June 2nd, 2016 at 2:00am

Ciao bella! My name is Mia Volpe and I am a senior public relations major with a dance minor at the Illinois State University (emphasis on the “the”). When I am not sobbing over the idea of being a senior in college, you can find me violently rooting for the Blackhawks on TV, dancing my heart out in the studio or working my little tooshie off at my university’s local boutique, Apricot Lane.

When it came down to getting my first job, I didn’t choose retail, retail choose me and made me work every Saturday closing shift that summer. I started out in the men’s clothing section at Nordstrom in Oakbrook, Illinois. It was there that I fell head over heels with the environment, my co-workers and the idea of being active in the fashion world. Each day at work, I would venture upstairs to the MAC counter and gaze at the vibrant lipsticks and shadows. On days I was feeling particularly adventurous, I would sneak up to the Free People section to touch the beautiful fabrics and dream of twirling in a field in their clothing. Since I was a girl, I have always had Chanel taste with a Kohl’s-style budget, but somehow, I manage to obtain some of the finer things.

When it comes down to my style, I find that my personality and style have a similar relationship: they are both larger than life and all over the place. I feel as if I jump in a time machine every time I assemble a new outfit. Some days I travel to the 90’s, where I sport a vintage pair of patterned pants, converse and a cropped muscle tank. Other days, I find myself stuck in the ’70s with a pair of platform heels and bell-sleeve dresses. However, I always have a cross hanging around my neck and a plethora of Alex and Ani bracelets dangling from my wrists. I believe that it’s not necessary to stick to one particular style. If one day you’re feeling a hot pink sweetheart dress and prom curls, then rock it. If another day you’re dressed head-to-toe in black then, honey, work it.

I adore being a Key Holder at Apricot Lane in Normal, Illinois and I feel that my style has developed tremendously since working there. I have big dreams of being in the spotlight, wherever that may be, and I know that you’ve got to look damn good if you want to make it there. I am beyond grateful to be a Style Guru for CollegeFashionista for this summer. I hope that I will be able to further develop my own style and give readers a little taste of what it’s like living in Mia World. Buckle up, Fashionistas. You’re in for a interesting ride.