Growing up, I was not always expressive about my sense of style. I felt that expressing myself was excessive or what would be better known nowadays as “too extra.” In my mind, I had an idea of outfits I loved, but always wore what I thought was safe. The journey of radiating myself through fashion did not come all at once, but as my life carried on.
As I learned more about myself and my style, I became more comfortable with what I wanted to wear. When I was younger, I was more introverted, and so, my style was more conservative, but I always itched to get out of my comfort zone. Exteriors do not mean everything, but being myself through fashion allowed myself to have self appreciation.
Along the way, I started to recognize what worked best with my body shape, and what was not only comfortable but stylish to me. Eventually, what I wore became my own skin. I want to share with you three life events which allowed myself to get outside of my comfort zone.
The first would be entering college. Starting college, you are faced with numerous independent decisions and freedom. Here I allowed myself to experiment with what suited myself and what made me happy. The idea of a clean slate helped me be comfortable with trying out different styles.
The second is being a business student. As a business major, I am constantly learning about dressing professionally in the career world. I realized what defined professionalism was not looking good, but being respectful through dressing appropriately. Here I got the opportunity to expand my style in terms of a more mature look (and maybe even an excuse to dress up).
The third, and my favorite, would be traveling. Having had the chance to study abroad in South Korea, I was able to experience a foreign environment which had its own unique fashion style than one I was used to. Being abroad greatly molded the way I thought about fashion. There were students from all over the world studying abroad with different trends, which intrigued me. My style was my own and represented where I came from. Here I blended my personal style with the fashion exposed around me. A prime example of what fashion can do. Fashion could also radiate your past, present, and who you want to be in the future.
Here is an example of an outfit which radiates me. My main piece, the sheer kimono was bought in Japan and is perfect for the weather in Hawaii—allowing myself to cover up but still feel breathable. Underneath, I wear a basic cami tank top and distressed high-waisted shorts, casual and perfect for a hot summer day. My accessories, the oversize sunglasses and chunky black platforms, were bought in Korea which added an extra dash to my overall outfit.
What inspires your style? We’d love to hear from you, and be sure to tag @cfashionista!