FASHIONISTA SPOTLIGHT: Gina Bonitatis

Fashionista Spotlight

I had a Bill Cunningham moment in Memorial Hall last week. This reference is a tribute to the photographer’s term “stunner,” used only to describe extraordinary style discoveries. It happens as you’re walking down the street — or in my case, sitting in class — and you’re hit with a fashion statement that compels you to raise your camera and snap photos uncontrollably.

Tuesday in FASH355 I was waiting for class to begin (or end, really) and in walks the “stunner” in question. This Fashionista arrived in pants packing a punch, perfectly styled from head to toe. Ladies like her make my job easy.
All day I had been walking with my point-and-shoot in my tote bag, eyeing maxi dresses and metallic sandals, noting great style but waiting for something to jump out. Then, there it was — the trend I’ve been dying to try but somehow missed thus far. This pajama-inspired palazzo pant in a sheer chiffon is a bold adaptation of the flowing summer maxi skirt, and the classic polka-dots make it so very loveable.

Name: Gina Bonitatis

Major: Fashion Merchandising

Year: Sophomore

CollegeFashionista: How would you describe your personal style?

Gina Bonitatis: I would describe my personal style as a mix between classic and trendy and really girly. I like to incorporate trends into my outfits (like the palazzo pants I was wearing) but also incorporate other aspects of my style like polka dots-which are my favorite pattern!

CF: What did you miss most about the warm weather?

GB: I missed high-waist shorts the most, open knits and rompers! I also really missed being tan without having to use a tanning bed.

CF: Who or what influences your style most?

GB: Olivia Palermo influences my style a lot. Sometimes I'll try to recreate her outfits that she wears because I love her style so much. I also like mixing Olivia's styles with Rumi Neely to keep things more casual. Olivia Palermo is definitely the number one influence on my style though, I'd love to have her closet for a day.

CF: What’s your best tip for style on a budget?

GB: I think thrift stores are a great place to look for items when you're on a budget. A lot of my friends went out and spend $60+ on denim or chambray button-downs, but I found three or four really great ones at a local thrift store for less than $5 each. I also love how its almost guaranteed that no one will have the same piece as you! It definitely takes practice but if you're patient enough and really willing to search you can find trendy clothes.

CF: What drew you to the fashion industry, and how will it fit into your future?

GB: The constant change and the way that designers are always thinking up new styles. I always think that nothing new can be done but the industry finds a way to put a twist on older styles. I also just love getting ready in the morning and putting together new outfits which has inspired me to pursue a career as a fashion buyer. I'd like to be the person behind stocking stores and basically selecting what you will be shopping from!

How To: These pants are an instant statement piece and make the first impact. Try them in a black-and-white print like this Fashionista did, or go for a bold color. But why stop there? This Fashionista took the statement idea further and incorporated a fabulous metal collar necklace and neon ballet flats to add a pop of color (I’m still obsessed with these statement flats from Urban Outfitters). With loud pants keep the top simple. A neutral or solid silk tank top is a must-have for spring, as it is a true go-with-anything piece. This look is such a versatile treat; wear it to work, to class or to dinner and drinks.

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