Both on-stage and in the snow, Haille McKenzie ’15 rocks a pair of beat-up black Converse sneakers that she has decorated continuously since she bought them in the sixth grade.
An avid music listener and musician, McKenzie gathers inspiration for her wardrobe from musicians and celebrities to create a “soft grunge” look.
“I feel like it’s fun to dress kind of tomboyish but do your makeup really nice, wear nice jewelry and have your hair really nice, so it’s a touch of femininity. I try to look like I’m in a band, but then look really pretty doing it. That’s sort of the goal for me,” said McKenzie.
Much like her favorite musicians, McKenzie prefers a muted color palette in her wardrobe. Her typical outfit consists of either a white or grey T-shirt and black skinny jeans.
“I wear a lot of black, white and grey just because I think those always look the classiest together,” said McKenzie. To add flair to her looks, McKenzie adds jewelry such as gold pendants and rings.
“[McKenzie] has a lot of basic clothes, but she accentuates them with great accessories and other kinds of cardigans, sweaters or jackets that kind of pull the whole outfit together,” said Riley Hughes ’17.
One of McKenzie’s favorite items is a pair of beat-up black Converse sneakers, which she wears everywhere, including to concerts and in the snow. The sneakers have been with her since sixth grade, and she has decorated them with a variety of colored pens.
“They’re totally falling apart! I could get a new pair, but I just can’t wear Converse if they’re not worn-in. They have to look totally messed up and dirty and kind of gross because then they look cool to me,” said McKenzie.
In addition to admiring the style of musicians, McKenzie also looks to celebrities such as Kylie Jenner for style inspiration. She uses her icons to guide her shopping and advises others to do the same.
“When I’m shopping I’ll be, like, ‘Would Kylie Jenner wear this?’ And I’ll be like ‘Yes, she would,’ and I get it… Don’t wear anything that you can’t picture the coolest person you can think of wearing,” said McKenzie.
McKenzie firmly believes that one’s clothing correlates to their confidence level. “I think that if you look good, you feel good. You’re just more confident and you feel like you can do anything. And it’s just more fun. When you look nice, you feel like you can run the world,” she said.
“For me, it would be really easy to just wear jeans and a T-shirt everyday, but I try to keep things interesting for my own sake and to keep people guessing, like, ‘Oh, I didn’t think she’d wear that,’ but I did, and I pulled it off, and I look awesome. I think the best thing is to be confident about what you’re wearing because people will just go with it,” said McKenzie.