Read Surveys (By Author)
Feliz Lucia Molina
2. Do you notice women on the street? If so, what sort of women do you tend to notice or admire?
I’m drawn to the kind of woman who doesn’t notice me and who very naturally goes about doing whatever she’s doing. It might result in a fleeting crush. I have felt simultaneous desire and resentment for a beautiful and intelligent woman.
3. What are some things you admire about how other women present themselves?
Intelligence, effort, empathy, and never feeling good enough.
4. Was there a moment in your life when something “clicked” for you about fashion or dressing or make-up or hair? What? Why did it happen then, do you think?
These moments happen often in a thrift store, usually, when I see something that I haven’t seen anyone else wear before. I pay attention to color and pattern and lastly, the shape and cut. In college I became mildly obsessed with what famous authors wore. I looked at a lot of authors and philosophers on the internet to have a sense of what their bodies and clothes were like. It almost felt like I’d have a better sense of them by looking at their clothes.
10. Have you ever successfully given someone a present of jewelry or clothing that you continue to feel good about?
I hope this will be a future wedding ring.
11. Is there any fashion trend you’ve refused to participate in and why?
No, but I have rebelled against the bun directly on top of the head. Once I see a fad or trend I lose interest.
21. With whom do you talk about clothes?
My friend Anna Le Roy
22. How do institutions affect the way you dress?
I quit my job partly because of it.
23. Do you think you have taste or style? Which one is more important? What do these words mean to you?
Taste comes before style because its closer to ethics.
24. Do you remember the biggest waste of money you ever made on an item of clothing?
25. Are there any dressing tricks you’ve invented or learned that make you feel like you’re getting away with something?
I've learned that being comfortable in my body and mind can make me get away with anything.
26. Do you have style in any areas of your life aside from fashion?
27. Can you recall some times when you have dressed a particular way to calm yourself or gain a sense of control over a situation that scared you?
Putting on lipstick, mascara, or eyeliner alone in a car on the side of a road or while driving slowly in traffic.
29. Did your parents teach you things about clothing, care for your clothing, dressing or style? What lessons do you remember? Or did you just pick things up?
My parents are Filipino immigrants who came to Los Angeles in the late 1960s. They were hippies and kept a lot of their clothes, especially my dad. Their style evolved over time as they grew older, but at a young age it was sort of instinctual for me to wear their old clothes. In college I tried to cut up some of her old dresses because the patterns were cool.
In the 1980s they owned and managed board & care homes. One of the patients who lived with us taught me how to tie shoe laces. I remember being curious about all the patient’s clothes and would sneak into their rooms to look at their closets. My parents wanted me to
wear dresses when we went to church.
Eventually, my old bedroom and another room in the house turned into a kind of museum of my mom’s old clothes which I would like to document.
60. What do you think of perfume? Do you wear it?
65. What is your favorite piece of clothing or jewelry that you own?
an engagement ring.
67. Looking back at all your purchases over the past five to fifteen years, can you generalize about what sorts of things were the most valuable to buy?
The most worthwhile things have been books. Also, two laptops, cell-phones, my rabbit, travel bags, airplane tickets, and furniture.
72. Was there ever an important or paradigm-shifting purchase in your life?
Usually its books.
75. Were you ever given a present of clothing or jewelry that especially touched you?
While traveling through Sedona, Arizona, my boyfriend gave me a silver and turquoise ring. My fiancé’s mother gave me a silver necklace and turquoise pendant of a Zuni bear.
My mother strangely gives me her jewelry when there’s a family funeral, right before the wake. In northern India I attended a Tibetan wedding and the family I stayed with gave me a beautiful Chinese silk chuba dress that came with a silk lilac blouse. It was a sign of gratitude.
80. How does money fit into all this?
Money is always a problem.
81. Is there an article of clothing, a piece of make-up, or an accessory that you carry with you or wear every day?
83. Do you remember the first time you were conscious of what you were wearing? Can you describe this moment and what it was about?
I remember wearing brown and yellow uniform and black shoes in pre-school. I can't remember where, just the colors, pattern, and texture.
Say anything you like about your cultural/ethnic/economic background.
What kind of work do you do?
poet and occasional teacher
Feliz Lucia Molina is the author of Undercastle and a co-author of The Wes Letters. She lives in Los Angeles.