Style icons such as Diane Keaton, Katharine Hepburn, and Jane Birkin have epitomized the tomboy aesthetic, which found its niche starting around the 1930’s, yet has always remained in style. “Tomboy Style: Beyond the Boundaries of Fashion,” a library of sorts for the style phenomenon, was helmed by Lizzy Garret Mettler, a true tomboy herself, who also writes the successful blog Tomboy Style. Mettler highlights the past 80 years in fashion, detailing the history of the style, its icons, and its minutiae, including the seven different types of tomboy (the rebel, sophisticate, jock, prep, adventuress, the girl next door, and the naturalist).
Tomboy style has spiked in popularity in recent history, partially due to the more open nature of gender lines. Public figures such as Agyness Deyn, Annie Lennox, and David Bowie have exposed androgyny to a greater audience, helping to break gender stereotypes. With the short lifespan of trends, some of which raise society’s expectations of femininity to drastic (and uncomfortable) heights, this casual, yet nevertheless trendy look is welcome change from some of fashion’s rules and restraint. Mettler believes that the tomboy style isn’t simply a style, but a “spirit” that women embody. Maintaining this accessibility and functionality, the tomboy style is free of being labeled as simply a trend, allowing an outlet for self-expression and inner confidence to a degree that few trends are able to.