Name: Alyssa B.
Major: Advertising and Public Relations
Hometown: Los Angeles, California
What inspired your outfits? Lately, I’ve been really into mustard yellow and been eyeing these pants for a long time. I love florals and patterns. I decided to wear the floral top because normally people don’t wear patterns together, but I felt like the shoes tied it all together.
What is your everyday style? I think about this a lot because I really like fashion. I can’t say that I can choose one style because some days, I wake up and I want to be boho-chic and some days, I want to wear a vintage t-shirt and jeans and dress grungy. I don’t like to define my style by one certain genre or category of fashion. It changes day by day. Some days, I want to be girly, and some days, I want to wear all black.
Are there ways in which you conform to or rebel against what you think others want you to wear? I struggle with that a lot because there are some things I want to wear that people are uncomfortable with, because they might think my shorts are too short or my shirts are too cropped, but I realized I have to wear what I feel comfortable in and not let my personal style be determined by the public. I believe what I wear enhances my overall image and personal style. I think my fashion makes me feel strong and self-expressive.
Do you think you fit in with the Pacific Northwest style? Yes and no, but definitely since I’ve come here, my style has conformed. I wear Birkenstocks, and my style is definitely more “effortlessly cool” now. I’m more laid-back and not as “hottie tottie,” whereas, in L.A. I wanted to dress up to a certain extent every day.
How do you think fashion has affected your life? I think it has hugely affected my life because when I was 8 years old, I would obsess over fashion magazines. I try to take it seriously because I am constantly trying to find new ways to change my style. I search fashion blogs and try to find the most current colors or trends. I think it has taken over my life in a positive way. I love fashion.
What do you want to do when you’re older in terms of a job or career? I am not sure because I feel like I have a couple different options. Ever since I was young, I wanted to work for a fashion magazine, whether it was as a stylist or editor. I also love writing, so I think that would be the perfect career for me. I could also see myself starting my own business with a boutique or clothing store.
What draws you to fashion? Why is it so important to you? The elegance of it. When I was younger, I would idolize people who had it all together in terms of their outfits and how they presented themselves. I think clothes are a key factor to self-confidence. Fashion is a form of art to me.
Why did you start making your own clothing? It was a spur of a moment thing. I realized other people would probably want the shirts I was making, and the money aspect played a key role too. The shirts I make are a cheaper version of LF’s shirts, which are in popular demand amongst college students. They are also fun to make; it’s not like a job to me. It’s actually relaxing.
How do you sell them? I sell them on Poshmark and Mercari, which are apps made to sell clothing items. Similar to Buffalo Exchange, some things are new and some things are old. I also sell them to my friends.
How many have I sold? I have sold 19, and the sales just keep coming in, which is really exciting.
Why this design? Although this design is not a completely original idea, I have added my own touch to it. The reason I started making these is because I love vintage tees. They are not only practical, but they are also effortless. I think that is what my style is moving towards, and I think that everyone can attain this effortlessly cool look through my t-shirts. I also wanted to make a t-shirt that was more affordable than the original ones, something that was more accessible and something that was more handpicked and crafted towards certain peoples’ interests and likes.
How would you describe the style? As far as the style goes, I’ve been really into thrifting lately and finding hidden gems. So, when I look for shirts every week at various thrift stores, I keep in mind what I would like and what some of my friends and idols would like as well. The best part about adding this lacing detail is that it takes an ordinary shirt and adds a bold touch to it. It doesn’t really have any limits to where you can wear it. I find myself wearing it while lounging around in the house, going out with friends to a party and even just going to class. It is very versatile, and it’s comfortable. That’s a main component to me. It is one of those shirts that you can throw on for any occasion, and it will lie perfectly on you. A part of me feels special wearing it too because I know that it was handmade and made with love and care.
What have you learned about fashion through making clothes? I have learned that fashion is very limitless; it allows you to do the strangest things to clothing items. It also is this beautiful thing through which you can create and just test new things and see if you like them. With every piece I make, it’s hard for me to sell them because I put so much time and investment in them that usually I want to keep them. But of course, I have a mini business where I have to sell them.
What do you want to make in the future? I’ve been coming up with new designs and testing new things, but for now, I think I want to stick to different vintage t-shirt designs. Although I’ve been really into distressing vintage Levi 501’s. so I might try and do something new and fun to jeans and shorts to add another layer to my little business.
Words and photos by Alie Williams