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"clothing identity" Tag


A Bipolar Wardrobe


Monday, April 2, 2018

For many people colours have stark connotations related to their moods. Think of sayings like “feeling blue”, “being green with envy”, “seeing red” or think about mood-rings that supposedly change colour every time your mood changes. Undoubtedly moods and colours are intertwined in one way or another.

Thinking of mood swings related to colour makes me think of my mother, who has bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder causes swings in mood, energy, and the ability to function throughout the day. It is known for alternating periods of depression and mania that can last from days to months. Thus she has experienced extreme mood swings. How does she relate her moods to colour? She personally doesn’t clearly remember what happend during her manic episodes, I however do and noticed how her mania and depression greatly influence her way of dressing. She has a wardrobe filled with exotic clothes in all colours of the rainbow and lot’s of different prints and styles. When being manic she dresses herself as an artwork before going outside, making heads turn wherever she goes. When being depressed she doesn’t really dresses herself, but instead stays in her grey pyjama’s at home all day. I think that a lot of people might experience that they wear more colourful clothes when feeling happy and wearing more neutral toned clothes when feeling sad.  I decided to create a colour system based on my mothers way of dressing, and not on people’s way of dressing in general or on people with bipolar disorder’s way of dressing. I thought it would be generalizing people’s experiences too much and I think that especially dealing with people who have a condition like bipolar disorder one must avoid that to avoid stigmatizing the disorder. Not every person with bipolar disorder has the same behaviour towards their wardrobe, or the same experiences in general.

After having decided to make a colour system based on my mother’s way of dressing, I read a lot of general information about bipolar disorder, which didn’t bring me any further in the development of my project. I could also hardly ask my mother any questions about it, as she doesn’t remember how she was when being manic. I later found an interesting article written by someone who also has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, about what having this disorder means for their gender identity. The writer of the article identifies as a non-binary person, and thus I shall refer to them as “their” and “they”. They experience that when being manic they feel more feminine, and when being depressed they feel more masculine. This shows itself in many ways, one of them being the way they dress. When feeling manic, they will wear a dress, when feeling depressed, they will wear baggy clothes. This made me realize how my mother’s way of dressing doesn’t only change in colour when her mood does, but also in how traditionally feminine versus masculine her clothes would be. When being manic it wouldn’t be a bright yellow sweatpants she would put on, but a bright yellow dress. When being depressed she wouldn’t put on a grey miniskirt, but grey oversized sweatpants instead. This was something to keep in mind in the development of my colour system.

After researching I figured it was time to start working hands on. I collected all the traditionally feminine colourful clothes and the traditionally masculine baggy neutral toned clothes from my own wardrobe. I realized that I order my clothes by colour in my wardrobe, in some way I was thus already working on this project of making a colour system before it even started. With the clothes I tried making a small installation without damaging the clothes, this was very frustrating. Somehow nothing I tried seemed to work for me and I soon decided to quit trying. I felt like the best ways of displaying clothes without damaging them already existed and happens all the time and everywhere, which is putting them on mannequins, on hangers or folding them neatly. I didn’t feel like playing clothing store, so this was not the way to go. I took a step back from the whole process, let some time pass to then later come with new insights again. I concluded that the colour system I was trying to create already existed and just needed to be documented. I decided to make a video with my mother, of her wearing two bipolar outfits.

The filming went very smoothly, my mother and I enjoyed putting the outfits together and enjoyed spending time together, which to me makes the video feel genuine too. We tried to make the contrast between her two outfits/moods very clear, but still true to reality. This lead to us filming her depressed outfit inside on the couch, and her manic outfit outside in a field of flowers with more movement. I later also edited the video to be slowed down when her depressed outfit was shown, and sped up the video when her manic outfit was portrayed. When presenting the video, I went back to trying to make an installation using my own clothes but now including the video shown on a tablet. I felt like just showing the video on a screen would not fit how personal and tangible someone’s clothes, and thus my colour system, are. To make it even more personal/intimate, the viewer of the work needs to wear headphones to hear the sound of the video. The experience of the work does not get shared by a crowd, just like the experience of wearing clothes is an intimate one.

A Bipolar Wardrobe Photo

dis play


Friday, May 15, 2015

 

who inspires you?

she asked

who?

I thought…

what?

I thought then…

meet this person and get inspired

make a work out of this experience

she said

and so I met a fashion designer

young man

very pretty

he said that fashion is like a colouring book

we have certain outlines and we have to fill the ´surface´

and then he said a lot of other thing, too

and made me pay for his coffee

and then, biking through Albert Cuypstraat, I was thinking of the colouring books

and about what it is, that we are filing the given shape with

finding:

Yamaha

Pepsi

24

N-power

Avis

I love sport

Fedex

Virgin

Bronx NYC crew

Alpinestar

nike just do it

WELLA PROFESSIONALS

keep calm and swag

avatar

dr.Oetker

clothing is a billboard

I understood

a display which is touching every single corner of our lives except the shower corner

and then I thought further what makes us want to proudly wear a company logo on our chests and how could we make a use of this display that we are constantly wearing

and then I did not know what to do for a while

and then I knew again

I made a plan to make a comfortable universal sweatshirt which will have a displaying function beside the warm keeping, protecting and covering one

what would I fill the surface with?

what surface?

I wondered

and so I bought a surface

blank, grey sweatshirt

I decided to make a use of the existing shape of the sweatshirt and challenge the idea of temporary and replaceable advertisement on it

but how?

I thought

Removable sleeves?

but how?

adding a zipper?

or a velcro?

zipper

and so I added a zipper on the sleeves and by doing so, I allowed the printed advertisement/ promotional element to be easily removed or replaced by another one

I made a list of small businesses that I really truly want to support and promote

I gathered the logos of all of them

 

2mala1 mala kopie

 

the print will come on the sleeves

I made another decision

but how?

screen print?

okay

the screen print studio works on the base of appointments

you must discuss your idea with the screen print assistant first

then an appointment is made

attention: it sometimes lasts over two weeks

you start printing with the assistant

hopefully you can work independent later

costs

yes costs…

no

I am not going to screen print my logos

what else can I do?

transfer print it

of course

I printed my logos onto a specially coated transfer paper

then they were applied onto textile under the heat press

and there it was

logos on my sleeves

I looked at the sweatshirt in my hands

I wanted to wear it immediately

and I did

and it felt good

but it did not feel good enough

so I took it off and looked again

and after some time I wrote down

70cm metal zipper standard + another sleeves + velcro pocket question mark

and then I went to Jan

and made another pair of sleeves

black

I put transparent, removable pockets on them

and I like them a lot

and then I looked again

they told me I have to look and reflect on my work during my process

so I did

I reflected

and I asked myself

what is it that I have now?

sweatshirt design?

yes

and what else?

and then I started my analysis

see here: video

 

 

33 16

1 21

 

 

 

 

 


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