What is Koeksuster
Having thought about, talked about and campaigned about Koeksuster for the past six months, sitting down and putting the idea of Koeksuster to words now seems impossible. The concept of Koeksuster seems to be constantly evolving and growing into a bigger project.
Lets start at the beginning, the name Koeksuster. The word "koek” is Afrikaans slang for a woman who is extremely conservative. In simplest terms a koek would be the Afrikaans word for a prude. Koeksuster is a play on the Afrikaans word koeksister which is a dessert. Suster is the Afrikaans word for sister and so Koeksuster is a combination of all of the above ideas to form my alter ego.
The name was chosen for the brand, because I felt a loss of representation in feminist circles for women who are not extremely vocal about who they are sexualy. Although I support feminists who can blog and talk publicly about all aspects of their lives and support all that they are saying, this feminist confidence often made feminist platforms very intimidating and hard to approach. Koeksuster thus wants to voice that we need a more inclusive and inviting feminism. In short we want to promote a message that tells girls you can be of any size, color or sexual orientation and still wear beautiful lingerie purely for yourself.
About a year ago I started to conceptualize this project that I now call Koeksuster. I set out to disrupt the patriarchy and crash all the glass ceilings, but as I set up to start understanding the vast world of feminism, I slowly started to realize being a Feminist is not just as simple as burning the bra and shunning your razor. Unlike Kylie Jenner claimed 2016 was not the year of realizing stuff, quite the contrary I was and still am confronted with so many questions as to what feminism is, how to navigate the complexities of a socially and politically conscious brand and lifestyle. So the past six months have consisted of me reading all of the feminist literature, blog posts, online debates and even academic writings, I could get my hands on, to somehow wrap my head around gender equality. Only blog post after blog post I came to realize that feminism is not that easy to define. I now can admit that I do not fully understand feminism and cannot promise that I ever will. I now understand that feminism is forever changing and as Kathleen Hanna explains in Fifty Shades of Feminism;
"There's just as many different kinds of feminism as there are women in the world.”
Koeksuster is all of us, trying to make sense of society and what role feminism plays in our everyday lives. I wanted Koeksuster to be a feminist brand, but by researching feminism I got caught up in how to be a perfect feminist and how to perfect my brand. but I think feminism is not about being perfect. Feminism to me is acknowledging that you want to move consciously through the hurdles life throws at you.
The Koeksuster brand aims to not only sell a product, but sell an idea. To do this Koeksuster aims to be a content creator and curator, through a blogging platform. Thus not only do we have an online shop, but we also run a blogging platform celebrating and sharing feminist ideas from all over, with the goal to promote critical thinking about all things feminism.