Da Politiken kom forbi - en hyldest til kvindekroppen ❤️

When Politiken came by ❤️

On a Thursday in November, we hosted one of our popular customer evenings at Mondo Kaos. This evening was extra special as we had a visit from Marie Nørgaard Skadhauge, journalist from Politiken, and photographer Marie Hald.

As always, store manager Stine hosted the evening, which started with a presentation about how we women should celebrate our bodies instead of hiding them away.

Then it was time to socialize, chat and try on clothes under expert guidance. We loved that Marie was there to participate, not just to observe as a journalist. What you can read here is her very own account of how she experienced a customer night as someone new to retro style.

"Woman, know your dress: Up with the boobs, out with the top belly"

My wardrobe is black. It has a few patches of colorful clothes for bold days. But most of all, it's black and loose. I feel most comfortable in the soft dark clothes. Here I can hide a little.

Hiding your body is something you often feel like doing when you're fat but want to be thin. At least that's how I've felt for many years. Tighter pants or colored sweaters were only needed when I became slim, I thought.

I'm still not slim. On the other hand, I have learned to love my fat body. I want to stop hiding it. That's why I've made a rule for myself: I can't buy any more black clothes.

The first step on the journey towards tight-fitting colorful clothes is to find someone to help me figure out what to wear when my black turtlenecks are banned. I'm not the only one looking for that help.

I've been invited to a customer evening at the retro shop Mondo Kaos in Nørrebro. Here, manager Stine Omega Jessen and sales assistant Cecilie Bull Klarskov will help eight other women and me find some clothes that show our figure.

The event in Mondo Kaos begins at 18:30. A few minutes before, Stine Omega Jessen takes pity on some guests waiting in the dark rain. They enter the shop, where a long table is set with pink candy, white wine, sparkling water, chips and grapes.

While we wait for the rest, the small talk begins. Several of the women are regular customers in the store. Here they have found their way into a retro style where, with Stine's advice on cut and color, they find clothes that fit as if they were sewn just for them.

Customers also like to come in for a chat while they shop. You can't avoid that as a guest in Mondo Kaos. Especially not if Stine Omega Jessen is at work. She has an almost friend-like relationship with many of her regular customers.

Stine also does most of the talking for the first part of the evening. Quite deliberately, mind you. She has prepared a short presentation as a starting point for the evening's tests. The message is that women should stop being self-conscious and celebrate the body they have.

"Every day I dress women. None of them look like each other, and none of them look like the ones on Instagram. But they look amazing. Unfortunately, I see a lot of women who are so disgusted with themselves," Stine says to the now nodding women.

For the customer evening that Marie attended, Stine had a theme. However, just like the clothes, these events are never 'one size fits all', on the contrary, depending on the group, Stine can choose a focus and she always asks if anyone has specific requests or expectations for the evening. She always focuses on cuts, and that we don't have bodies to be pigeonholed as "apple-shaped", "pear-shaped" etc. but that we all have BODIES and that the clothes should fit the body and not the other way around.

Marie continues:

Then it's time. The clothes have to come off! Stine looks out over the crowd and asks who dares to be the first. I look down at the floor.

I do the same the second time she asks. Even though I've just seen two women come out of the fitting room looking amazing.

In the second round, 63-year-old Merete Lamm is the dress-up doll. Like me, she has worked up her courage beforehand. But she is somewhat quicker than me to overstep her boundaries. Merete Lamm is all smiles as she emerges from the fitting room in a tight-fitting dark blue dress.

"Since I was very young, I haven't liked showing my waist. But this feels amazing! Thanks to my daughter for bringing me in here," is Merete Lamm's reaction to her reflection in the mirror.

Our customer events are for everyone; as the article shows, a mother and daughter came along to the customer evening that journalist Marie attended. At the last customer night we held, three generations came together at the event; mother, daughter and grandmother. The ages around the table ranged from 21 to a woman in her 70s. And likewise, shapes and sizes ranged from xs to xxl.

The beauty of our classic designs is not only that they look good on everyone, but also that they don't hide age.

After Merete, it's my turn. I wish I could say I mustered up the courage and raised my hand myself. The reality is that Stine has spotted my avoidance tactics. She asks me if I want to get dressed.

Inside the fitting room, I have to take off the dress. It's too loose for Stine to see my figure, she thinks. I wonder if I dare tell her that it's one of the tightest dresses I own.

Off comes the dress. Stine thinks hard about what to put on me, and then she disappears into the back room. She comes back with a short A-line dress.

When I put it on, I understand why Stine thought my own dress was loose. In the new tight outfit, my breasts are exposed for the first time in a long time, and there's no hiding my
round belly either. The smile is skeptical as I stagger out in high gold shoes in front of the other women. I can see that I'm getting more figure, precisely because the clothes fit. But I also feel very visible, and I glance longingly at my gray sweater.

Retro gave me confidence

The gray sweater is long forgotten, however, as my reflection later shows my body in a tight-fitting green velour dress. With every dress Stine has thrown on me, I have become more accustomed to the feminine look. The women around me notice this: "You smile more and more every time you leave the fitting room", one of them says.

It's absolutely true. However, it's not just the clothes that put me in a good mood.

The atmosphere in Mondo Kaos has become more and more lively. Now it's almost ecstatic. Nine women of all ages, most of whom didn't know each other before, chatting and laughing like old friends. There is no longer any such thing as a fitting room.

Everywhere in the store, blouses and pants are discarded. The once fully dressed women are now alternating between underwear and new dresses.

Compliments fly everywhere: "You look great!". Several are inspired by the clothes others are wearing. Three end up falling in love with a pair of shiny pink 'candy floss stilettos'.

Merete Lamm and her daughter, Michelle Lamm, have also found things they can't live without. While it's Merete's first time trying on clothes in Mondo Kaos, Michelle Lamm is a regular customer. For her, retro style has become a way to feel comfortable in her body.

"I haven't had much confidence in my body in the past. Here, there's room for being feminine and having a bit of a pot belly. It makes me feel comfortable," says Michelle Lamm.

Merete Lamm is proud of her daughter. She thinks Michelle is brave for standing up for herself with her feminine style. Merete herself attended the customer evening to find inspiration for her daughter's wedding. She is surprised at how much she got out of the customer evening.

"I was touched to see myself in that dress. My wardrobe consists of loose robes. I don't think I'll change my style from one day to the next. But I dare to do something more about it after today," says Merete Lamm.

The table in the middle of the room is now being emptied of wine, crisps and foam candy. The shopping bags, on the other hand, are starting to fill up. With them in their hands, the women leave the store.

I feel the same way as Merete. I am inspired to dare more. But it won't be tomorrow that I go to work in a tight-fitting red dress.

Therefore, there are no bags in my hands when I leave the store.

First, I need to see if my newfound enthusiasm for A-cuts and high heels will follow me from the retro cave into the rain.

We thank Marie for this insightful account of our customer evenings and the beautiful photos taken by Photographer Marie Hald.

The idea of our customer evenings is to create a forum for our attendees to familiarize themselves with a more feminine style under expert guidance. As Marie describes, there's a wonderful looseness to exploring retro style in the company of other women.

If you would like to attend one of our upcoming customer evenings, we have two dates available: Thursday 13.02.20 and Thursday 12.03.2020, both evenings from 18:30-20:30.

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