In honor of Black Friday, let’s discuss the essential and understated power of the Little Black Dress.
The LBD is a staple of many of our wardrobes and it can be dressed up or dressed down. It’s a versatile dress and comes in so many styles and designs. Looking through my wardrobe I have so many options of LBDs… leather, PVC, satin, lace, peplum, velvet… dresses for any occasion whether it is shopping or clubbing (not that I go clubbing but if I did I have a perfect dress for it).
Until my early 30’s, my dressing was mainly panties and lingerie. I owned heels from time to time but I never had many dresses. I thought they were cute and there was always a longing when I saw someone wearing a pretty dress but when I wore one I didn’t care for how it looked. I didn’t feel cute, I didn’t look cute. Because of this I believed that my dressing stopped, so to speak, at lingerie.
Years later I learned how wrong I was.
I didn’t change as much as I learned how I wanted to look in a dress. If I order a dress and I try it on, I look terrible in it. I look as terrible as I did all those years ago. The difference between now and then is that when I try on a dress I know I am only seeing if it fits. I don’t know if I like a dress or if I feel cute in it until I am wearing my forms, my thigh pads, my hip pads, and my corset. I need my shapewear to see how it fits, to see how it looks on Hannah’s body, not the boy’s body. In male mode no matter how cute a dress is I always look like a boy wearing a dress. There’s no shape, no curves, the cut doesn’t compliment my femme shape. It just kind of… hangs on my body.
I didn’t see the potential of a dress when I was younger, but I do now.
When I started to properly create my wardrobe and add more than panties to my closet, the first dress I bought was a LBD. It was from Target of all places. Why did I chose a LBD? Well, they’re iconic. Classy, sexy, and was perfect for the look I wanted. A LBD can be paired with jewelry, amazing stilettos, black stockings… the formal look was always appealing to me and a LBD was perfect.
But the LBD was also… well, safe, in a way. Black is slimming, black can help you blend in. Of course, a LBD can help you stand out but black doesn’t necessarily draw attention the same way a bright pink dress or a dress with a floral or bold pattern can. I was timid back then even if I was dressing up to have a girls night in with my wife.
As time passed and my confidence grew I became more comfortable as I went out en femme. I wasn’t drawing the stares and pointed fingers I was expecting. I noticed that most people didn’t care that a t-girl was at the mall. Yes, some people cared and did a double take but for the most part people minded their own business or were distracted by their phones. My wardrobe stated to move from black to bright colors and fun patterns. Accepting that I was never going to blend in, I went the opposite direction. If people are going to stare at a t-girl then I may as well have a fabulous dress that looks as cute as I (usually) feel.
My wardrobe has fewer LBDs in it than it used to, but that is a testament to my growing confidence and a reflection of my not caring (and wondering) about what people think of me. Honestly, they’re probably not caring or thinking about me at all. I mean, I don’t care what people are doing or wearing out in the real world, why would I think anyone else does? (I mean, I know some people are nosy and care waaay too much about things that have zero impact on their own lives, but you get my point.)
So here’s to the LBD, my gateway dress and one of the most essential things this t-girl can own.