A couple of years ago, I read this excellent article. It made me realize three things: 1) I like the way dresses look on me, which makes me feel more confident when I wear them*, 2) I was subconsciously concerned that coming across as feminine would make others think I wasn’t serious about my work, and 3) I like to wear fun clothing that represents my interests. Science dresses solve all these problems! I can wear clothing that looks good on me and depicts the things I like, while simultaneously demonstrating that being a computer scientist is not at odds with presenting as feminine. Since then, science dresses have taken over my wardrobe, and they’re pretty much all that I wear to conferences.
Circuits and leaves:
It’s been great to see science dresses increasing in popularity on the internet over the last couple of years! Unfortunately, they are still all too rare. Circuits and leaves will put all of the cool dresses (and other pieces of feminine science and technology clothing) I come across in one place, both for the benefit of all who enjoy science fashion. I started the associated Etsy store for the same reason: to increase the amount of clothing available that matches my interests and looks good on me and other people like me. For that reason, I’m going to focus on clothing that is available in at least a US size 16 (ideally larger), because that’s my size (and, incidentally, the average size in the US). I might occasionally cover more gender-neutral clothing if its really cool, but, as science-themed and nerdy gender-neutral clothing is relatively plentiful, that won’t be my emphasis, because it’s already easy to find.
* Should my confidence be linked to my appearance? Of course not. But sometimes you have to take baby steps towards dismantling the patriarchy.