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Abby Swain

1. When do you feel at your most attractive?

When I'm wearing an outfit I love (an outfit that is really unique and strong) and my makeup is done.

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

Definitely! I notice women who are well dressed, or who dress differently than most people, especially when it's unconventional. For example, I was obsessed with this woman I saw for .2 seconds that I passed on the sidewalk yesterday with pink eyebrows. I also admire women who just casually walk around smiling because I think it's really nice they're happy.

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

I admire when women defend their beliefs. I admire when women don't try to fit into a conventional image.

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'm not sure if it was a "click," but when I saw Julia Cummings from my favorite band Sunflower Bean cut her hair to a pixie it made me realize that there was nothing stopping me from cutting my hair, too, if I wanted.

But a definite click was when I started looking up to a family friend of ours who is a stylist in LA. I was in high school, she was in her early twenties, and she inspired me to be as unique and expressive as I want in my clothing.

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

Shop at chains as little as possible. Avoid buying what everyone else is.

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

Try everyday to make an ensemble; don't just throw things on.

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

I can't name a specific conversation, but any time I got to talk to my friend/mentor who is a stylist in LA. She really encouraged me to be what I want and let what I wear be a reflection of that.

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

I hate to half-ass anything. I like to do everything I do well (by my standards, which are pretty high) and when I don't, I get very upset.

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

I don't buy anything in multiples; I like everything in my closet to be unique and have a unique purpose for being there.

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

I gave my best friend a ring with our two birthstones in it for her birthday one year and I thought that was really nice. But she never wears it. I painted a denim jacket for my mom last Christmas and she loved it.

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

I won't put fishnets under my high-waisted torn jeans because I think that's too last-year.

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

My body is nothing like my mothers. She is petite and svelte and I am really tall and more curvy. Our styles are completely different as well, although we admire each other's style.

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

I steal ideas from my roommate/best friend all the time: what silhouettes to wear, headwear, where to get inspiration from, etc.

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

In high school when I started talking to my stylist friend/mentor in LA and last summer when I got into punk music.

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

I like to paint on/distress my own clothes and I have a lot of ideas for political stances/statements to put on a t-shirt but I never do them.

16. Please describe your body.

Tall, I'm 5'11.'' Curvy, but more in an hourglass way than a pear-shaped way. Not petite in the slightest but still thin? It's in a weird spot between just being big in general but also thinner proportionally.

17. Please describe your mind.

It's creative, it's hard working to a fault, it's always busy.

18. Please describe your emotions.

They're practically nonexistent. I'm an Aquarius.

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

I'm wearing a pink turtleneck I got at the thrift store, a bra that is really tight because it's trying to hold my unfortunately large breasts up, highwaisted jeans from American Apparel, sweaty socks, and a hat from the band the 1975 to hide my greasy hair. I just have eyebrow stuff and mascara on.

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

It's really not, although I do think my clothes are a reflection of who I am. It's not the most important reflection of who I am, but it's still one nonetheless.

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

February 1997, Cincinnati OH.

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

I like that I try to be uniquely me in my dressing; I don't care what other people are wearing.

How do you feel after filling out this survey?

Like me, and proud to be me.

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