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Elisa Chaudet

1. When do you feel at your most attractive?

when im wearing lipstick. when my collar bone is exposed.

2. Do you notice women on the street? If so, what sort of women do you tend to notice or admire?

swanky women. mysterious women. quirky women. mismatched women.

3. What are some things you admire about how other women present themselves?

genuine personal aesthetics. themed outfits.

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?

at the end of high school when i stopped trying to be a certain style and just wore whatever i liked.

5. What are some shopping rules you wouldn’t necessarily recommend to others but which you follow?


6. What are some rules about dressing you follow, but you wouldn't necessarily recommend to others?


7. What is the most transformative conversation you have ever had on the subject of fashion or style?

talking to my friends about themed outfits. having style goals. last year mine was being a 90s witch. this year its a 1940s nancy drew femme fatale look.

8. Do you have a unified way of approaching your life, work, relationships, finances, chores, etc.? Please explain.

it really depends on what.

9. Are there any clothing (or related) items that you have in multiple? Why do you think you keep buying this thing?

yes. when you find a bra that works. never let it go.

10. Have you ever successfully given someone a present of jewelry or clothing that you continue to feel good about?


11. Is there any fashion trend you’ve refused to participate in and why? 

yes. uggs. feathers in hair shit.

12. Can you say a bit about how your mother’s body and style has been passed down to you, or not?

yes. it is a different aesthetic but we both appreciate eclecticism. and thrift shopping.

13. Have you stolen, borrowed or adapted any dressing ideas or actual items from friends or family?


14. Was there a point in your life when your style changed dramatically? What happened?

yes. i tried being 'edgy' when i was 14. too much eyeliner.

15. Is there anything political about the way you dress?

i try to be an empowered young woman.

16. Please describe your body.

tall. thin.

17. Please describe your mind.

eclectic. fast. quirky. silly. creative. artistic. colorful. thoughtful.

18. Please describe your emotions.

stressed. busy. tired. neutral. impatient.

19. What are you wearing on your body and face, and how is your hair done, right at this moment?

minimal makeup. a little mascara and lipstick. hair is naturally curly bob. black jeans. grey and black stripped shirt with a scoop neck. black boots. grey polka dot tights. moon tattoo on my left ring finger. green apple earrings, and one gold star earring on my left ear. its been very rainy this week.

20. In what way is this stuff important, if at all?

having control over how i choose to look or present myself or express myself makes me feel good and organized with my personal aesthetic. also as an artist, if i want to change my color palette or style or mood. my clothes will reflect. changing that part of my life, aids me in changing my work. it gets me in the proper mindset that i want to be in.

21. With whom do you talk about clothes?

friends. my mom.

22. How do institutions affect the way you dress?

i just began working as a designer in an architecture firm. i can't dress as quirky as i usually would. my outfits tend to be rather plain at work in order to seem more professional.

23. Do you think you have taste or style? Which one is more important? What do these words mean to you?

yes. and neither.

i think both go hand in hand. i dont really care though. i just wear what i like and what makes me comfortable and happy.

24. Do you remember the biggest waste of money you ever made on an item of clothing?

every time i go to salvation army is a guilty pleasure....... but worth it :)

25. Are there any dressing tricks you’ve invented or learned that make you feel like you’re getting away with something?

not wearing bras under certain shirts.

26. Do you have style in any areas of your life aside from fashion?

yes. photography, art, design, book making, video art.

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?

yes. retail therapy is such a thing. and red lipstick makes me feel empowered.

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?

um...... i have very random eclectic taste. colorful, yet organized.

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 taught me about matching when i was a little girl. no mixing patterns. make sure colors dont clash. now i can choose to disagree with her at times though.

i can also get really anal about mixing browns and blacks, but that has been on my own accord.

30. What sorts of things do you do, clothing or make-up or hair- wise, to feel sexy or alluring?

my bangs must be straightened. mascara and lipstick.

clothes that fit.

im pretty casual.

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 think you can be both at the same time if you'd like. they aren't mutually exclusive. it all depends on who you are and what makes you feel comfortable or confident.

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?

do whatever the fuck you want. experiment. be creative. choose themes everyday. have fun. be silly.

33. What is really beautiful, for you, in general?

beauty comes in so many different forms i really cant say just one.

i think women that can shave their head are amazing. and have face piercings. i could never do that.

34. What do you consider very ugly?

people that rely on false elegance. name brands. fake tans. i enjoy kitsch and being tacky with the knowledge that you're being tacky because you find it amusing. but being tacky, but not knowing you're being tacky is unnerving. thinking you're being tasteful. but its really just too much. the 'default' style if you will.

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?


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?

no. sometimes. depends who i pretend to be when im looking at myself.

37. What is your process getting dressed in the morning? What are you considering?

i have my outfit chosen already usually. i usually just shower, do my minimal hair and makeup. and throw that outfit on. i consider what will be done that day and the weather. who will see me occasionally.

38. What are you trying to achieve when you dress?


39. What, for you, is the difference between dressing and dressing up?

dressing up is fancy.

40. If you had to wear a “uniform” what would it look like?

twin peaks.

41. What would you say is “you” and what would you say is “not you”?

spooky, but sparkly is me.

50s is not.

42. What is your cultural background and how has that influenced how you dress?

my father is french. my mother is jewish american.

my mother grew up in long island and was very much against being labeled a stereotypical 'jewish american princess'. she went out of her way to dress in used clothing and indian fabrics. somewhere in between being a hippie and a punk i suppose. her thrifty nature definitely rubbed off on me.

43. Do you remember a time in your life when you dressed quite differently from how you do now? Can you describe it and what it was all about for you?

yes. briefly in 6th grade when i tried fitting in and dressing like everyone i went to school with. then giving up on that because my parents wouldnt buy me those expensive clothes. then i tried being a punk, but i was 14 so it was pretty lame. then i just stopped thinking about it and started wearing whatever i like.

44. What sorts of things do you do, clothing, make-up or hair-wise, to feel professional?

look clean. casual dresses. no crazy patterns. collard shirts.

45. How do you conform to or rebel against the dress expectations at your workplace?

i was using this purple metallic heart shaped bag. but then the zipper broke.

46. Do you have a dress code, a school uniform, or a uniform that you wear for an extracurricular activity?


47. Are there ways in which you conform to or rebel against these uniforms?


48. Do you find it comforting or constraining to have a uniform?


49. What is an archetypal outfit for you; one that you could have happily worn at any point in your life? What do you like about it?

a skirt. a shirt. tights.

its open to interpretation. it can be any style. but those are the basics.

50. Do you ever wish you were a man or could dress like a man or had a man’s body? Was there ever a time in the past?

no. although sometimes dressing more androgynous can be fun. but i've never dressed in drag.

51. If there was one country or culture or era that you had to live in, fashion-wise, what would it be?

1940s. 1970s. 1990s.

52. Do you consider yourself photogenic?


53. When you see yourself in photographs, what do you think?


54. Are there any figures from culture, past or present, whose style you admire or have drawn from?

all the women on twin peaks. nancy drew. witches.

55. Have you ever had a dream that involved clothes?


56. What would be a difficult or uncomfortable look for you to try and achieve?

not sure.

57. If you were totally comfortable with your body, or your body was a bit closer to what you wish it was like, what would you wear?

looser clothes. im pretty thin so i get lost easily.

58. Is there anyone that you are trying to attract or repel when you dress?

depends where i am or who im with

59. Are there any dressing rules you’d want to convey to other women?

do whatever you want! fuck society!

60. What do you think of perfume? Do you wear it?

yes. its nice.

61. What are some things you need to do to your body or clothes in order to feel presentable?

have my clothes fit.

62. How does makeup fit into all this for you?

yes. mascara.

63. Is there a certain look you feel you’re expected to like that you have absolutely no interest in? What is it? Why aren’t you interested?

whatever is at the mall

64. Can you describe in a basic way what you own, clothing and jewelry-wise?


65. What is your favorite piece of clothing or jewelry that you own?

clothing - this black mini skirt with small embroidered fruit along the bottom edge

66. Tell us about something in your closet that you keep but never wear. What is it, why don’t you wear it, and why do you keep it?

this dress my ex boyfriend gave me. it was a weird break up.

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?

things ill never grow out of.

68. Is there an item of clothing that you once owned, but no longer own, and still think about or wish you had back? What was it, what happened to it, and why do you want it back?

my flair jeans! so early 2000s. nostalgia.

69. If you had to throw out all your clothes but keep one thing, what would you keep?

my black jeans.

70. Building up your wardrobe from nothing, what would you do differently this time?

nothing probably. i always try to find unique items.

71. What’s the first “investment” item you bought? Do you still own or wear it?


72. Was there ever an important or paradigm-shifting purchase in your life?

makeup probably. this year i started wearing more nail polish.

73. What item of clothing are you still (or have you forever been) on the hunt for?

a blue sweater with white stars! a pink sweater with a carousel on it! angora crop top sweater! ah!

74. What are your closet and drawers like? Do you keep things neat, etc?


75. Were you ever given a present of clothing or jewelry that especially touched you?

my ex gave me that dress

76. Did you ever buy an article of clothing without giving it much thought, only to have it prove much more valuable as time went on? What was the item and what happened?

i dont think so

77. How and when do you shop for clothes?

randomly. salvation army. thrift stores. consignment shops.

78. Do you like to smell a certain way?


79. How does how you dress play into your ambitions for yourself?

as an artist, if i want to change my color palette or style or mood. my clothes will reflect. changing that part of my life, aids me in changing my work. it gets me in the proper mindset that i want to be in.

80. How does money fit into all this?

i try to not spend more than 10 dollars on items. unless theyre very special.

81. Is there an article of clothing, a piece of make-up, or an accessory that you carry with you or wear every day?

right now--my magnifying glass necklace.

82. Did anyone ever say anything to you that made you see yourself differently, on a physical and especially sartorial level?

in 7th grade someone said i had a big nose. i kind of never got that one out of my head.

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?

6th grade when youd get made fun of for not having the most expensive clothes. dumb.

What’s your birth date? 
Where were you born and where do you live now?


Grenoble, France

Between Somerville, NJ and Purchase, NY

Say anything you like about your cultural/ethnic/economic background.

i have grown to love my jew curls.

What kind of work do you do?

i am a student, but i work part time in marketing and designing for this architectural firm.

Are you single, married, do you have kids, etc.?


Please say anything you like about yourself that might put this survey into some sort of context.

i am an artist. i work in photography, video, and book making.

How do you feel after filling out this survey?

sleepy. its also finals week though and i am procrastinating.

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