Read Surveys (By Author)
1. When do you feel at your most attractive?
wearing a loose top and yoga pants on a good hairday
2. Do you notice women on the street? If so, what sort of women do you tend to notice or admire?
interesting color choices
3. What are some things you admire about how other women present themselves?
looking polished and casual
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 realized that my pants were too dark to go with the navy button downs i kept buying. i looked monochromatic -- and not in a good way. Also, that people who look polished look that way because of the effort they put in.
5. What are some shopping rules you wouldn’t necessarily recommend to others but which you follow?
thrift almost all your clothing. hang almost all your clothes in outfits and then from that -- figure out fashion holes -- ie a skirt basic enough that you can wear with all your tops.
6. What are some rules about dressing you follow, but you wouldn't necessarily recommend to others?
Try to limit colors -- i wear primarily gray, blue, and black with a green, coral, red and oatmeal thrown in
7. What is the most transformative conversation you have ever had on the subject of fashion or style?
when i realized that other people looked more put together because they bought more clothes -- mine have on occasion lasted 10 years.
9. Are there any clothing (or related) items that you have in multiple? Why do you think you keep buying this thing?
navy blue button down shirts -- because formal clothing tends to last and is in decent condition at the thrift store.
11. Is there any fashion trend you’ve refused to participate in and why?
ombre -- it's so eyecatching that it will be hard to style when it goes out. Also jumpsuits -- I have a short torso, and that never looks good when the fabric puddles around my middle.
13. Have you stolen, borrowed or adapted any dressing ideas or actual items from friends or family?
Every wedding outfit.
14. Was there a point in your life when your style changed dramatically? What happened?
college -- I was finally out of uniform and I started buying "artsy" clothes -- mostly because they were cheap and colorful
15. Is there anything political about the way you dress?
I don't think so.
16. Please describe your body.
Average height, small torso, curvy, healthy weight, slightly grey hair, happy smile.
17. Please describe your mind.
convoluted and repetitive. Easily distracted
18. Please describe your emotions.
All over the place, but better now. Easy to cheer up but very reactive.
19. What are you wearing on your body and face, and how is your hair done, right at this moment?
glasses, grey vneck, medium wash jeans bare feet, wet hair.
20. In what way is this stuff important, if at all?
It can be beautiful and keep me warm.
21. With whom do you talk about clothes?
Friends sometimes -- really it isn't something we talk about much.
22. How do institutions affect the way you dress?
They don't much -- other than making sure I don't wear clothes with cutouts.
23. Do you think you have taste or style? Which one is more important? What do these words mean to you?
I think so. I like understated, fitted clothes that aren't attention grabbing and slide into the background. I'm trying to get better about wearing beautiful clothing that fits. I felt frumpy recently because I'd changed weight. New clothes that fit helped tremendously.
24. Do you remember the biggest waste of money you ever made on an item of clothing?
I tend to wear clothes out, so even my large impulse purchases get worn. Probably my least rational and most expensive purchase were a pair of high leather boots which I haven't worn that much.
25. Are there any dressing tricks you’ve invented or learned that make you feel like you’re getting away with something?
matching something light with something dark. It's amazing how that helps. Also getting rid of everything that is the correct size but doesn't flatter -- it doesn't fit you now, it wont later.
26. Do you have style in any areas of your life aside from fashion?
I make beautiful black and white drawings.
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?
dressing up for a party -- if I feel pretty I won't be so nervous about going.
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 like natural fibers and simple styles. I also like bright colors, although I seldom wear them. This follows other aspects of my life
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?
No -- I've learned that I need fewer clothes than my mother and I do not buy something, just because it looks good -- I need to have a cause to wear it.
30. What sorts of things do you do, clothing or make-up or hair- wise, to feel sexy or alluring?
Tight fitting clothing ( my husband's fond of my yoga pants). Ironing my shirt -- a rarity. Also wearing clothes that a few shades away from each other in tone. I like single columns of color, like a monochromatic dress.
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?
For comfort, I usually wear flats, and I do my best to wear shoes that fit. I dress for the weather -- I find women who under-dress ridiculous. I think the unstudied careless look attractive, but have realized that it takes more work than simply looking polished. (and polished is more than I usually manage.)
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?
simple, fitted, causual and elegant -- that's what I'm going for at any rate
33. What is really beautiful, for you, in general?
natural fibers cut simply.
34. What do you consider very ugly?
paisly and busy prints.
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?
Usually. I try to buy for my everyday life.
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?
Thankfully I don't think like this.
37. What is your process getting dressed in the morning? What are you considering?
I pick something I feel pretty in. And it's usually the same few items, so I do a lot of laundry
38. What are you trying to achieve when you dress?
to be covered and to like the way I look. Sometimes to be a particular character.
39. What, for you, is the difference between dressing and dressing up?
Usually the mess on the bed. Getting dressed is a far less involved process. It helps to have few options -- it makes getting dressed up far tidier.
40. If you had to wear a “uniform” what would it look like?
an empire waisted top and fitted jeans.
41. What would you say is “you” and what would you say is “not you”?
monochromatic is me, usually, or simple pairings. Complicated prints are not me.
42. What is your cultural background and how has that influenced how you dress?
waspy American - and Australian. Probably years in school uniform have made me more amenable to the concept of a limited clothing palette.
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?
Short skirts, bright colors -- ruffles, peasant skirts. and thin strapped tank tops. Well I hadn't figured out what bra I should wear, and that showing my bra strap isn't a good look. It was a bit like dressing a two year old - I bought what i liked and didn't fuss to much about it matching. I wore a lot of bright colors. I looked like I was going to art school, which I was at the time.
44. What sorts of things do you do, clothing, make-up or hair-wise, to feel professional?
I iron my clothes. I'm working on the casual yet professional look -- it's not my forte.
45. How do you conform to or rebel against the dress expectations at your workplace?
I try to conform. If anything I'm too formal.
46. Do you have a dress code, a school uniform, or a uniform that you wear for an extracurricular activity?
Not any more. I had a school uniform for 11 years.
47. Are there ways in which you conform to or rebel against these uniforms?
I conformed without much fuss.
48. Do you find it comforting or constraining to have a uniform?
I found it comforting.
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 fitted monochromatic dress is the closest to that ideal.
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. Mine's prettier.
51. If there was one country or culture or era that you had to live in, fashion-wise, what would it be?
I really liked the new look, although my torso is too short for it to look good on me.
52. Do you consider yourself photogenic?
When I look at a picture that's ten years old I do -- I'm too critical.
53. When you see yourself in photographs, what do you think?
I look rounder than I feel
54. Are there any figures from culture, past or present, whose style you admire or have drawn from?
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?
High heels, a short skirt and no coat on a cold day.
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?
The same clothes. I like my body for the most part. I wish i had a smaller stomach, and at least when it came time to buy clothes, smaller boobs would be helpful (although I like mine)
58. Is there anyone that you are trying to attract or repel when you dress?
I mostly dress for myself, but it's always nice when my husband notices.
59. Are there any dressing rules you’d want to convey to other women?
Fewer clothes makes it easier to get dressed.
60. What do you think of perfume? Do you wear it?
I don't. And my husband's allergic.
61. What are some things you need to do to your body or clothes in order to feel presentable?
62. How does makeup fit into all this for you?
I'm slowly starting to feel obligated to wear makeup, but it's not something I enjoy.
64. Can you describe in a basic way what you own, clothing and jewelry-wise?
Lots of dangley earrings --although they all fit in one box. Half a closet full of clothes -- 2 leggings, 2 jeans, 2 jersey dresses, some tshirts and a few wool long sleeves.
65. What is your favorite piece of clothing or jewelry that you own?
An empire waisted black and white stripe top and black leggings.
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?
A patterned leaf dress that I keep for weddings. I don't particularly like it, but I can keep wearing it, and it looks decent. I have so few weddings so it doesn't make sense to keep buying new things to wear.
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?
Natural fiber shirts.-- can't beat a silk top for 5 dollars at goodwill. I wore it to weddings, so it was a win.
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?
A tiered wrap skirt with tiny brown abstracted flower pattern on it. I wore it so much that I used to sit in it and repair it while still wearing it. It used to be halfway down my calf, and then I grew and it was knee length. It had worn out long before I got rid of it. I absolutely loved it.
69. If you had to throw out all your clothes but keep one thing, what would you keep?
My blue dress - because I would be fully dressed=)
70. Building up your wardrobe from nothing, what would you do differently this time?
Try to buy more light colored clothing.
71. What’s the first “investment” item you bought? Do you still own or wear it?
A wrap silk skirt for 90 dollars. I wore it all the time this summer.
72. Was there ever an important or paradigm-shifting purchase in your life?
The first time I bought clothes at a thrift store and realized how nice the clothing was -- and how much less expensive.
73. What item of clothing are you still (or have you forever been) on the hunt for?
A light colored shirt that fits at the shoulders and the bust.
74. What are your closet and drawers like? Do you keep things neat, etc?
Not really. I'd like to have more shelves. I have a set of plastic drawers that I dislike.
75. Were you ever given a present of clothing or jewelry that especially touched you?
A jade heart from someone who had little.
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 had a linen dress shirt from goodwill that I loved so much that I invisibly repaired. I wore it all summer.
77. How and when do you shop for clothes?
Goodwill and thriftstores all the way baby=)
78. Do you like to smell a certain way?
I prefer not to smell.
79. How does how you dress play into your ambitions for yourself?
I try to dress for the person I want to be.
80. How does money fit into all this?
I've always had enough to not have to be super careful but I have expensive tastes so I'm careful to shop second hand because I can't find natural fibers for an inexpensive price point otherwise.
81. Is there an article of clothing, a piece of make-up, or an accessory that you carry with you or wear every day?
82. Did anyone ever say anything to you that made you see yourself differently, on a physical and especially sartorial level?
Someone once mentioned that I always looked put together -- and I was surprised. It wasn't how I saw myself, although I like nice clothing so I can skimp on makeup.
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?
When I realized that other girls were wearing pants as part of the school uniform. But I liked dresses so much that I couldn't really conceptualize wearing pants anyway.
What’s your birth date? Where were you born and where do you live now?
I was born in 1988 in Massachusetts. I live in Colorado now.
Say anything you like about your cultural/ethnic/economic background.
What kind of work do you do?
I do marketing
Are you single, married, do you have kids, etc.?
I'm married, with no kids yet.
Please say anything you like about yourself that might put this survey into some sort of context.
This is out of character for me.
How do you feel after filling out this survey?
Better about myself, strangely.