fashion

The Year of the Double G

By Donatella Mancinone

Walking around the busy city streets of Boston, there is a lot of scenery for the eyes to take in, especially for a new resident like myself. I look up; the beautiful lights are hugging the trees on Newbury Street. I look down; my brand new winter boots are stomping across the unexplored ground beneath me. Lastly, I find my eyes glancing straight ahead at the crowd coming towards me. Wrapped around their waists, I see the infamous Double G. Is it true? Are they all wearing… Gucci?!

Image courtesy of Architectural Digest

Image courtesy of Architectural Digest

It seems like everywhere you look, someone is wearing a Gucci belt, Ace trainers, the GG Marmont shoulder bag. This simple ‘slap the logo on a basic item’ mentality is leading Gucci to a major comeback. It is unorthodox to have customers pay nearly $500 for a basic white t-shirt with the word “GUCCI” written on it, but they are still being sold at a rapid pace. To fully grasp the situation at hand, I decided to take a trip to the Gucci store in Copley Place. Walking around the store it is clear that creative director Alessandro Michele has worked hard to change the face of this brand. With vibrant colors and unconventional looks, each display was rather simple so as to not take away from the piece of art it was holding. I strode through the entrance and was staggered by the excessive use of the Gucci logo. Then it hit me; Gucci is not the only brand doing this. I looked down at the woman next to me — were those Fila sneakers?

The relatively large logo on the front of the belt perfectly follows along with the ‘90s fashion. The ‘90s were full of graphic t-shirts, stonewashed jeans, Doc Martens, high top sneakers, tiny backpacks, cat eye sunglasses, fanny packs, scrunchies and white sneakers, to name a few. Evidently, ‘90s fashion is illuminating in the late 2010’s. Today, designer brands are catching on to this ‘’90s is the new black’ attitude. It is difficult to miss all of these fashion trends when walking down Newbury Street, but yet again the Gucci belt dominates the fashion industry for herds of urban fashionistas. But why?

As the use of the logo is making a comeback in fashion with brands such as Gucci, Calvin Klein, Levi’s, and Tommy Hilfiger, there is no question that the Gucci belt has fueled its brand’s comeback. According to Business Insider, in April of 2018, “Gucci’s parent company Kering SA reported a 48.7 percent jump in same-store sales during the first quarter of 2018.” The basic belt with a width of 1.5” runs for $450, and $350 for a width of 0.8”. Essentially, this statement accessory can be worn with jeans from Walmart and still appear trendy.

Photo courtesy of Who What Wear

Photo courtesy of Who What Wear

A majority, if not all, millennials and teens appear on social media, but this isn’t news to anyone. Running a so-called ‘successful’ social media page is all about the aesthetic. Today, many are turning to Instagram to create an entire page of someone’s identity, or at least what they want outsiders to think of them. Essentially, social media allows someone to create an image of themself. Because it is a relatively “Instagram-able” article of clothing, the Gucci belt’s appearance on posts demands recognition. In addition to its unique and simple design, there is an unbelievable list of icons who have been spotted sporting this hip accessory, such as Jennifer Aniston, Chrissy Teigen, Kendall Jenner, and Kourtney Kardashian.

With this statement accessory comes status. The brass finished logo is large and essentially begging to be seen, which is quite obvious on my walk in the city; I notice all of the Express sweaters tucked into this lavish logo. I am now coming to the end of my walk on Newbury street, lights glimmering, boots still clunking away. I feel a sense of breaking from the ordinary; I feel different, free. I now look down onto myself, and what is that I see? I’ll give you one hint, it is not the Double G.

Binaries on the Runway

By Kathy Villa

The fashion and modeling industries have long been places of exclusivity, elitism and the seemingly unfaltering aesthetic of the thin white person. Until recently, the industry has had little to no diversity, particularly lacking in queer or LGBT representation. Today, it appears the industry has begun to embrace a multitude of gender identities as we see a revival of androgynous and genderqueer models — but how extensive is this inclusivity, and how are the models in question affected by it?

Photo courtesy of @raindovemodel on Instagram

Photo courtesy of @raindovemodel on Instagram

In fashion, the term “androgyny” is used to describe an aesthetic that “combines both masculine and feminine characteristics” according to Teen Vogue. It is often used loosely, some people using it to describe their gender, with others using it as a descriptor of style. This is where models such as Rain Dove (@raindovemodel) come into play. Standing at 6’2” with a fierce, masculine expression, their androgynous physicality swiftly brought them popularity in 2014. Born female, Rain Dove prefers gender neutral pronouns, but is accepting of every pronoun. Because agencies only seemed to be interested in them for men’s wear campaigns, they ended up pursuing different interests.

That being said, more people are coming to understand the fluidity of gender and clothing, yet high end designers have a long way to go when it comes to inclusivity.

Thanks to those in Hollywood who identify outside of the gender binary the fashion industry is desperate to maintain, the entire industry has shifted towards bigger and better things. Caitlyn Jenner’s public transition was widely celebrated across the internet, and contributed to the LGBT community’s up and coming era of social acceptance and celebration. Genderqueer and non-binary stars like Ruby Rose and Amandla Stenberg have contributed to queer visibility in the entertainment industry. Jaden Smith put everyone in awe when his Louis Vuitton Womenswear campaign in 2016 depicted him in a skirt, and Young Thug broke boundaries when he chose to wear a billowing purple gown for the cover art of his 2016 album No, My name is Jeffery.

But what about the runways of major fashion houses? Despite the increasing number of gender-nonconforming and transgender models being hired by higher end designers, non-binary individuals continue to be used in binary forms. Enter Oslo Grace, the 21-year-old trans non-binary model ruffling everyone’s feathers in the fashion industry. Based in New York, Grace had appeared on plenty of catwalks in the fashion industry, but made their first popular appearance at Jeremy Scott’s Moschino show in January of 2018, closing it alongside Rupaul’s Drag Race winner Violet Chachki in Milan. Impossible to miss, they garnered the attention of Alessandro Michele, who then tasked them with carrying the signature baby dragon for Gucci’s Spring/Summer 2018 fashion week.

Photo Courtesy of Vogue

Photo Courtesy of Vogue

Photo Courtesy of W Magazine

Photo Courtesy of W Magazine

Under their agency, Grace appears under both menswear and womenswear boards, and continues to make appearances for other big name fashion companies. More recently, they were deemed the highlight of Kenzo’s Fall/Winter 2019–2020 show striking multiple looks in one show. In only four minutes, the model transitioned from a compelling pink suit with side-swept bangs to a lavender eye look paired with a fringe-laden pink dress to end the show. When asked about their journey through modeling and why they choose to appear in both mens and womens wear, Grace told Refinery29 “I usually present very binary on the runway because runways aren’t usually nonbinary.” While they continue to work within the traditional limitations of runway culture, they are pushing the boundaries of what it means to be a model by being themselves. Grace is clearly on their way to becoming one of the fashion industry’s hidden gems, in more ways than one. More importantly, they are testing the limits and proving it’s time the fashion industry stopped thinking of fashion as a matter of strictly male or female altogether.

Week In Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Sustainable Fashion: What You Can Do, Too

Written and modeled by Emily Perez

Did you know that the fashion industry is responsible for up to 10 percent of global CO2 emissions, 20 percent of the world’s industrial wastewater, 24 percent of insecticides, and 11 percent of pesticides use? It’s crazy to think that the fast-fashion clothes we love could be so harmful to our environment. As well as the harm of fast fashion on the environment, many textile workers are severely underpaid and subjected to horrible conditions. While there continues to be many unsustainable textile practices around the world, the good news is there are designers who are looking to make a difference.

Two of the most inspiring sustainable designers of our time are Stella McCartney and the up and coming Belgian designer Bruno Pieters. Pieters is known for his exceptional, 100 percent transparent company. He decided to create this collection, Honest by, after traveling to India to study the textile practices there for two years. Pieters explains how “Details of each supplier are diligently detailed, including items like the number of employees and how long it took to cut and to iron the garment”. This transparency is reflected in the prices but this is a good price to pay for something that is ethically made.

Another very notable sustainable fashion designer is Stella McCartney. What McCartney is most famous for is advocating against cruelty to animals. She has created a very successful brand without using any fur or leather. McCartney even dedicated a whole section of her website to her mission for sustainability and her respect for people, animals, nature, and circular solutions.

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Not only does Stella have her own brand, she often collaborates with Adidas. Adidas features several contemporary designs that are popular on college campuses. Examples of these are the Sam Smith Stella McCartney sneakers and, featured in the photo to the right, the Stella McCartney Adidas wind jacket. She was a partner of the Kering conglomerate, who worked with the Center for Sustainable Fashion. The Center for Sustainable Fashion is a research facility in the London College of Fashion. Additionally, after becoming independent from the Kering conglomerate after 17 years, she still releases an annual Environmental Profits and Loss Report, which publicizes the impact her business has on the environment.

So why shop sustainable? Even though you might have to save up to spend more on certain pieces of clothing, you’d be getting clothes that are much higher quality and that you can use for many years to come. Additionally, you’d be helping the environment, saving animals, and supporting human rights.

Furthermore, there are some stores around Boston and online that also support the quest for sustainability. These stores include Reformation, Everlane, and FjällRäven. You can find Reformation and FjällRäven right on Newbury Street and Everlane can be found online. Everlane has a particularly unique website that even shows you each of the factories where their clothes are made and shows you pictures of the factories.

So what can you do?

  1. As Bruno Pieters says, “ask questions”! Pieters, who worked a number of years at Hugo Boss, says how companies really do take customer needs into account. If you start asking stores where their products are made or what they are made out of, this will start to make them more aware.

  2. Shop less, and for more quality items that will last you a longer time.

  3. Buy from sustainable stores and designers.

Week In Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue Editorial Board

Week In Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

How Old is Fashion's Newest New

By Julie Lombardi
Photography by Calem Robertson
Modeled by Bridget McDonald, Julia Buckner, Kaela Anderson and Isabella Spigel

This article has been adapted for the web from our Flux Issue.

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Seasonal fashions are like karma—what goes around comes around. It’s safe to say that you should stop throwing your “out-of-style” clothes away because you never know when an outdated item may reappear at New York Fashion Week. Fashion, an ever-evolving industry, can only remain so innovative before designers look to previous decades and collections for inspiration. The word “new” in fashion refers to the revival of an item or trend rather than an original unveiling. Iconic 80s and 90s trends are resurrected using more sleek and modern silhouettes, fabrics, and textures. These trends are cycled through each season faster and faster as we absorb newer trends more and more rapidly. Thanks to innovative technology and social media, fashion occurs and recurs, and we do our best to keep up.

This past NYFW saw reappearances of trends that were established decades ago, from bright neon colors, fringe, and classic silhouettes from the 1980s and 1990s. Anna Wintour commented that brands incorporated a sense of optimism and bright neon colors as a way to detract from the barrage of dark news that surrounds our current period (Anna Wintour, Vogue). Bright neons found their origins, however, in the 1980s pop scene. Think: Madonna, Like a Virgin. Bright colors, especially marigold yellow, were shown by brands such as Prabal Gurung, Brandon Maxwell and many more this season.

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Brands such as Versace and Ralph Lauren reached milestone events, such as the 20th anniversary of Gianni Versace’s death and the 50th anniversary of Ralph Lauren’s designing career. These milestones are inspiring the respective designers to look to their brands’ immeasurable pasts and incorporate their trademark designs into their newest collections. In the case of Versace, that means bringing back legendary baroque prints and classic early 90s silhouettes such as shoulder pads, miniskirts, and high-waisted trousers. or With Ralph Lauren, that means reviving earth-toned plaids, oversized jackets, and chunky sweaters that originate from the late 80s and early 90s, a time period so many other designers seem to borrow inspiration from.

Contemporary streetwear also seems to be influenced by past decades, as runway trends make their way into real life. The reintroduction of peasant blouses by niche brands such as Orseund Iris, I.AM.GIA and The Reformation is reminiscent of the 70s yet made more modern with updated and more flattering silhouettes. One of the most popular streetwear trends being revived is the “dad sneaker” by brands such as Balenciaga, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton. These oversized and eye-catching sneakers are broken in by celebrities and fashion bloggers alike and are the source of some fashion controversy; are they ultimately worth the hype and expensive price tag? Whatever the case, the fashion community as a whole seems to have re-embraced this trend. Also borrowing from the 90s “dad” aesthetic is the reemergence of fanny packs that are reproduced by iconic brands such as Gucci, Chanel, Louis Vuitton and so many more. The fanny pack trend is essentially the result of combining fashion with practicality. Making a more subtle comeback has been the 80s and 90s power suit, sported by influential names such as Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid and Rihanna. Powersuits have been updated from the 80s by reimagining the silhouettes and giving them a more deconstructed vibe by pairing with more casual pieces like t-shirts and sneakers.

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Style revivals are incorporated into fashion by designers during fashion month and by magazine writers and editors. From there, celebrities and fashion bloggers incorporate revival trends into their own wardrobe, adding a personal touch to a bigger trend. Because of modern technology and social media, throwback trends are circulated into the mass market very quickly and made available for the everyday consumer. The very nature of the fashion industry—borrowing from the past and making it current—is cyclical. In each decade you can trace inspirations to an earlier decade, whether it be 90s trends that came from the 70s or 70s trends that came from the 20s. Think back on the iconic thin brows and dramatic eye makeup sported in the 1920s that were made popular again in the 70s. We can expect the industry to carry on this way, always inventing new twists on old pieces, because old is the new new.

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks, Halloween Edition

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Boston En Vogue Showcases Eclectic Fashion Worth Worshipping

By Phil Zminda, Editor-in-Chief
Photography by Riley Robinson

In the awe-inspiring Emmanuel Episcopal Church of Boston on Newbury Street, the 2018 Boston En Vogue fashion show of extravagant scale demonstrated the eclectic skill and style of the show’s international designers.

The space was full to the brim with peacocking fashion aficionados, eager to see the six designers' collections as brought to life by an extensive team of models, hair and makeup artists from the Boston area. Featuring the work of Conrad Lamour, Christina Ter’esa, Majesty 22, Debbie Nghiem, Lavish Living, and Sylvie Dahl, the show wrapped up Boston Fashion Week in style.

Check out our favorite looks below.

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Familial Fashion

By Soja Moore
Photographed by Jacob Chvatal

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While style changes from generation to generation, how we’ve adapted our style from past eras and from our family is the most surprising and popular trend yet. Many people receive their older brother or sister’s hand-me-downs, and that has unconsciously shaped their current senses of style. As we follow the aesthetic journey of adolescent style, we see modifications of trendy fashion coming from brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, and sometimes even grandparents. It’s fascinating to follow the personal journey of how siblings have adapted their style in an effort to bring back the old into the new generation.

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Oh Brother

One of the most prominent trends in current men’s fashion is overalls. Popular brands such as ASOS, Urban Outfitters, and PacSun have recently been producing spin-offs of the classic overalls. This trend can come in blue denim, black denim, patterned, ripped, “short-eralls”, and many other different adaptations. When someone first thinks of overalls, one might think of what their grandfather wears.  However, they have become quite notable in the current fashion community.

Another popular trend in the men’s fashion community is the  vintage tee. Most people own vintage tees, and even if they do not, their parents definitely do. It has become popular to steal your parents old clothes and use them to develop your own style, while still instilling that piece of familial pride. With this trend,when your friends ask you where you got your shirt you can say “Oh yeah, it was my dad’s.” Many of these tees have obscure meanings or sayings, old fraternity or sorority chapters, or old concert graphics. Other familial hand-me-downs include varsity jackets, vintage suits and the occasional pin covered denim jacket.

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Sister’s Keeper

Sisters take each other’s clothes constantly, and it’s almost like an ongoing game of “who wore it better”. This is quite common for the fashionable Li sisters Karen (22), Winnie (19), and Judy (14). Winnie is a current second year at Northeastern University and her family is local to Boston. This trio of sisters have been into fashion ever since they were young, and Judy even attended a modeling camp over the summer. “She steals my clothes all the time, but she reinvents it and tailors it to her own looks,” Winnie says. A lot of the clothes that Winnie and Karen have are sometimes too big, but Judy has an affinity for baggier, oversized clothes so this has become part of her style. The sisters have bonded over fashion trends and have established their own unique sense of style using each other’s products. They get some of their most prized possessions from their mother: “A lot of my fashion is inspired by some of my mother’s older more vintage looks,” Judy says. “They’re the current trend and you also get to reuse any garments that may have been thrown away or sold otherwise.” Some of the favorites passed down from mother Li include striped hand-knit sweaters, vintage beat up adidas, and blue track pants. “When I tell my mom I love her clothes, she takes pride in them and tells me the story behind them, whether it used to be my sisters or belonged to her during her early residency in America. These stories live within the embroidered stitches of every piece of clothing passed down through generation.” Judy says. It is now the girls’ turn to weave their own story into the fashion adopted from their mother and from each other.

Fashion is a flowing river of change, shifting its course from generation to generation. It is evident that these trends have not only repeated through eras, but have become almost timeless in their own way. The constant reinvention of every vintage trend, through family culture, is what has really made an impact on fashion today.

Week in Review: The Avenue's Favorite Looks

By The Avenue’s Editorial Board

Maison Margiela Commemorates a Youth Revolution with SS19 Collection

By Taraneh Azar

Jonas Gustavsson / MCV Photo for The Washington Post

Jonas Gustavsson / MCV Photo for The Washington Post

Designer John Galliano’s latest Maison Margiela presentation celebrated the progressive qualities of millennial and Gen Z cultural adaptations while setting the bar for fashion, culture, and social expectations of the greater global community.

The Tuesday morning show acted not only to present John Galliano’s latest Ready to Wear collection for the house, but also to launch the designer’s first fragrance for the house–”Maison Margiela’s Mutiny.”

Kim Weston Arnold / Indigital.tv for Vogue

The story behind the fragrance coincides with the youth revolution theme of the collection. As Galliano put it in a podcast titled The Memory of… With John Galliano: “I deconstructed normative values and turned them into a hyper-faceted reconstruction, distilled in a fragrance for the future.” Speaking of his inspiration, Galliano explained, "it started with the idea of mutiny. There were things that were happening around me in the world, there was a lot of political unrest in Paris, then the Women’s March in America–the biggest march in the history of America . . . it was the courage of turning your back and standing up for what you believe in.” The fragrance aired throughout the Grand Palais while ads featuring campaign stars Willow Smith, Princess Nokia, Teddy Quinlivan, Sasha Lane, and others opened the show.

Beyond the perfume launch, Galliano’s presentation celebrated an increasing fluidity in gender presentation and a lack of tolerance for outdated social norms. The show was largely a commemoration of freedom of expression, as reflected in both his defiant approach to styling his models in garment that went against sanctioned gendered expectations and the changing functionality of the garments presented. With a manifesto of nonconformity, Galliano presents a collection that blurs the boundaries of the gender binary.

Oversized capes, ponchos, dresses and repurposed materials of all types categorized the collection. Translucent plastic mosaic skirts weaved together with grommeted silver hardware were styled with deconstructed blazer-vest hybrids. iPhones on mounts similar to those seen in Ubers and Lyfts were attached to chunky platform boots, referencing the instant availability of information that dictates 21st-century society. Gutted ponchos and wool coats styled with swimming caps led way to vinyl pants, which coincided with headphones sticking out of rigid handbags  and sweaters as belts. Galliano swapped the iconic Tabi boot for chunky, oversized platforms and sleek pointed-toe chelsea boots. One-piece forms and oversized and floppy suits led way to iridescent gold sculptural pieces and dresses, a traditionally feminine garment, for all models regardless of gender presentation.

The presentation resembled a group of people about to go swimming, but desperate to bring their sleeping bags and pillows just in case. Largely, the collection challenged many of the social norms that older generations remain disillusioned to yet younger, upcoming generations embrace with open arms. The well-established house managed to not only present a collection unlike any other, but also set a new bar and code of conduct. To quote Galliano, with Gen Z “there are no rules—you write the book.” See for yourself.

Rick Owens Sets Fire to Utopian Ideals, Partisanship and Paris Fashion Week

By Taraneh Azar

Valerio Mezzanotti for The New York Times

Valerio Mezzanotti for The New York Times

Featuring a cast of witches, a burning pyre, and a ceremonial runway proceeding, Rick Owens RTW for Spring 2019 at Paris Fashion week combined Owens’ classic take on form and androgyny with his characteristic garment drapery to haunting and beautiful effect.

The collection features intricate geometric elements and sculpture-like design on par with Owens’ typically highly-stylized and earth-toned form. Silk gowns sewn to dirty American flags swept the runway as hiking boots and frayed denim skirts mixed what we know and love about Rick Owens with hints of a new direction. Bikini tops were paired with architectural castings encasing models, while giant fabric-encased planks protruded from others. Stiff, restrictive fabrics juxtaposed with flowing silks and foliage-like fringes, exploring the balance between order, serenity, and chaos. These witches were equipped for ritualistic mountain ceremonies and suburban malls alike.

Kim Weston Arnold / Indigital.tv for Vogue

While his womenswear show last year featured a floating runway set over a pool of water, S/S 2019 was quite literally on fire. With a flaming pyramid at the center of the Palais de Tokyo courtyard, the show resembled a ritualistic ceremony as the models proceeded around the blazing structure to a fitting soundtrack by the witch house group, Ice3peak. According to a pre-show interview with WWD, Owens sought to “burn down a utopian moment”, explaining that his models were “California witches”. Tipping his hat to his own upbringing, Owens explained, “I brought my utopian California youth to Paris, and I’m setting it on fire.”

Mitchell Sams for i-D Magazine

Mitchell Sams for i-D Magazine

Models held torches and wore deconstructed architecturally-geometric crowns structures that mirrored the presentation’s centerpiece. Some models were clad in stiff sculptural tunics reminiscent of Issey Miyake’s famous geometric Bao Bao handbags, while others sported pieces more indicative of Owens’ traditional deconstructed poncho-like patchwork pieces. And while the tiny sunglasses of early-2018 had their time to shine, oversized sunnies are back once again as models wore goggle-like sunglasses to match their geometrically-stylized, chunky garments.

Needless to say, Rick Owens RTW S/S 2019 set PFW ablaze while laying the groundwork for what is to come. With global political stratification crystalized in this week’s Kavanaugh hearings, it is hard to strip Owens’ show from the incendiary responses to the state of global society and culture. With the novel pieces and strong sculptural elements of the collection, torch-wielding witches effectively burned down what we know to pave the way for a revolution.

Why I Wear Ugly Clothes

By Maddie Casey
Photographed by Fernanda Lopez

This article has been adapted for the web from our Outsider Issue.

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We’ve all experienced that feeling of seeing a piece of clothing, acknowledging it’s hideousness, and still, for some reason, really, really wanting it. I am very familiar with this sensation--I wrote my college essay about the fact that I wear Crocs. That’s not a joke, and no, I’m not sure why Northeastern admitted me after reading it. Now, Crocs are undeniably (almost) universally hated, especially in the fashion community, and understandably so. They’re brightly colored, made of rubber, have holes everywhere and specifically make cartoon-image charms to stick in those holes. There’s nothing to like. Except I do--I wear my bright blue Crocs all of the time, and not just as shower shoes. When it’s not below 50 degrees outside, you can find me sporting them around campus, to the beach, walking around the city, on walks in the woods--I’ve even worn my Crocs to parties. I know they’re ugly, but I love them. I think they’re so fun. They’re comfortable; they make me happy and they are genuinely one of my favorite pairs of shoes to wear (weird stares and all). I know that this sentiment is not shared by many. It got me thinking, though, why do people wear “ugly” clothes? And what other ugly things do other people love to wear? So, I spoke to a few fellow fashion lovers to try to figure it out.

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One item that came up plenty of times is Birkenstocks. Now, I know my mom thinks that these are ugly (she tells me all of the time). However, Birks, as they’re called by lovers of the shoe, are so trendy these days that it’s hard to think of them as ugly in the same way as Crocs. Really, though, so many things that are on trend were once viewed as ugly by the majority of people (or still are). Birkenstocks are a prime example, and people still refer to them as “Jesus sandals” all of the time. Another good example are oversized, brightly colored windbreakers. An item that was popular in the ‘80s, they were abhorred as incredibly ugly for a while, but have been back on trend lately with the rise of thrift style. Another item that fits this bill are bulky sneakers, which are really in style right now, but are also viewed as hideous by a lot of people. Plenty of high-profile brands are creating similar styles, like Fila, Reebok, and Adidas (whose collab with Raf Simons really started this trend), so they must be loved for some reason. Other people I spoke to about their favorite ugly clothes mentioned very unique, true-to-their-style pieces. Among these were Tevas, a fuzzy, pink shirt, patterned leggings, Uggs, “dad” sweaters, clear boots, and oversized, striped henleys.

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After thinking about all of these pieces, what does “ugly” even really mean? We all have our own personal styles, and just because something is viewed as ugly by many doesn’t mean there aren’t people who think it is amazing. People choose to wear “ugly” clothes all of the time, whether they themselves agree that they are ugly or they see them as a genuine fashion statement. Sometimes people even wear utterly hideous things just because they’re on trend or done by a major designer (I’m looking at you, Balenciaga Crocs). There are also people who view some of the trendiest items as ugly. As of late, one could even argue that ugly has become trendy. To wear a piece of clothing that others view as ugly that is completely off trend, though, it can take guts. Dealing with jokes from friends and stares from strangers is not something everyone is willing to do. Those who are, however, embrace and express their true selves and true style, and choose to wear what they love, despite the opinions of others--and isn’t that what fashion is really about? Since we all have our own tastes, nothing can really be “ugly” (except, maybe, Crocs). Whether it be for comfort, style or fun, there are so many reasons to wear “ugly,” so maybe we should all just embrace the fashion outsider inside of us.