,” Jewell-Fleming said.
Developing a routine and making time to unplug from our devices provides more time to reconnect to the real world, and that can be comforting during this stressful time. Due to the recommended social distancing practices, it can also be difficult if you live alone.
However, she had some suggestions about positive habits you can develop at home. She mentioned indoor exercise, journaling and gratitude journaling, as well as spending time in nature.
There are many important facets of what we can do to recenter. However, if the many options feel overwhelming, that’s okay — if you start from the ground up, you can do anything.
On starting from the ground up and beginning self-care with small daily rituals, that might just be where red lipstick comes in.
A hundred years ago when suffragettes Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Charlotte Perkins Gilman loved red lipstick because it shocked men, protestors followed in suit, staining their lips red as a symbol of rebellion, liberation and freedom.
This power and femininity, the ‘modern woman,’ is what flappers were all about, so they too donned the red.
Red lipstick took the world by storm, and during the Second World War, it had another moment in the sun. Adolf Hitler detested lipstick, banning it in Germany. Therefore, in America and other allied countries, it became a symbol of patriotism and resisting fascism.
Right around that time is when Marylin Monroe’s stylist picked up the crimson shade, helping her to create a look that would remain the stuff of legend. With Monroe’s involvement, red lipstick picked up the symbolism of sensuality and Hollywood glam.
So why is this so important now?
It all comes down to one word: power.
While we all practice social distancing, work from home (many of us with children), and see panic-inducing notifications daily, it can feel overwhelming. Disruption of the daily routine can make it seem like your world has been thrown into chaos.
Rituals like putting on red lipstick in the bathroom mirror can both provide a moment away from the roar of things that must be attended to and an effective personal reset button.
If you do not feel your best, you will not perform your best, so self-care is more important now than ever. There is nothing quite the same as applying a generations-old symbol of personal power that fits neatly around every word you say.
When you go out your red lipstick and most of your face will be hidden by a mask. At home, however, it serves as a powerful symbol that carries with it generations of resistance and resilience.
And even on occasional trips outside of the house, eyeliner has its own reset button potential. Eyeliner sales are up as consumers express themselves, finding power and strength in small personal rituals that can change their entire mindset.
By Laura Huskey - Staff Writer
From the bustles of the 19th century to the chain accents of the 2000s, fashion is constantly changing from one trend to the next. Despite this, fashion still continues to recycle and revisit past looks and ideals.
Many have ideal aesthetics or clothing they would like to wear in public but are too self-conscious to dress the way they want because it could go against current fashion trends.
“Fashion is always changing, and honestly, considering how history has been, what would have been seen in a negative light will probably be the biggest thing down the line,” said Hannah Hwang, a liberal arts major.
With fashion constantly evolving, it only seems right that people should be allowed to dress however they want without fear of ridicule. If that means wearing a hoop skirt or a cloak, a crop top or short shorts, then people should be free to express themselves in fun ways.
“I wear whatever I want because it’s my choice, but I know wearing revealing clothes isn’t something super ‘acceptable’ even though it’s 2020,” said Deborah Baer, a high school senior. “Wearing crop tops or short shorts still gets me a look.”
The most important thing about fashion is about being comfortable and having fun. Fashion should be a freedom of expression.
“Fashion is fake,” said Emma Smith, a high school student. “If I want to wear 12 petticoats and a circle dress then I will.”
This attitude in the younger generation is the first sign of people making a change in the concept of fashion.
Throughout the centuries, younger age groups tend to be the forerunners of changes in style. Young adults will create something entirely new or decide to breathe more life into older trends. Fashion is not permanent.
“I also would want to wear old-time stuff, like princess-style dresses or something, but would never do that because it’s not something people usually wear,” Baer said.
Today’s youth are deciding it is time to stop being subjected to society’s ideals of what fashion is.
“There's all this and that, and yet when we see old model cars that are vintage out on the streets, nobody makes them stop while driving to slander them, so why should we do the same with what someone wants to wear,” Hwang said.
Whether it makes you comfortable to wear long skirts, suits, capes or crop tops, be comfortable in yourself and your expression.
By Danica Brackett - Staff Writer
1. Love Street
Love Street Apparel was founded in 2013. This online store is based in Salt Lake City, Utah. This clothing store sells newly handmade and vintage items. Love Street even uses eco-friendly shipping supplies. WEBSITE: https://shoplovestreet.com
All images courtesy of @shoplovestreet on Instagram.
2. NYCT Clothing
NYCT is a California-based store. This store sells shirts, hoodies and sweatshirts with different graphic designs. They also sell different styles of denim jeans, biker shorts and skirts. WEBSITE: https://www.nyctclothing.com
All images courtesy of @nyctclothing on Instagram.
Wanderlush is an online boutique created by a stay-at-home mom in 2016. All items are shipped out of Estero, Florida. This store sells unique items for young women looking to enhance their closets. They sell anything from bodysuits to two-piece sets. WEBSITE: https://shopwanderlush.com
All images courtesy of @shopwanderlush on Instagram.
4. Tiger Cherry
Based in Los Angeles, Tiger Cherry is an online retailer. They sell many different styles of clothing and even have a festival section. Tiger Cherry offers after pay so you can break down your shopping spree into four separate payments. WEBSITE: https://tigercherry.store
All images courtesy of @shoptigercherry on Instagram.
5. Luca + Grae
Luca + Grae was created in mid-2016 by content creator Aspyn Ovard Ferris. This online store features modern bohemian style clothing along with shoes and accessories. WEBSITE: https://lucaandgrae.com
All images courtesy of @lucaandgrae on Instagram.
6. Lace and Luck
Lace and Luck is another trendy California-based online retailer. They offer up-to-date California lifestyle fashion. Their clothing is meant for those who want to look stunning but also gives that effortless final touch. WEBSITE: https://laceandluck.com
All images courtesy of @laceandluck on Instagram.
7. Need My Style
Founded in Wisconsin, Need My Style is owned by a 26-year-old wife and mom. Need My Style sells anything and everything you could imagine. WEBSITE: https://needmystyle.com
All images courtesy of @needmystyle on Instagram.
2020AVE is an LA-based online store that specializes in SoCal fashion. This store promises great quality clothing. 2020AVE offers anything from high fashion to lounging around the house outfits. WEBSITE: https://www.2020ave.com
All images courtesy of @2020ave on Instagram.
9. Boys Lie
This online store has a crazy story of how the co-owners became best friends, which led to the creation of Boys Lie. This popular well-known brand is worn by many celebrities. They sell unique sweatshirt/sweatpant sets, beanies, hoodies and more. WEBSITE: https://boyslieofficial.com
All images courtesy of @boyslie on Instagram.
This online retailer is based in Arizona. This store offers clothing for many different types of styles. Their site even features a blog that includes many fashion-related articles. WEBSITE: https://www.shoppriceless.com
All images courtesy of @shoppriceless on Instagram.
By Danica Brackett
Aesthetics are everywhere from social media pages to bedrooms.
Aesthetically pleasing fashion is becoming more popular than ever. There are many different types of aesthetics, probably more than one can imagine. There is an aesthetic for everyone and everything.
The hard part is choosing which one fits you the most.
When choosing an aesthetic, take into consideration what you like - colors, style, meaning and overall visual presence. Let the aesthetic speak to you. Take the time to analyze as many aesthetics as you can. You’ll know it is the one for you when you see it.
Even consider making a mood board full of things that you love, then search for an aesthetic most similar to it.
If you’re searching for an aesthetic, feel free to continue reading and explore a few of the options below:
Recently becoming more popular over social media. Soft girls give off a cutesy feminine vibe.
Colors: shades of pink and yellows
Style: high-waisted jeans, oversized sweaters, chunky sneakers, butterfly clips, girly graphic tees and heavy blush.
Often compared to ‘90s punk fashion, grunge is on the darker side of the aesthetic spectrum. Appears very rebellious.
Colors: black, grey, red and white
Style: distressed jeans, plaid flannels, black graphic tees, Doc Martens, fishnets, chains and chokers.
Inspired by Japanese fashion and pop culture. Often described as adorable and cute.
Colors: all pastels.
Apparel: dress, skirts, shorts overalls, hair clips, oversized sweatshirts and chunky shoes.
Taking it back to the ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s fashion. When they said history repeats itself, they weren't lying. This aesthetic proves that.
Colors:navy, sky blue, grey and muted colors
Apparel: mom jeans, sneakers, collared shirts, oversized sweatshirts and circle sunglasses.
Influenced by popular social media trends. The baddie aesthetic keeps up to date with what is currently popular. Colors: nudes, black, dark green and mauve
Style: winged eyeliner, biker shorts, oversized t-shirts, joggers and distressed jeans.
This aesthetic gives a very down-to-earth loving vibe. This aesthetic screams positive vibes from creative people.
Colors: yellow, tan, orange and green.
Apparel: mom jeans, oversized sweaters, anklets, tall socks and sneakers
Don’t be afraid to experiment and change up your aesthetic. Through trial and error, eventually, you’ll find the one that fits you the most. When in doubt, if you can’t find the right for you, don't be afraid to create your own!
Remember, fashion is a way to express yourself. Don’t hold yourself back. There are no rules. Have fun with it.
By Danica Brackett - Staff Writer
1. Fashion Nova
Fashion Nova is a fast fashion clothing company. Fashion Nova carries clothing for all styles and all body types. Fashion Nova is mainly online based but has five retail stores located in the Los Angeles area. This company works with many influencers, so if you see your favorite YouTuber wearing something super cute, there is a chance you’ll find it on this site.
Images via @fashionnova on Instagram
Boohoo is a United Kingdom-based clothing company. They became international in 2011 when they started shipping to the United States and Australia. Their website features many different styles. Anyone can find a must-have within minutes for a really good price. They also offer 50% off for students who download UNiDAYS!
Images via @boohoo on Instagram
SHEIN is one of the cheapest online clothing stores. They sell cute clothing at the lowest prices. They have everything from cute tank tops, oversized hoodies, two-piece sets, joggers and dresses to even home decor. If you’re looking for a cute, cheap outfit this is the online store for you.
Images via @shein_us on Instagram
Amazon is something almost everyone knows about. They have everything. So, of course, they have clothes. You can find clothing on Amazon of all kinds. The options are endless. Many online boutiques order off of Amazon so you might as well do the same!
Images via @amazonfashion on Instagram
Like Amazon, many online boutiques order off of AliExpress from different distributors. This gives you the option to order the same clothing from those cute Instagram stores for a lower price. Take advantage of this when you're looking for the perfect outfit.
Images via @aliexpress on Instagram
Story by Selena Williams - Photos by Julie Archer
Although society does not have the ability to tell people what to do with their hair, it promotes a standard of what beauty should look like. The media’s representation of beauty is so narrow and people who are not confident in themselves can fall prey to altering their appearance in order to feel accepted.
According to Taniah Herron, a sociology major at Rose State, hair was considered to be good straight or wavy in her family. Taniah has type 4c curls and her mother, Tamica Webster, has type 3a curls.
“Growing up even to this point, I still have people in my family that believe that good hair is biracial hair or straight hair,” Herron said. “You know, the finer the hair the better the hair or the more defined the curl is, the better it is. Still, to this day, I look at it like that, you know the easier your hair is to tame the better your hair is. So, you know I do like my hair, but at times I look at it like ‘Oh, I wish I had this person’s hair,’ because society tells us that’s what good hair is.”
Soon-to-be aesthetician and Rose State biology major Olivia Tarver thought the same.
“I feel that society tells us that natural hair should be straight and you shouldn’t embrace your curls,” Tarver said. “It took a while to start loving my naturally curly hair, but I think being natural made me look at myself like I'm worth more, it made me realize that I don’t need to be what society considers unique.”
According to Herron, people prefer straight hair because it is considered to be more clean and classy.
“I remember people coming up to me when I first really started wearing an afro, they would say, ‘oh, my gosh!’ I really love the wild hair,’” Herron said. “I don’t really know what that means; maybe they’re saying that curly hair is considered to be out of the ordinary and that’s what makes them feel so uncomfortable because nobody’s curl pattern is the same. No matter if you have 4a or 4c, we all have different curl patterns. Our hair flows a certain way whereas, with straight hair, you either have thick or thin.”
Types 4a and 4c curl types do not have a defined curl pattern. It shrinks 70 percent more than any other hair texture.
How to moisturize type 3 or higher natural curly hair
Deep conditioning, oil treatments and hair masks are the best for keeping curly hair moisturized and fresh.
“I think a person with naturally curly hair should deep condition twice a week,” Tarver said. “Also, what keeps your hair healthy are scalp massages, they will promote hair growth and blood circulation.”
She also emphasized the need for leave-in conditioner.
“Wet Line Xtreme Professional Styling Gel is a great gel to use on curly hair because it won’t make your hair feel crunchy. Some other products to use are Nairobi, Shea Moisture, TGIN (Thank God It’s Natural), Carol’s Daughter and Camille Rose Naturals Products.”
How to maintain naturally curly hair
“Protective hairstyles like braids and twists are a perfect way to maintain curly hair and to promote hair growth,” Tarver said. “Also, stay away from any products that contain alcohol, sulfates and parabens; use satin hair ties when you put your hair up in a bun or ponytail to avoid breakage.” It is also important to avoid over processing hair.
“If a person with curly hair wants to switch up their hairstyle, I recommend them straightening their hair only once or twice a year,” Tarver said.
In spite of societal standards often determining what is considered beautiful, curly hair is natural and learning to care for it can help women better appreciate themselves.
For a hair texture quiz, visit naturallycurly.com.
Story by Yesenia Gonzalez
Clothing styles are woven into the fabric of society. Fashion trends throughout the ages convey demographics such as social class and marital status. A simple cotton house dress indicated a woman of humble bearings, whereas an elegant evening gown showed that a woman had no need to work and could afford to dress expensively. Garments labeled their wearers.
The Tudor Period boasts an extensive timeline, between the 15th and 17th centuries, characterized by royalty’s elaborate gowns for women and extravagant coats for men. The classic late 19th and early 20th century Victorian Era is widely remembered for its constrictive corsets and waistcoats for women and men, respectively. The short-lived Edwardian Era, lasting nearly as long as the duration of World War I and overlapping the end of the Victorian Era, promoted slim-fitted dresses without corsets; upper-class men wore slim-fitted suits with elegant hats. The Industrial Revolution in the 18th and 19th centuries mechanized the process of making clothing into a cost-effective, time-efficient task and the common citizen could afford a more extensive wardrobe. Inventions like the sewing machine and the spinning jenny, a machine that wove multiple spindles of thread at once to make textiles, came about during the Industrial Revolution. Workers, often female, were needed to operate machines at textile mills, which eventually progressed to more fashion changes.
Hairstyles and Hemlines Shorten Over Time
Women began wearing their hair up or in shorter styles during and after World War I, according to Michelle Brockmeier, professor of history at Rose State. Long, free-flowing hair, which was unfit in the dangerous textile mills and military supply factories where long hair could get caught in the machines, was a sign of girlhood. When a woman reached marrying age, she would pin her hair up, signifying the end of her youth. The working-class woman became synonymous with her pinned-up hair. Bobbed hair soon after became a sought-after style for its convenience and hygiene among nurses and female industrial workers during World War I. The bobbed style became symbolic of the rebellious, free-spirited teenage girl in the 1920s. During the Roaring 20s, flapper dresses with intricate beadwork and fringe were popularized. From the early 1900s and onward, hemlines evolved to a shorter length.
Hollywood’s Impact on Fashion
Male fashion has also undergone its fair share of changes. Brockmeier recounted how the famous 1934 film, “It Happened One Night,” starring Clark Gable, nearly eliminated a notorious item in male fashion.
“[Clark Gable] almost single-handedly destroyed the undershirt business in America,” she said.
One of the scenes of the film shows Gable’s character taking off his shirt, revealing bare skin, sans undershirt. Men’s button-down shirts have been a wardrobe staple for centuries, but have experienced changes. Brockmeier explained shirt cuffs and collars became removable so that working-class men could avoid dirtying their shirts when working. Even the color of men’s shirts became a class symbol. The term “blue-collar worker” originated from the fabric color of choice for working-class citizens. Men who had high-paying professions had no need to dirty their shirts and wore white shirts to work, paving the way for the term “white-collar worker.” Clothing defined its wearer and revealed social class details, in a way few other everyday necessities could.
“Another thing we need to remember in [Western society] is our clothing is a reflection of our personality and also, not necessarily of class anymore,” Brockmeier said.
Although the working class in America inspired trends like denim fabric, popularized because of factory workers during World War II, and bobbed hair, for much of history, royalty and the wealthy set the standards in the fashion world. In Europe, which greatly influenced American fashion even after the American Revolution, Queen Victoria popularized the white wedding gown and large, lavish dresses. According to Brockmeier, movie stars Marlene Dietrich and Katharine Hepburn furthered the notoriety of the bobbed haircut and caused a stir when they wore pants in public. Although dresses remained the garment of choice for most women in the early 1900s, it was not rare for some women to sport slacks.
“Actually, women started wearing pants, not necessarily denim pants, [wool slacks] and things like that, even as early as the 1910s,” Rose State Theatre costume designer Tamitha Zook said.
Other fashion icons include actress and humanitarian Audrey Hepburn, who made little black dresses—an unusual color choice seldom worn outside of funerals in the 1950s—iconic. Former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy’s simple, regal style drew international acclaim in the 1960s. Similarly, Princess Diana became a fashion icon in the 1980s, perhaps Europe’s response to Kennedy.
Men’s wardrobes were also influenced by innovators and popular trends. Zook said she enjoys the difficult-to-work-with but beautiful textiles of the Tudor period. During that time, waistcoats were a common accessory for men’s coats. However, English fashion designer Beau Brummell invented the traditional three-piece suit for men that did not include the heavy waistcoat. Another staple during the Tudor period was a pouch mechanism to enlarge the appearance of men’s genitals under their pants, known as a “codpiece,” which King Henry VIII popularized.
Whether an intricate ball gown or a modest cotton dress, for centuries fashion has denoted the social status of wearers. Technological advances paved the way for mass-produced clothing, which gave people an accessible mark of individuality. Fashion through the ages has changed in response to social and economic factors for both men and women.
Zweiman and Suh devised their plan to create a pink hat that was symbolic of women’s rights, whether a person could walk in the march or not. Its significance quickly had the Little Knittery owner, Kat Coyle, jumping onboard with a design pattern functional for all people.
“The name Pussyhat was chosen in part as a protest against vulgar comments Donald Trump made about the freedom he felt to grab women’s genitals, [as well as] to de-stigmatize the word ‘pussy’ and transform it into one of empowerment and to highlight the design of the hat’s ‘pussycat ears,’” according to the Pussyhat Project.
The project was launched. The Pussyhat reached thousands of homes, proudly worn by the marchers—and the feminist voice reverberated through America. The women’s rights success signaled its strength in one fashion statement, in one pink hat.
Soon, other designers’ models embodied the feminist power on the runway. Dior gained inspiration from Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, a feminist and author of the a compelling essay titled “We Should All Be Feminists.” This phrase became the slogan printed on white T-shirts created by artistic director Maria Grazia Chiuri. Many other designers hopped on the mambo line of T-shirts with phrases like “Full-Time Feminist” and “The Future is Female.” Simple clothing articles were gaining momentum, reaching unstoppable speed.
The marches continued across the country through the beginning of 2018. However, the protesters voiced strong feminist views addressing a plethora of concerns, not just traditional women’s rights. One of these views, intersectional feminism, states the liberation of women is tied to the liberation of all, so while some marched only against the Trump administration, intersectional feminists marched for the liberation of the LGBTQ community, people of color and those of lower socioeconomic status.
In addition, many people are worried about the quality of employment for women.
In a society filled with judgment, many women have a difficult time expressing themselves comfortably. Having to worry about the quality of their jobs, a significant part of their lives, is cumbersome. Most people forget that the fashion designers of the world are subliminally addressing this. They are giving the women of the world the tools they need to express their power, to be seen and heard in any workplace environment.
A huge aspect of first impressions is what a person wears. Each time someone walks into a room, they are making a statement about who they are and how they want people to remember them.
Kyle Tony Tahkeal, creative director of his fashion line Tony Tahkeal, understands the importance of first impressions. An Oklahoma native, Tahkeal traveled to Seattle, where he completed his fashion education at the New York Fashion Academy. Tahkeal worked in visual merchandising for five years and has been a fashion designer for three years. He noted how crucial self-expression is.
“I have always seen fashion as an expression of your personality,” Tahkeal said. “Fashion was sort of my icebreaker with people. So, I decided I wanted to design clothes that not only show my creativity and personality as a designer, but maybe I can help people express themselves as well.”
Tahkeal lives by the motto: “If you look good, you feel good.” He said women of all colors, shapes and sizes can embrace their look and pull off high-fashion products. Self-confidence is a key element in any fashion situation and throughout life, which is why feminism is important to designers like Tahkeal.
New designs that encompass bold, sophisticated and sexy looks are on the horizon. Tahkeal cannot wait to share his new collection with the world.
“I am hoping that I can empower and inspire women to take charge of their lives with my designs and really live their best life,” Tahkeal said.
People across the world can watch the feminist movement expand through fashion—a political array of colorful fabrics stitched together to signify one universal declaration: Strength. There is strength in numbers. The band of feminist followers is not exclusive to women. The more people involved to recognize women’s rights, the merrier unity will be.
This is not to say the inherent disadvantages and challenges women face bar them from enjoying work. Many enjoy their place of work and are members of all-women colleague groups.
For instance, The Collective, an all-women working space, was established in OKC in June 2016. The project is marketed largely through various Instagram accounts, which spread information about businesses holding events at The Collective, such as Crafting & Cocktails and Cookies by Sydnie.
Alyssa Loveless, The Village housing director at Rose State, has been to The Collective a few times for hand-lettering classes, open paint nights and cookie decorating classes.
“[The Collective has a] very welcoming, encouraging [and] supportive women vibe. The décor is fun and modern, there’s always good music playing and it’s an opportunity to meet other ladies,” Loveless said.
The establishment has 30 members and counting, according to Amber Klunzinger, owner of The Collective. She said the members range from “attorneys to makeup artists, business coaches to graphic designers.”
Klunzinger created the space when she was working independently, fresh from the corporate world. She explained how she felt isolated; the need for a women’s community weighed on her mind.
“I saw a need for women to come together to support one another in both personal and professional capacities as well as a convenient and peaceful place to work,” Klunzinger said.
The Collective sprouted from this idea. The design elements that Loveless observed coincided with how Klunzinger envisioned her dream home office: bright and airy, comforting, yet professional. This atmosphere plays a role in how the women of the group support each other through good times and hardships.
Klunzinger claimed she has received waves of positive feedback from the surrounding community, despite consistently being asked about feminism in her line of work.
“I have a brother. I was always the girl with the guy friends. My natural bent was away from any ‘women’s’ type of event or club,” Klunzinger said, sharing her outlook on feminism. “My greatest mentors, challengers [and] cheerleaders in my life have been men. I opened a female-only space because I felt called to do so. I had a lack of strong female supportive relationships in my life and I saw that all around me. So, I made a place where they could happen - community over competition - and by the grace of God it has turned into a beautiful thing.”
Most all-women organizations are not built on opposing the male sex. Klunzinger discussed how she has been dismissed more by women than she has by men. Her goal was to never shun the male population, but rather to form a unifying area for women to build each other up. In her eyes, the men present in her life could be classified as feminists, though they may not categorize themselves that way.
The owner takes humble pride in what she has structured with the help from both sexes.
Klunzinger also does not take for granted the role that fashion plays in The Collective. She explained how the signature article of clothing that best represents her organization is a pair of distressed jeans. Klunzinger appreciates the freedom from a strict dress code at The Collective.
“The freedom to not only wear what we want to our jobs, but to be the ones who pick what that job actually looks like is something I try not to take for granted. Whether that is owning your own company or chasing after kiddos or a 9-to-5 or anything in between ...We have the power to make it happen,” Klunzinger concluded.