Sisterhood and solidarity: An Ode to High School and Coming of Age
South African feminist sleepwear and intimates brand, Koeksuster, recently shot its biggest campaign yet, a fashion film directed by Thea Small. The project explores the theme of sisterhood and solidarity and the creative team consider it an ode to high school and coming of age. It is a nostalgic look back on high school and what that experience could and should have been.
“Coming of age can be a very vulnerable time; you feel scrutinized by society and even more so by your peers. As teens we are constantly policing ourselves to act in accordance to what’s deemed appropriate by society. We feel insecure about our bodies, covering up with towels in the changing room and comparing ourselves to other girls, wondering why we can’t just fit in. High school can be filled with uncomfortable feelings of not fitting in. We felt it was important to reclaim this space and decided to center our film around four girls doing exactly that!”
The director, Thea explained that the essential aim was for the film to be gynocentric. “We wanted to see girls being girls, completely uninhibited, in a space that was completely theirs. You’ll also notice that there’s an absence of male characters as well as authority figures as we didn’t want any distraction or intrusion in the girls’ space.”
The film is a take on the body positive, feminist representations that the creators would have liked to have been exposed to when they were younger. Taking inspiration from some of their favourite feminist creatives, there was a strong desire towards creating a dreamy, hyper-feminine space in which to explore the theme of sisterhood.
“I think it’s important to always protect your sisters, even your sisters that aren’t your friends.”
Above all the film is in essence a celebration of girlhood and as a fashion brand, and especially a lingerie brand, to create unfiltered representations of young women. An inclusive representation that is inspiring, yet relatable.
Watch the whimsical yet powerful product of their collaborative efforts here.