traditional european clothing

No but this scene is not just a random coincidence. Cosima is a wearing traditional Eastern European clothes. To someone who grew up like Helena this is the height of beauty and elegance. Helena would have looked up to girls wearing these clothes the same way girls look up to supermodels and movie stars in our modern world. So this means a A LOT because despite the fact that Helena met a half dead and very sick Cosima to Helena she is still the most beautiful of her sisters

scentedsweetspizza  asked:

I love your nyo Bulgaria drawing! I fall in love with traditional European clothes every time I see them (especially Polish ones), so I'd love to see you draw them more if you ever have the time- you draw them really well :)

thank you so much! and SAME - every time i see a photo set or something with folk clothing or traditional clothing (etc) i always get caught up in the details and beautiful patterning. i am especially weak to eastern/central european folk costumes because i just fall head over heels for the lavish embroidery and bold colors

The fuck is it exactly with everyone screaming "cultural appropriation" these days?

Before people call me some racist white girl, I would first like to make it clear that I’m Chinese.  100% Chinese.  I speak decently-fluent Mandarin.  I lived in Taiwan for 4 years.  I think this qualifies me to make comments about clothing regarding my culture.  Also, since I am only Chinese, and it is the only culture that I can claim besides American, I will limit my critique to people calling “appropriation” in regards to Chinese and East Asian clothing.

Ahem.  Let me begin:

What’s the fucking problem.  Really.

It’s one thing to disrespect religious/ceremonial garb by wearing it without permission or wearing it simply for fashion.  It’s another thing entirely to properly wear the traditional garb of another culture that is not yours because you admire its aesthetics.  Sexualizing traditional clothing is not okay, but sexualization of non-European traditional clothing shouldn’t be the only thing that’s called out.  We should also totally be calling out the sexualization of dirndls and nuns’ habits and every other “sexy insert-something-that-wasn’t-supposed-to-be-sexy” costume ever.

If a non-Asian person wants to wear Asian-inspired clothing, or even a straight-up fucking qipao or kimono, they should be able to do so, given that they do it properly.  If I can wear a European Renaissance dress for kicks and giggles without being torn apart on the internet, why can’t a white girl wear a properly-made qipao for fun?  If we’re going to start shaming people for wearing clothing inspired by another culture, we’re going to have to stop doing a lot of stuff in order to not be hypocrites, among those things being:

1.  Drinking tea.  Or coffee.  Those things are Asian and Middle Eastern in origin, respectively, and people who aren’t those cultures shouldn’t partake of these beverages.

2.  Wearing bathrobes.  Those things look a whole fucking lot like kimonos, man.  Shouldn’t wear those either.

3.  Wearing silk.  That shit came from China.  Nobody else can wear silk, dammit.  Cultural appropriation.

4.  Using paper.  Also a Chinese invention.  If you’re not Chinese, don’t fucking use paper.  All of you of European heritage, go back to using vellum.  Everyone else, please go back to using whatever writing material your ancestors used to use.

5.  Trying to learn a language that isn’t the language of your parents or your country.  Cultural appropriation.  How dare you appreciate the aesthetic qualities of another culture or show interest in something beyond your own heritage.

6.  Using chopsticks.  If you’re not East Asian, don’t fucking touch chopsticks.  God forbid you use an alternative, non-Western dining utensil.

Do you see how fucking ridiculous this gets?  The problem isn’t white people wearing kimonos or qipaos.  The problem is people not educating themselves and making TASTEFUL AESTHETIC CHOICES before donning garb that is not of their own race/culture/heritage.  Because beyond the whole racism/appropriation issue, there’s the issue of just being plain tacky, which goes beyond traditional clothing and extends into one’s fashion sense as a whole.  Yes, there are tacky kimono costumes and qipao costumes.  But for every tacky qipao, there’s an equally-tacky French maid or nurse or bar wench costume.

We have to remember that fashion, like language and food, is not a cultural island.  Just as many languages adopt parts of other languages and many countries’ cuisines incorporate the cooking methods and taste palettes of other countries’ dishes, so is fashion a fluid cultural medium.  There are most likely a shit ton of “Western” styles today that take bits and pieces of inspiration from other countries, and guess what?  Other countries take fashion inspiration from the West, too.  It’s not just because of imperialism or anything.  Fashion has been mixing around ever since people started traveling beyond their countries’ borders.

So please stop calling out people for cultural appropriation just because they wore something that isn’t strictly Western.  Ask yourself: is this religious and/or ceremonial garb? Did the wearer forego all refined aesthetic sense?  Has it been inappropriately sexualized?  Has it made an obvious and/or notable effort to be culturally accurate?  If your answer to all those questions except the last one was “no” and you can, to the best of your knowledge, answer “yes” to the last one, please stop shaming people unnecessarily.