Read Surveys (By Author)
1. When do you feel at your most attractive?
I feel most attractive when I have just shaved my legs and trimmed my pubes and have gone at least a couple of days without drinking and with exercising and going to bed at a reasonable hour. I also feel most attractive when I have something special to go to and I get someone else to do my hair.
2. Do you notice women on the street? If so, what sort of women do you tend to notice or admire?
Yes, I notice women on the street. I notice when they wear something provocative but flattering, like they know what works about their body and how to accentuate it. I notice and admire when women know how to walk flawlessly in heels. I notice when women are thin and stylish or voluptuous and stylish. I notice and admire when they look much more comfortable than I imagine I look.
3. What are some things you admire about how other women present themselves?
I notice and admire when they present themselves with confidence, which is mostly reflected in their posture. I notice and admire when women know how to wear just the right amount of bold accessories so that one particular thing stands out but they don't look gaudy. I notice when they know how to style their hair and do their makeup in a really skilled way so that it looks like they've done nothing at all and wake up naturally beautiful.
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?
When I was in 7th grade, My So Called Life was at its peak. I was chubby with thin legs and felt truly pretty in babydoll dresses a la Angela Chase. When I turned 30 I started diligently dry-cleaning my nice clothes, because I was tired of looking almost clean and put-together.
5. What are some shopping rules you wouldn’t necessarily recommend to others but which you follow?
I never buy the least expensive of something even if I like it the most because I figure it's probably cheap. I often buy the smallest size I can fit into, even if it's not the most comfortable size, just to feel like I have proof of being skinny. If I see a woman wearing something unusual that I like, I run out and buy it and usually only wear it the day after I buy it.
6. What are some rules about dressing you follow, but you wouldn't necessarily recommend to others?
I use a lot of safety pins instead of getting my clothes properly tailored, which I think must make me look a little trashy. I often wear wireless bras or sports bras that make my tits look smaller because that also makes me look thinner. I wear clothing with animals on it almost every day, that probably looks pretty childish for a woman of 32.
7. What is the most transformative conversation you have ever had on the subject of fashion or style?
I made friends with a woman about 25 years old than me through an exercise class. She is incredibly stylish so I asked her to come shopping with me when I had to get something fancy for a special event. She took my to a store with so many things I would never try on because I just assumed they wouldn't be flattering on me, but they were and the night I wore the dress I picked with her I felt more beautiful than I ever have.
8. Do you have a unified way of approaching your life, work, relationships, finances, chores, etc.? Please explain.
I go in spurts of caring about all of those things. Then I get apathetic about all of them and ignore them for months, then I get motivated again for no apparent reason.
9. Are there any clothing (or related) items that you have in multiple? Why do you think you keep buying this thing?
The same pair of skinny jeans from Madewell because I think they are flattering. Many pairs of Tom's Shoes and Converse because they are comfortable. Bras from the Gap because I think they make my boobs look good. Clothes with lots of animals on them because I just really love animals and sometimes I am at work and I see my necklace with a cat on it and I think of my cats at home and it just makes my heart feel so soft.
10. Have you ever successfully given someone a present of jewelry or clothing that you continue to feel good about?
Yes, I once got my friend the perfect earrings that she has worn many years since. They looked like feathers and they were made of leather.
11. Is there any fashion trend you’ve refused to participate in and why?
Maybe any trend with real fur. I thought I'd always be opposed to mid-drift shirts because I am self-conscious about my stomach. But since they've been back in style I've loosened up a bit.
12. Can you say a bit about how your mother’s body and style has been passed down to you, or not?
My mother is incredibly elegant but always chooses something really unusual to feature in every outfit, like a piece of jewelry or a strange cut. I try to do that to, to make my clothing striking but simple. She also wears beautiful striking colors, and I do that too. I have never been someone who could wear just black and white.
13. Have you stolen, borrowed or adapted any dressing ideas or actual items from friends or family?
I always thought short boots without socks where gross until my best friend started wearing them and now I do it all the time. I try to dress better for work nowadays because all my friends at work do and they look so pretty. I try to take more risks with clothes that fit my body differently because they encourage it. I think if left to my own devices I would wear brightly colored sacs with tights and boots every day.
14. Was there a point in your life when your style changed dramatically? What happened?
Not really. I lost a lot of weight before the summer of my 6th grade year. I think after that I started to care much more about clothing.
15. Is there anything political about the way you dress?
I work in an incredibly male-dominated but casual field, I am a comedy writer for a television show, but I still want to feel beautiful and look good when I go to work. I feel like it's more political than it should be that I don't make a huge effort to be completely sexless in the way I dress, because there is always some pressure for women in the field I work in to downplay their femaleness.
16. Please describe your body.
I am thin. I have thin but strong arms and thin but strong legs. I am five feet five inches tall. The weight I carry is around my gut. I have a shortish torso and not too much of a waist. I wish I had super bangin' curves. But I have a nice strong round butt and small but perky enough tits. I just wish I had that flat stomach and tiny waist.
17. Please describe your mind.
I am capable of unusual thoughts and perspectives, which I think keeps me afloat among smart people, but I find it hard to hold in my head a lot of basic things that smart people seem to know. I have a lot of feelings. I am often unhappy though I lead a very fortunate life. I am narcissistic but wish I were less so. I feel guilty. My mind is capable of striking playfulness and thoughtfulness and deep pettiness and ungratefulness and insecurity.
18. Please describe your emotions.
I have no mind without feelings! I am very emotional. I feel sad about things that I shouldn't feel sad about, like when I see a rat that's been squashed on the bike path because it makes me think of my cats at home who probably don't have any more malice than that poor rat. I feel lonely even though I am in love, I think really for real, and I have wonderful friends. I feel often insufficient even though I have a coveted job. Mostly I feel aimless.
19. What are you wearing on your body and face, and how is your hair done, right at this moment?
I am wearing mascara and a little bit of eyeliner for makeup. I am wearing a striped red and white low cut linen t-shirt. I am wearing a black zipper hoodie but I am wearing it unzipped. I am wearing black shorts. I am wearing red Tom's shoes. I am wearing my hair up in a loose bun pinned with a barrette.
20. In what way is this stuff important, if at all?
It is comfortable. I came home from work wearing skinny jeans and my hair down and I just wanted to be comfortable so I put my hair up and changed into looser clothing. I am wearing eye makeup because I don't really like wearing makeup but I think my eyes are something I'd like to accentuate.
21. With whom do you talk about clothes?
With my friends at work, with my older friend with whom I exercise. With my boyfriend when he compliments me on what I'm wearing
22. How do institutions affect the way you dress?
I live in New York and dress a lot more casual than most women in New York because my work is more casual than most places here.
23. Do you think you have taste or style? Which one is more important? What do these words mean to you?
Taste. Taste is about everything, about choosing things/people/art that truly make you happy because of your good intuition. Style is just about what looks good.
24. Do you remember the biggest waste of money you ever made on an item of clothing?
Right after I graduated from college I had a big job interview and my parents gave me $100 to buy myself something presentable to wear, like a suit or something. But I spent the money on gold lame espadrilles which I wore with old black pants to my interview. I haven't worn them since.
25. Are there any dressing tricks you’ve invented or learned that make you feel like you’re getting away with something?
Bras without underwire make you look skinny! If you have small enough boobs...
26. Do you have style in any areas of your life aside from fashion?
I don't know how to answer that.
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?
I put on sweats when I feel lonely. I wear a dress I feel confident in when I'm around new people.
28. Would you say you “know what you like” in the area of fashion and clothing? If so, do you also know what you like in other areas of life, that is, are you generally good at discernment? Can you say where your discernment comes from, if you have it? Or if you don’t have it, why or why not?
I think I know what I like. I am probably the least so of my family, but I think they in general are good, smart, no bullshit people who have taught me to surround myself with people who are sincere and not super self-involved. I may be, but my friends are not!
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 mom said never shave above the knees, but I don't know if that was a great suggestion.
30. What sorts of things do you do, clothing or make-up or hair- wise, to feel sexy or alluring?
Hair down and messy. Smelling good. Feeling clean. Wearing clothes that aren't too tight but flattering.
31. Many people say they want to feel “comfortable,” or that they admire people who seem “confident.” What do these words really mean to you?
I guess it means the nerve to try new things, to wear different kinds of clothes than the same-old. Even when a woman wears something that is beautiful but maybe not the most flattering, but wears it and doesn't seem self-conscious because the article of clothing itself is beautiful, that feels like confidence to me. Also good position and warmth.
32. If dressing were the only thing you did, and you were considered an expert and asked to explain your style philosophy, what would you say?
The slightest bit of flashy on a generally simple palette. Bright colors, but not too many bright colors. Sexy and flattering in all the right places.
33. What is really beautiful, for you, in general?
Animals. Being outside. Moments that feel very genuine.
34. What do you consider very ugly?
Not caring whether you're a good or bad person, only wanting to be interesting. Houndstooth. Being super into pot after you're 30. Women railing on the female sex.
35. Are you generally a good judge of whether what you buy will end up being worn? Have you figured out how to know in advance?
No I am not.
36. When you look at yourself before going out, and you are trying to see yourself from the outside, can you describe a bit about what this “other person” is like? What do they like, dislike, what sorts of judgments do they have? Is this “outer eye” based on someone you know or once knew?
They think I have a very pretty and fresh face.
What’s your birth date? Where were you born and where do you live now?
I was born September 5th, 1982. I was born in Denver, Colorado. I now live in New York.
Say anything you like about your cultural/ethnic/economic background.
I am western by way of pioneer/swedish/irish parents.
What kind of work do you do?
I am a comedy writer for a television show.
Are you single, married, do you have kids, etc.?
I am single with no kids.
How do you feel after filling out this survey?
Like I railed on myself too much, like I came off very insecure.