Lynn-Smith, B. (2023). Sparkles, colour and joy: Exploring the aura of a ‘frocking’ community [Unpublished Master’s thesis]. Alef Trust & Liverpool John Moores University.

The purpose of this ethnographic study was to explore and understand the lived experiences and meaning-making processes of an online social media group called Frock Up Friday and the ritualistic act of ‘frocking up’ during Covid-19 and beyond by identifying cultural themes, how relationships were maintained, and wellbeing supported and if there are any significant impacts that may have taken place. Eleven participants were recruited, and semi-structured interviews were conducted. Participants were two transgender females, one male and eight females hailing from UK, USA and Spain and were aged between 45-71. Data was additionally triangulated from other various sources and analysed by using iterative inductive thematic analysis. Three themes emerged from the data, support, and social connection; growth and creativity; and finally, strangeness. It was found that the ritualistic practice of ‘frocking up’ and the sharing of selfies in their outfits on the site were found to be beneficial in creating a safe space during Covid for self-expression, creativity and self-confidence and was beneficial in increasing well-being overall and endorses a co-creative space towards healing.

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