Ingun Grimstad Klepp
What is so dangerous about colours in women’s clothes? In this article the author is looking for answers in the book Skikk og bruk (etiquette), in ladies and fashion magazines dated 1999, and in interviews with women as well as in their piles of discarded clothing.
The author found that colours are considered dangerous because they break with the level-headed aesthetics of the middle class, and because they refer to gender in the wrong way. Economical and practical reasons, as well as the notion of colours as becoming, are used as arguments in favour of this self-inflicted asceticism.
Individualism and personal expression are applied as the mantra for dressing habits, and as a camouflage for disciplining. The claim that clothes should be suitable and if possible also reflect the bearers’ personality can be regarded as a dressing norm, and thereby as something which puts structuring above the individual.
This article is in Norwegian.