When Amanda, owner and designer of Larkspur, and I first started talking about a collaboration, I let her know I wasn't sure about modeling her beautiful selection of bralettes and panties for all the world to see. I'm modest - by nature and nurture - and I didn't want to do anything I'd be embarrassed about later on.
But I was intrigued by her suggestion that Larkspur garments are made to be worn - flattering real bodies* - rather than strategically arranged in a flatlay, and I decided it was a good time to challenge myself to create something artful. Something that felt like me. Not exposed or gaudy, just confident and comfortable.
I think we need to challenge the idea that women, and female bodies, have value only through objectification and sexual gratification. We can do this by encouraging women to dress, and live, according to their values, beliefs, and aspirations.
It's not selfish, slutty, or prudish, to know - and live by - your limits.
On the other hand, it's important that we simultaneously grapple with our collective tendency to downplay women's sexuality. We are full people with complex narratives. Let's try not to oversimplify our humanity.
I love that Amanda and the Larkspur brand appreciate the full humanity of women and honor it.
Larkspur focuses on comfortable, wearable pieces that make you feel empowered:
At Larkspur, we want to find the place between fantasy and reality, to make a place where women can be more comfortable with their bodies, and be more comfortable with expressing their true selves and their own fantasies. We are exhausted of society pressuring us to be a different person or a different shape than we are, especially while wearing our underwear.
This ethos expands into materials sourcing, as well. Larkspur uses organic cotton, sustainable modal, and high quality factory remnants for the health of the wearer and the planet. Items are handmade in Los Angeles.
Amanda suggested the Luella bra for me, because my skin is sensitive and I've had comfort issues with underwire bras in the past. I love the gray and navy tones and the subtly patterned straps, plus the bra actually fits, unlike the vast majority of conventional bras on the market (it's hard out there for an A cup!).
I'm glad I got the chance to review something with a mission and a style that I love and I'm looking forward to spending my days feeling comfortable and confident in my own skin.
Clothes (and underwear) don't make the woman, but they certainly help us live into the people we want to be.
*A point of clarification on my use of the term, "real bodies": Speaking as someone who was so thin in high school that people regularly asked if I had an eating disorder, I generally avoid using terms like "real bodies" and "real women," because they tend to imply that models and conventionally attractive women aren't, in fact, real. When I use it here, I mean that Larkspur doesn't feel beholden to traditional silhouettes, measurements, or contours, because they realize that real women (meaning all women) prefer garments that move with them over garments that merely look good on the hanger.