Monday, March 30, 2015
Bianca, like most of us, doesn't expend an enormous amount of energy thinking about her clothes. She likes things that are "comfortable" and fit well, and tends to wear items she likes over and over again. Those jeggings, for instance, she, wears year round. They were "really cheap," but "they're just comfortable, even if it's like hot or cold outside." They kind of "go with whatever [she's] doing." The boots are Steve Madden, and she wears them all the time too. They are also "comfortable." The jacket is a men's jacket. Bianca says about half her clothes are men's clothes. "I just like the way it fits," she says, of the jacket. You may notice a theme here. Comfort is the primary criterion for what Bianca wears. She describes her style as "comfortable" and chooses clothes that feel comfortable on her. Just don't start thinking "comfortable" is a value-neutral term, some objective description of the way at item fits or feels. We are "comfortable" in clothes that fit "us," not just our bodies, clothes that match our current conception of self, that enable us to move smoothly through social situations without attracting undue attention or getting in the way of what we long to become.
Friday, March 27, 2015
Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Lydia is a heavy metal guitarist without a huge amount of time to shop. So she buys most of her clothes "really cheap on Amazon." "I used to be a big thrifter," she told me. But "thrift stores are different than they used to be. Now that everybody does eBay, the racks are empty." In these shots, Lydia is wearing a fake red leather jacket, customized and detailed by her friend, fake leather pants, and some good old-fashioned combat boots, laced halfway up. Fake leather, it seems, is going through something of a renaissance at the moment. I've seen it on around half the people I've stopped these last few weeks. It's been a while, however, since I've heard anyone refer to it as "pleather." Part of fake leather's online rebranding, perhaps?
Monday, March 23, 2015
Arthur is the artist, graphic designer, and co-founder behind MollyMachine, a local T-shirt company.
Friday, March 20, 2015
Wednesday, March 18, 2015
Megan's a Reading, PA native, but not some knee-jerk, dyed in the wool Phillies fan. The starter jacket, she told me, she bought as a gift for a friend of hers online. It turned out to be too small for her friend. "I didn't realize it was supposed to be a youth large, and I [thought I] ordered a regular large," she told me. "And then it came, and I thought, ok, I get a new jacket!"
Megan's pants are vintage Gap. Her shoes are navy blue penny loafers. She doesn't know the brand. Why would she? Thrift store shopping is about finding what you can find. It takes patience and a certain casual disregard for the label-obsession of the status-conscious.
Monday, March 16, 2015
"I would describe my style," said Michael, standing on the corner of 16th and Walnut, "like a food that you like. Like you like pizza. [But] if I could describe my style it would be like ice cream. That's what I would describe it as. Anybody can say urban. Urban is urban. I really don't know. I just like my flavor of cake or ice cream."
Michael does a lot of his shopping at Zara, and much of what he is wearing is from there. There and Target. He doesn't think so much about brands. He thinks about flavors, getting the flavor he likes.
As a general strategy for putting together an outfit, he'll select one or two relatively nice things that he likes — this "leather" motorcycle vest from Macys, for instance, or that pair of Doc Martens boots — and he'll build the rest of his look around it. "I just match off of that," he said. "Like, my jacket may be the thing that costs the most on me, and I just go cheaper from there."
Friday, March 13, 2015
The pants James is wearing were made by a friend from Africa — James wasn't sure which part. He had just met her at a friend of his' place in the Bronx. She, apparently, liked James' and his brothers' sense of style and threw together some pants for them "right then and there."
The shoes, of course, are the original Air Jordans. They are now iconic. I recognized them from across the street.
The T-shirt is Billionaire Boys' Club. "Pharrell is like my idol," said James. The bomber jacket is from H&M. "I needed something simple, so I could style it up the way I wanted to." In this case, that includes a pendant by a friend of his who goes by "Easy Summers." His brand, through which he distributes his pendants, is called Natural Born Heartbreakers. All his designs feature a broken heart. The ring he got through the website of a new California company called Golden Gods. The necklace is from a brand with a bit more storied of a history. It's Chanel.
As for those glasses: "They aren't really anything special. They are just prescription. They were prescribed to me, because I can't see."