Room: Do you think fashion is feminist?
Stacey McKenzie: I do believe that fashion can empower women, but at the same time there is so much negative in the industry. A girl goes on a casting, say ten castings for the day, and out of those ten castings she’s not tall enough, she’s not beautiful enough, or she’s very different looking. There are a lot of negative things that come with [fashion] and it depends on the person and how they take that. How do they respond to that kind of feedback?
I think fashion can be quite empowering. It was empowering for me. At the beginning [ pf my career] it wasn’t so empowering because it started to get personal. I started to feel less of myself. I told myself that this was the career that I really wanted to pursue and strongly believed that I was meant to be in this industry. I was going to give myself a certain amount of time and if it didn’t work out I was going to walk away from it because I’m not going to continue trying and be put down and told you’re never, never, never. There’s only so much of that you can take. I was able to be strong for myself, I said this is what I look like, this is what I sound like, get over it!
-Stacey Mckenzie in “On Fashion, Professionalism, and Self-Esteem,” an interview by Taryn Hubbard in Room Vol. 37.1