STYLE GURU BIO: Ashley Kulik

I always knew since the day I insisted on wearing my plaid raincoat, bright red boots and carrying my clear umbrella, even when it wasn’t raining out, that I was not going to follow the mold. I was always trying to wear something unique. There were even a few weeks when I was a little kid that I wore a different tutu to school every day.

As I grew up, I never pored over the fashion magazines or tried to copy every move they made. I don’t think that is the true meaning of fashion. I would never call myself a fashion expert. And I don’t always have time to watch every fashion show or buy the new “it” item. Now, I am a college student at Quinnipiac University still creating a unique style, and I can usually be found sketching on pretty much anything I can get my hands onto. Which, according to my teachers, isn’t how you are supposed to hand in important papers. Usually I cannot help it; you have no restrictions when you draw. It is a blank canvas waiting to be filled by anything your mind can think up. This creativity is what I thrive on.

To me, the purpose of fashion is to create your own look. It isn’t about copying what everyone else is doing; it is about drawing inspiration from around you and creating a look that portrays who you are or want to be. I would say my personal style is based on what ever is inspiring me at the moment. One day I might play off a schoolgirl look, another boho chic. Each outfit you put together tells a little bit more about yourself and how you want to be viewed. Along with describing your individuality, your style gives you the ability to strengthen your look and gain confidence—all by choosing what you wear. Throw on something as basic as an LBD and nude pumps, and you have a totally different person then the jeans and T-shirt girl you see at school.

When I have chosen or put together a great look, it gives me confidence. I feel most powerful when I know I look good. The feeling I get isn’t even about the beauty aspect. It is more about feeling a sense of accomplishment. I feel proud of what I have created, and I feel confident showing it off to others. What I want most is to become an inspiration to others—someone who is accessible and who people can draw realistic ideas from. Fashion is a form of art that, more often than not, people forget about. It is something that we are always immersed in and is one of the easiest forms to get involved in. Just like art, fashion is not always going to turn out right. Sometimes an outfit will fail and that is okay. Remember to trust your instinct, try something new and don’t be afraid to break the mold.