Slavic Way: The importance of clothing in slavic folklore and why I stopped wearing trousers.

It is believed that men and women primarily draw their energy from different sources. This point of view is present in most of the cultures across the globe, with the male-female polarities being described in various configurations, with various symbols (Moon-Sun, Water-Fire, yin-yang, passive-active, emotional-intellectual).

In slavic folklore it is believed that men draw their energy from above - the sky, which is symbolically connected to the masculine principle, Father Sky, the element of Air, intellect. Women draw their energy from below - the earth, which is connected to the feminine principle, Mother Earth, creation and nurturing.
It is represented in the way male and female bodies are built - masculine bodies are generally wider from waist up (wide shoulders), while feminine bodies are wider from waist down (wide hips). Of course, we're dealing with a serious degree of generalization here, but keep in mind that this point of view comes from ages ago, when gender roles were much less fluid than today.

Anyway, what does this point of view have to do with what people wear? When we look at traditional folk clothing, we usually see men in simple pants and women in skirts/dresses with multiple layers. Most elderly ladies in slavic countries, especially from rural areas, still wear long skirts and aprons. Personally, I don't remember ever seeing my grandmother in trousers, maybe except when she was on a trip in the mountains.

It's these babushkas who pass down their old knowledge for younger generations.

(Image source: click)


So, here's some information about the importance of wearing skirts/dresses and how it affects our femininity, straight from Russia!
First of all, it is believed that a long, flared skirt creates a protective circle around us. By creating a cone shape, it helps us to stay grounded - our crotch is not disturbed by unnecessary layers of material and thus is freely connected to Mother Earth, undisturbed.
According to old slavic beliefs, wearing skirts and dresses also helps you to rebuild and maintain a strong bond with your female ancestry (ancestry veneration is one of the most important parts of slavic paganism / rodnovery).
It is generally believed that a woman who regularly wears skirts and dresses is more in touch with her body and her femininity, and is less prone to common feminine health problems.
An interesting superstition from the east claims that if a woman really wants to charm a man, she shouldn't wear trousers for at least the first seven dates!

Folklore aside, I'll share some of my experience on this topic. You need to know that I used to be more of a tomboy in the past. A few years ago, it started to change and in the end I managed to reclaim my femininity. Since then I was wearing more and more skirts and dresses, and less and less pants (let's be real, they're uncomfortable as fuck anyway!). When someday, for no particular reason, I started despising underwear, my wardrobe became richer in long flared skirts and dresses - and I felt at home! It was mindblowing to me how I didn't discover this earlier.
Nowadays, I wear skirts and dresses most of the time - maybe except when I go on a trip to the mountains (Highfive, grandma!) or I'm half-naked at home. I honestly don't think wearing skirts would change me in any way if I wasn't ready for this change. But since the transition happened in the right moment, I have to admit it did affect me positively. My posture changed, now I'm walking straight and proud, I feel less constrained, more witchy and I even cook more often! I also became a part of a beautiful group called "Skirty Women's Circle" (PL: "Spódnicowy Krąg Kobiet") with lots of empowered women inspiring each other.

I challenge every woman to try this for at least a week! Let me know what you think.

2 comments:

  1. I have recently started wearing 90% skirts and dresses - primarily for health reasons (I can't take an impromptu nap in jeans!), but I would definitely agree that it also makes me feel more in touch with my feminine self.

    I do always wear tights and leggings though so my thighs don't destroy each other...I wonder what *those* do in terms of constraining crotch power? I seem to prefer showing very little skin - which as a product of the 00s is quite a shocking turnaround for me - and showing less also makes me feel a bit more empowered.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks for sharing your experience, Ani! Tights and leggings are often discussed amongst the Skirt Theory enthusiasts and it's generally agreed upon that anything that doesn't have cross-shaped stitching (basically a cross stitching in the crotch) is non-constraining. Most of the ladies also agree that leggings are perfectly fine, although some of them buy special leggings without the cross stiching or they partially unstitch it (I'm not sure how practical that is!). Personally, I also wear both tights and leggings and I don't find them constraining if they're the right size. Gotta survive the cold Autumn and Winter somehow without freezing our asses off, right? ;) As soon as it gets warm enough I'm basically naked under my skirt/dress, and it seems like the most popular choice in the Skirt enthusiasts circles.
      It's also interesting that you mention how showing less skin is more empowering to you! I completely agree and relate to this as well. And I've heard some interesting folklore stories about it too, might write an article sometime in the future.

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