Addie Allen ’21 pairs her favorite black off-shoulder sweater with an A-line denim skirt and black high-heeled boots. For accessories, Allen slips on slim silver rings and her signature necklace: her grandmother’s ring on a silver chain.
“It’s my grandmother’s wedding ring. My dad had worn it everyday since she died, but when I came to Andover he passed it onto me, so now I do the same,” said Allen.
Although her style is a combination of many of popular styles, Allen adds her own touch with sentimental or personal accessories. In addition to her grandmother’s ring, Allen’s favorite item is her customized Converse sneakers.
“The Converse: I did it online on the website [because] I wanted something that felt less like a mass-made product and a bit more like mine. Around the edge, it says ‘love what you do’ because that’s what I want out of life — to love where I am and who I am,” said Allen.
Every day, Allen picks out her outfits to showcase the nuances of her character. Taking inspiration from a multitude of different styles, Allen reveals her distinct personality and mood in each outfit.
“I try to dress in a lot of different ways because I think the styles that you incorporate show different layers of your personality. There could be one day where I’m in an athleisure-type look. The next, I could be going full formal, just because that’s the way I’m feeling that day,” said Allen.
Hoben Chargualaf ’21, Allen’s friend, says that Allen’s style conveys her outgoing and confident personality.
Chargualaf said, “I feel like Addie comes off as a very confident person, mostly because she enjoys dressing for herself rather than dressing to please other people. Her style isn’t necessarily something that’s hers, per se. She likes to pull from many other people. It definitely reflects her personality and her confidence in herself.”
According to Chargualaf, the confidence that Allen emanates through her styling choices infects those around her, inspiring them to become more bold.
“I feel like seeing Addie be comfortable in her clothes makes me want to show up in a way that I want to show up, and not trying to follow a trend,” Chargualaf said.
Allen says, however, that her style has not always been distinctive. But as she has grown, her style has become more adaptable and diverse.
“When I was young, I thought that the only way one should dress was to wear those little Gap outfits: head to toe very matched, very preppy. I had to have my matching headband and ballet flats and a skirt and blouse… Recently, I’ve been trying to branch out,” said Allen.
While her style is evidently flexible, one thing that has remained constant is the inspiration Allen finds in her mom.
“Something she always told me was that I should be dressing for me and how I feel most comfortable, not worrying about how other people are going to think of it or what people tell me I should be wearing,” said Allen. “She always told me to keep it classy, which I feel like is a good thing.”
Allen hopes to use her style of variety to inspire others to wear what they want to and not to conform to a trend or a style.
“The biggest thing for me when I’m thinking about fashion, in general, is that you shouldn’t put yourself in a box. There’s also this pressure to say, ‘You have to find your signature style, your signature look,’ and I don’t think that’s the way it has to be. I think you can, every day, look like a completely different person, have a completely different view. That’s the message I like to try and send,” said Allen.