To be a woman

 Admired, cursed, put on a pedestal, burnt at the stakes. They were mothers, mistresses, witches, amazons, queens and housewives – women.

The abundance of the above mentioned roles proves the complexity of woman’s nature. Not each of them must be Mata Hari, Eleanor Roosevelt or Greta Garbo, but each of them has an important life role to play. 

Following the words of Vivien Leigh – a performer of an indomitable woman - Scarlet O’Hara: “There are no ugly women, but there are women who do not know that they are beautiful”

To learn it, we do not need surgically created lips of Angelina Jolie or silicone basket balls put in the place of bosom. A woman with a big nose, small lips can be truly fascinating; the crucial thing is to discover “the thing”. And this is something – this is personality.



As an example we may use one of the most prominent names in the world of fashion – Coco Chanel.

You need to be tough too. Chanel was growing up in an orphanage, doomed to a difficult start in life, having no support of any relatives or means to survive. The future fashion designer had, however, her elbows and she learned how to jostle. She made it through two world wars and managed to stay on top of the fashion world for half the century. She was loved, hated and admired, but never indifferent. Allegedly, she was not outstanding, could not sew well, could not design, but she had the sense and intuition. She was able to feel the atmosphere, the climate and the needs customer’s needs. She had a great sense to advertising – natural, not forced marketing. She was a rule breaker, changed heavy costumes of the start of 20th century into light, elegant creations, stealing the trousers monopoly from men and showing woman calves, not thighs, however (Coco was a strong opponent of miniskirts). Her creations were simple, natural and stylish. “Truly, I say to you, when I speak of elegance, I speak of luxury. Luxury must remain invisible but perceptible. Luxury is simple. It is an opposite of complexity” Coco used to say.

“Charm, chic, charme, style our weapon is sex-appeal”[1]

Coco did not limit herself to attires, she also dressed women in a timeless scent of Chanel No 5, which since it was launched in 1922, has always been on top.

Coco was not afraid to experiment at work and life. She was never a slave of conventions, neither in her childhood as a poor girl in an orphanage, nor as a millionaire. She used to say: “The bravest of all deeds is still thinking independently. Out loud.” Following Coco, we should not be ourselves and express what we think. We should think, create, not imitate, not process. Particularly, that the present times make lots of women are lost on the axe where on the one pole is a housefrau, and on the other extreme – a cougar from a recent American series.

“I believe that contemporarily there are two types of womanhood. The first one embodies a reasonable family focused woman, who shows her femininity by docility, softness, submission, cleanliness and inclination to devotion (even with God’s help you are not able to reach this state without dopes). The latter sort, more common, but equally hard to achieve model of a woman of “Sex and the city” – too sweet and cute, a fetishist forever thinking of nothing but shoes, whose life passion mission look as a sexy model sipping colourful drinks. Her professional life is only for proving where she gets the money for clothes, shoes, jewellery, beauty treatments and a cranberry martini 20 bucks a glass. There are men in her life, but such a woman talks about them as if she was growing orchids and fighting with a particularly fickle species, that does not want to grow up. These feminists in a glamour version do not really love men – they love shopping and women similar to themselves.”[2]

In this respect you need to be yourself and do not bother what the others say. Let them deal with their own business, but if they deal with ours, it means we are worth it. This also means our lives are more interesting than theirs.

Summing up, still remaining in the world of fashion, about the approach to the underwear in the 19th century:

“Looking after lingerie and property is such an important issue, that it is yourself whom you should only listen to. Besides this, that servants oftentimes like wearing their masters’ underwear, none of them can so carefully and cleanly maintain it as the owner, who, incurs all the cost and knows its value.[3]

“Dirty underwear, just after taking off, should be carefully inspected and darned. It should not be thrown carelessly, each piece first must be aired, and then rolled up and stacked in order, in separate drawers or boxes, as it is done with clean pieces.”[4]

Let’s air our wardrobes, lets jostle and go forward!

[1] excerpt from „Sex-appeal”, lyrics E. Schlechter, L. Starski, 1937.

[2] Karen Garbo, „The Book of Coco Chanel Style. How to become an elegant classy woman”. Wydawnictwo Literackie, 2014, p. 185

[3] „Lithuanian housewife, the art of a proper housekeeping”, Wilno, published by J. Zawadzki, 1867, p. 12

[4] ibid, p.13