Thursday, September 02, 2010

style v. location

i got a text message tuesday morning at 10:25 from annie. she was standing in a mirror and taking a picture of herself in a knee-length royal-blue skirt-suit. "elaine dress is moving back to VT!". she is moving back to burlington today (after her year living in argentina followed by her year of living in silver spring, maryland) and was trying to figure out what she wanted to pack up with her (difficult!). we used to joke that she dressed like seinfeld's elaine when we were living in the green mountain state (note the recent new york times article, the elaine benes look re-appears as new york style) and it had me thinking of how location is so closely related to how one dresses.

on a recent trip home to connecticut, i found a duffel bag filled with the white gauzy dresses that were my vermont summer staple. everyday felt dreamy and i was outfitted accordingly. annie had a different take on fashion. she'd dress as a 13-year-old figure skater, a bavarian girl scout, and more often than not, elaine. clothing was costume and burlington inspired creativity. even during my trip up there in october for alumni weekend, i contemplated buying an authentic square-dancing ensemble (in blue gingham, naturally), but chose a dress that was akin to a 1970s airline stewardess instead.

and in new york!

it's no secret that downtown manhattan girls have incredible style. when i first moved here, i was baffled by it. how did people just look so wonderfully put together? it was beyond what i was used to. when i was in college, t-shirts, side-braids and wild amounts of tie dye (groovy uv!) were my general uniform. and in the beginning of my time here, i was amazed by new york fashion. everywhere, on every street, there were impossibly cool, stylish people. i was bumbling around with nice clothes and everything, but completely lacked any certain style or direction. and trust me, i was acutely aware of how unaware i was.

and then i started to feel more and more alert to what i liked and what i wanted and realized it's not about fitting into any particular style but about identifying my own. feeling good and feeling like myself. last weekend, emily wasn't sure of what to wear so i helped her put together an outfit. but it just wasn't her, it was me and so she changed out of it. i guess it's just like finding a fragrance that's just so clearly meant for you, or finding a hobby that you excel in. you'll most likely have to spend a lot of time to figure out what you like and what you don't. it takes effort but figuring it all out is mostly fun and kind of funny.


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