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sea mags 4

1. When do you feel at your most attractive?

when i see myself naked in the mirror and admire my curves and shape!

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

not this year (pandemic)

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

I'm impressed and frankly mystified by how polished some people always manage to look. Their hair is always done, their nails look fresh, their clothes are stylish. How much work does that take?

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 recently had a haircut by someone specializing in curly hair. She gave me some pointers about how to embrace my wavy hair texture. As I learned more about textured haircare, I realized the default in haircare is for straight (white people) hair. I hate that racially biased beauty norms pushed me into a mold for 30 years, without me even realizing it. I love my wavy texture! It's insane to me that I would get haircuts that piled on products that had straightening effects, a blowout, and then recurled my hair. It does that on it's own if treated correctly!

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

I only buy things that fit and that make sense in my closet. I think it's a good rule.

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

I am very practical in what I wear. It works for me but practicality isn't always the right defining factor.

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

I'd say a positive, transformative, and unusual experience.

For context, I had gone up a few sizes into 'plus' sizing. I had had a lot of pretty devastating experiences at stores. Like, thrifting at my local goodwill, there was almost nothing about a size L. I tried using a personal shopper at Nordstrom and left in tears. I was at a consignment store checking out a form fitting dress and the shop assistant said, oh at that size you should wear something more flowing. I had a lot of body shame.

So after all this, I still need stuff to wear in my new size. I went to the Universal Standard showroom and left in tears - but in a good way. Every single thing in that showroom came in sizing that fit me. The shop assistant was SO nice and kind and SO positive about how I looked. I felt so seen and so included and so catered to. It was honestly life changing for me at that time. It made me feel like I could find clothes for myself that were nice, and that fit, and that made me feel good, after a long time of not really trying.

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

I try to be organized, not have excessive consumption, get stuff secondhand, save over spend, etc.

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

I recently bought a two pairs of my favorite cut of Levi's. I like the Rib Cage Straight Ankle and it's hard to get in a Size 16, so I bought a few.

I also bought a few of my favorite ORI tshirts and will buy more.

I also have bought multiples of camis, undies, and bike shorts from Thunderpants, because they are THE BEST and so Comfortable for sleeping.

Those two items are the basis of my daily uniform. They're core closet items.

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

Ruffles. I don't like excess fabric on my body.

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

She has a bad relationship with her body and struggles to take care of herself. I try really hard to do the opposite.

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


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

Handmade bathrobe (made by me). It's grey french terry and like getting wrapped in a sweatshirt hug.

34. What do you consider very ugly?

Fast fashion.

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. I buy for my real life not for my fantasy life.

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

Reality TV star or instagram influencer

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

No, it gives me headaches.

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

I never had a mom or sister who taught me how to do makeup, so I haven't worn it much and am learning from zero. During quarantine I got into lipsticks, as my first foray. I just take it in baby steps. I don't really like a lot of makeup anyway, I'd rather focus on skincare.

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

-Lots of wool socks from farm to feet and basic athletic socks
-A handful of panache and fantasie bras; I'm a difficult size so I keep a pretty minimal bra wardrobe
-Undies from TomboyX, Thunderpants, and cheapies from target for my periods
-Two sets of workout leggings, bike shorts, and athletic tops
-A zip up hoodie and two homemade pullover sweatershirts
-Lots of cotton tanks for sleeping
-Two pairs of Levi Rib Cage Straight Ankle Jeans
-Two pairs of Universal Standard Reine Jeans (they are a little too big in the waist, need to size down)
-Two pairs of Old Navy linen blend pants (I don't like them very much, the quality isn't good)
-One pair of tencel old navy shorts
-A drawer full of secondhand cashmere and wool sweaters and cardigans, many from Eileen Fisher Renew
-Several knit pencil skirts, most wool knits from EFR
-Four pair of sweatpants / joggers
-3 Tees from Ori Everyday
-A handful of basic Univeral Standard Tees
-Two US dresses
-Several handmade and thrifted fun jackets
-Two pairs of birkenstock arizonas
-Two pairs of New Balance Walking Shoes
-Two pairs of men's oxfords
-Two pairs of high heel wedges
-One black leather sneaker
-One pair of wood clogs
-One red rain coat
-One half length black puffer jacket
-One Baggu backpack (LOVE IT!)
-One red crossover leather satchel
-Assorted other scarves and bags
-One pair of Smith Sunglasses
-Assorted jewelry, most gifted from my mom. I rarely wear jewelry, but the stuff I like the most is pieces that are handmade and minimalist.

The list is not everything, but it's pretty comprehensive.

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

That's hard. I love most of my clothes, a lot. I don't hang on to stuff that I don't really enjoy and love unless it's a necessary placeholder until I find the right version of that item.

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 have a few vintage coats and other pieces I thrifted that no longer fit. The quality and construction on them is so interesting I keep them around as a reference (I sew my own clothes). One jacket in particular has a lot of very special memories relating to my relationship, so I keep that for sentimental reasons.

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?

I learned in the past few years to actually buy what I need.

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?

All the time. I changed sizes pretty dramatically, and at my smaller size, I had a lot of very cool, interesting clothes that I thrifted that were just beautiful and fun and made me feel good. And as I got bigger, they stopped fitting and I started getting rid of them. I have a lot of grief around that. It was traumatic to lose that source of pleasure and it's taken a long time to slowly rebuild pleasure and joy into clothing.

I also have pieces I gave away that I wish I still had because I learned how to resell my clothes and had some really, really nice stuff.

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

I'd keep a beautiful silk scarf my partner bought me.

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

I have basically done that over the past few years and I think it's smart to go slow, buy less but good stuff that will last, and take care of items.

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

Shorts that don't ride up in the thighs.

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 bought a polyester knit polka dot jumpsuit second hand online. I wore it once and wasn't so sure I liked it. But I put it on again recently and realized it looked AWESOME on me and it was SUPER comfortable in warmer weather.

77. How and when do you shop for clothes?

Online. 1-2 pieces per month.

80. How does money fit into all this?

I recently learned how to sell my clothes online, so I've made a few hundred dollars from that, and use it to buy new stuff. Then I try to buy stuff I know has resale value. It means I am more willing to take risks because I know I can recoup my costs if it doesn't work out.

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