Stephen Wells first began his idea for online vintage store, Source Vintage, when he left school at 16 and dreamed of owning his own business. He became a collector of vintage wears and vinyl records, and soon his idea was born. Now aged 32 and based in South Ayrshire, Scotland, his store is up and running.
“It was not until I visited Glasgow for my 30th birthday, when I met my now fiancé, Liina, and then subsequently relocated to Scotland from the South of England, that I found the courage to take that leap into self employment and make my Source Vintage dream come true.”
From Will Smith’s son, Jaden, who openly stated that he wears clothing from places like Topshop because he sees them as just clothes, and who was the face of the women’s Louis Vuitton campaign earlier this year, to Australian actor, Ruby Rose, who wears whatever she likes – clothes are becoming more and more genderless – people are starting to mix up what they wear and feel comfortable in, regardless of who the designer has aimed them at.
Wearing clothes created for the opposite sex is nothing new, but our society has become more open to gender and sexuality itself, creating a brand new environment for those who want to experiment with who they are, or for those who want to wear a dress, even though they’re a boy and do not relate to being transgender – they just want to wear what they want to wear.
“I had grown increasingly frustrated with the high street’s failure to evolve with an ever-changing society, a society which in 2016 is far more diverse and open in terms of size, sexuality and gender, than perhaps ever before. We continue to be categorised and told how we are expected to look and dress to conform with their perception of what is ‘normal’ or ‘acceptable’. Through our passion for positive body image and gender neutral style, Source Vintage has broken down these barriers. We provide a safe and non-discriminatory retail experience where style is not dictated by the perceptions and opinions of others. Quite simply, a genderless store which is more reflective of today’s society.”
It isn’t just genderless fashion that is on the rise – albeit slowly but it’s there – feeling good about your body is becoming a key factor in the high street fashion industry with plus size collections taking centre stage. You just need to take a look at shops such as River Island to see their updated ranges and sizes. Is unisex next?
Want to read the rest? Check out issue 49!
Words copyright VanityHype 2016 | Header image by Source Vintage