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Emily G

1. When do you feel at your most attractive?

When I am wearing clothes that I have carefully chosen myself (not necessarily expensive clothes.) It is important for me that I do not own the same items as everyone else though.
I feel best in clothes that I know are interesting and that I am comfortable in. Often when items are new I will feel more excited to wear them.

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

Yes, all the time. I often notice women who are wearing things similar to what I own, or who are wearing things that I have my eye on purchasing. I think you can always tell a woman who takes pride in her appearance and takes pride in wearing interesting clothing. I also notice women who I think are dressed appallingly...

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

Attention to fabrics - attention to textures in their clothing. Interesting shapes in what they wear.
Make up application (because I'm not very good at it)
Confidence to pair items that I would not necessarily put together.

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?

I don't think so...
Probably upon leaving high school, where I had to wear a uniform every day. After beginning art school I started paying way more attention to how I presented myself.

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

Buy clothes based on the provenance of the clothing (ie. is it sustainable), buy clothes based on the fabric quality, buy clothes based on the cult status of the brand. Buy impulsively. Do these things no matter how much money you are spending.

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

Wear something that sets you apart. Wear something that is interesting for the sake of it being interesting.
Try to look like an "artist" (though this can be interpreted however one feels on any given day.)

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

My course director at university jokingly told me I was already an artist because I dressed so perfectly to fit the persona. I was amused but also secretly gratified because it is a persona that I try to cultivate through my dress sense.

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

I am a creative person which I believe is strongly reflected in the way I approach all aspects of my life. I am an intense and often passionate person when I care about something or someone. Finances and chores tend to get an "i'll deal with this later" response, though.

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

I have so many pairs of white pants... I used to be afraid to wear them but now I own several different shapes and styles as I think they look good on me.
I also own many pairs of sneakers for practicality's sake (and because my taste in sneakers is subject to change.)

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

Numerous times!
It is nice to see them continually wearing what I have given them as it means they genuinely like it.

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

There are many. The sneakers with a heel that were popular a few years ago... Flared jeans that have come back in... Generally if I refuse to participate in a trend it is because I don't think it looks good and because I don't want to look like everyone else.

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

My mother has always been overweight. This was not passed down to me genetically, but the mentality of not wanting to be fat that she always has and works for has been passed to me. I have never been overweight. My mother's style was not passed down to me at all, save for her lack of interest in make up, which I also have. If anything my style has been passed on to her.

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

Yes, of course. I feel like everyone does this whether or not they are aware of it.
I have not borrowed ideas from family, but friends definitely have influenced some of the choices I make.

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

This question is similar to question 4. I feel my way of dressing changed dramatically in my second year of university. I stopped wearing clothes that were deliberately hiding my body and embraced my body more. I stopped wearing much colour.

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

Not really. I suppose I am always inherently aware of the fact that I am a woman. I dress sometimes to play to this, and sometimes to hide this.

16. Please describe your body.

I am on a slightly underweight side of average weight. Weight always goes to my boobs and my hips. I have large boobs. I used to be tall, but then everyone else caught up and now I am also fairly average in height. My feet and hands are tiny in comparison to my body though (my grandmother tells me this is a sign of nobility but I am not inclined to believer her.)
I have fat days and skinny days depending on how much or what I am eating. My skin is clear and my posture is pretty bad.

17. Please describe your mind.

I am fairly severely depressed, but have been on medication for this for quite some time. This helps, but it makes my mind foggier than it otherwise would be. I have good days and bad days with my mental state.
I am generally a balanced person but I have moments of over intensity and overthinking. I am of above average intelligence.

18. Please describe your emotions.

I care a lot about the things that interest me and the people close to me. Sometimes I can care too much. I feel strong emotion about everything - never do anything by halves.

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

I am wearing white, tailored pants with a grey skivvy tucked in. I am wearing RM williams work boots that are old and scuffed.
I am wearing tinted moisturiser and have curled my eyelashes. My hair was washed this morning and left to dry naturally.

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

I chose to wear these boots for the first time in a while because I felt bad that I had been neglecting them (I suppose this is important as it means I project emotions onto my clothes. ha.)
I wore little makeup because I knew this would be a day where I wouldn't have much contact with people except at work.

21. With whom do you talk about clothes?

Most people I am friends with or related to... Not constantly but frequently. I have certain friends with whom I discuss favourite brands etc.

22. How do institutions affect the way you dress?

At work I have to wear black and then an apron over this. Some days I wear nice black clothes and other days I don't really care what looks good. Generally I wouldn't wear so much black. On days when I am not at work I tend to try not to wear black.
At university I feel a pressure to be well-dressed.

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

I think I have both taste and style. Neither is really more important to me, but I guess taste probably comes first as you need good taste to have good style. Taste is choosing good items of clothing, style is choosing what looks good with what.

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

I bought a Marques Almeida dress for too much money and then didn't really wear it.
I bought a Jacquemus t-shirt which looked shit on me just because I wanted the brand in my wardrobe.

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

I don't think so...
Having a good pair of RM Williams boots goes a long way as they are basically the perfect shoe for any occasion.

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

As an artist I feel that I have a certain style, in my practical artmaking as well as my writing. Although this does change from time to time.

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?

In instances where I have been inherently aware that I was going to see someone I used to date, or that I didn't like, or greatly respected, I have paid far much more attention to what I am wearing.

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?

Yes I definitely have a sense of discernment in the area of fashion. And equally yes, I have a sense of discernment in my life in general.

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 father has nothing to do with my sense of fashion or knowledge of clothing!
My mother taught me good ways to care for my clothing, how to care for different fabrics and remove stains. Though I also use google for this.

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

I like my hair to look a little bit "undone" - I never really style it anyway.
I don't wear much makeup in the first place, but I draw attention to my eyes if I want to look sexy. Sometimes I wear a dark lipstick. But I hate lipstick.
I wear clothes that I know look good on my figure. I like them to be revealing in unexpected ways. If I'm wearing something with an open back I won't pair it with a short skirt, for example.

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?

Comfortable means that your pants don't cut into you when you sit down, that you can't feel the g-string riding up your butt, that your bra fits properly and that you have room to move freely and breathe freely.
Confident means that you take pride in yourself, and don't really need validation from others.

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?

Make sure what you're wearing actually fits you. Make sure you're wearing something you want people to notice in the right way.
Make sure what you're wearing is at least a little bit interesting.

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

Moments where you are talking to another person and you realise you completely understand each other and that you are probably kindred spirits.

34. What do you consider very ugly?

Desperation for attention in group situations, desperation for recognition by others in professional capacities.

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?

Yes. My mother always told me to imagine what I would wear an item of clothing with before buying it. This advice has stuck with me and stopped me from buying things quite often.

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?

My "outer eye" is actually based on small snippets I have taken from what people have told me I look like (in particular, complimentary statements from ex-partners)
I would like to think that the person I appear to be is a little bit mysterious and aloof. I also hope that I appear approachable, however.

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

I often try to vaguely plan my outfit the night before if I have to get up early and be somewhere early. I also try to not wear the same thing over and over again so I am considering that factor. Usually I will start with one item that I want to wear for sure and work around it.

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

To look good, look interesting and a lot of the time look older than I actually am (perennial curse of being old at heart)

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

Dressing is for every day. Dressing up is just heightening the every day. I don't really have any items that I will only wear to "dress up" - it's more the way I style them and use makeup.

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

White pants rolled up, a black t-shirt tucked into those pants. Black leather boots.

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

Me: slightly androgynous clothing, black or white clothing, interesting statement pieces, delicate silver jewellery, structured clothes, sneakers with a dress.

Not me: patterns, colour, too much jewellery, heels, red lipstick.

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

My mother is English and my father is Czech. This has not at all influenced my dress sense. Growing up in middle-class Australia has in the sense that I am influenced by my surroundings and what is available to 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?

When I was younger I dressed quite differently - there was a great determination to blur the lines between men's and women's clothing. I wasn't a tomboy, but it was more about wearing clothes that would hide my feminine figure.

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

Clothing wise I will wear more tailored items in finer fabrics, and makeup wise I will just wear a little more than I usually do.

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

Sometimes I wear navy instead of black... wild.

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

No, I only have to wear black at work. I have played on sports teams in the past with uniforms but I always kind of hated sports.

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?

Sometimes it's comforting in that I don't have to really think about what I put on, but ultimately I find it neither comforting nor restraining.

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?

Probably a long, flowing linen dress in navy blue with some white sneakers (probably Nike Air force one) or Converse.
I feel it encapsulates the way I dress. Attention to detail and fabric but ultimately casual.

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?

Nope. I love being a lady.

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

Given the current climate of trends the 90s would have been interesting... but I was alive then and I'm kind of still living it.
Maybe the 70s.

52. Do you consider yourself photogenic?

No!! I look great in real life but in photos for some reason I always look terrible.

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

You really need to stop eating so much bread.
But your eyes look nice I suppose.

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

It's the idea of the gamine that I've been obsessed with for the last little while. Jane Birkin etc. I even cut my hair to look like her.

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

Probably, though I don't remember.

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

A really tight dress and heels.

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?

I would probably wear the same sorts of things, but would find it more gratifying to be a couple of sizes smaller than what I currently am. Particularly in terms of having a smaller waist and hips.

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

Not intentionally. I have had enough experience by now to know you shouldn't dress for others. The right people will be attracted by your regular self.

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

Make sure you actually feel comfortable and not restricted by what you're wearing.
Don't overdress. Don't overdo makeup.
Wear things you would want people to compliment for the right reasons.

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

Yes, I wear the same perfume every day. I only recently changed fragrance after several years.

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

Make sure they're not too creased so I iron before wearing if necessary. I need to wash my face as well, and moisturise it. I need to brush my hair.

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

Makeup is something that I don't avoid, but just use minimally. I have a few staple items I apply almost every day and that's it.

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?

Not really. I don't really like the "health goth" look/trend but I don't feel I'm expected to really. I'm not interested because it is seems to try too hard.

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

This is a difficult question.
7-8 pairs of pants - mostly black, white or jeans, mostly high waisted. Some patterned or coloured.
More t-shirts and jumpers than I can count. Mostly one colour, mostly cotton/linen, mostly a tiny bit oversized.
8 -9 skirts and dresses - most mid-length to long
About 20 pairs of shoes.
Jewellery - mostly small silver pieces.
Heaps of patterned socks.

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

I don't have one, my favourite fluctuates all the time.
My favourite jewellery is my anchovy ring and my peppercorn necklace from Lucy Folk.

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?

I keep lots of my old swimwear and lots of things I have purchased vintage. I keep them in case one day I decide I want to wear them again.

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?

Definitely. The items I spent a little bit more on but knew I would wear to death all fulfilled that promise.

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?

Not really. Items I have sold or given away were done so for a reason. I lost a denim jacket that I loved and wore everywhere, but that's all.

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

The jeans I wear to work in my studio/do manual labour. They are the perfect weight denim, suitably broken in and scuffed with paint marks. They're the best.

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

Only buy really basic items that are sustainable, good quality and essential.

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

I don't really remember, but probably something from the Australian brand Bassike. I definitely still own and wear everything I own from this brand.

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

No, but I notice as the years go on and I continue to earn money that my idea of what an "acceptable" price to pay for clothing or shoes rises more and more.

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

A truly perfect coat that is the right length, weight and cut.

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

I keep things very neat except I run out of space quite often. The drawer where I keep t-shirts is really squashed and nothing is folded.

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

Yes, for my most recent birthday I was given a couple of pieces of jewellery that I had mentioned a couple of times and didn't expect to receive.

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?

No, I am always considered about my choices of clothing.

77. How and when do you shop for clothes?

I shop online a great deal, but to my favourite shops and for more expensive items I will go into a physical store. I shop online to procrastinate when studying at any time. I shop physically when I have a couple of spare hours.

78. Do you like to smell a certain way?

Yes, I like people to know I have a specific scent.

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

Only in the sense that I work in the arts and would like to continue to do so, so I think how I dress translates this idea whether that is conscious or not.

80. How does money fit into all this?

I don't earn enough money really to sustain the kinds of clothes I am buying, but it means I forgo other things. I do try to curb this but it doesn't always work out.

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

I wear virtually the same make up products and perfume every single day. i wear the same silver rings every day. Apart from this, no.

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

This goes back to a previous answer I gave about being told I 'look like an artist.' Also compliments from people I love or have loved seem to make a big difference in my self-love.

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 don't remember a distinct moment. I just realised the potential of clothes to communicate my personality whilst studying at university and talking to friends about different brands. It was a slow progression.

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

1995. Born and still live in Sydney, Australia.

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

European, upper middle class.

What kind of work do you do?

Artist/arts administration.

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.

Student who works casually, from a family that supports me financially if absolutely necessary.

How do you feel after filling out this survey?

That I've been more honest and decisive than I thought!

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