Comfortable in a chunky plaid cardigan, Susan Lee ’19 sports one of the many vintage pieces that once belonged to her grandmother in the ’50s. She often mixes these with streetwear styles.
“I want everything Susan owns. She has the best wardrobe… She always adds a vintage touch, but she never looks out of date, which is harder to pull off than she makes it seem,” wrote Marieta Rojas ’18, a friend of Lee’s, in an email to The Phillipian.
Lee considers mixing and matching different styles to be very important in pulling off her outfits.
“I just think that things put together look nicer than if you’re just trying to pull off one style. I usually try to mix things from [my grandma’s] closets with newer stuff, just because I don’t really want to look like my grandma; I just want to take from her style. So I’ll mix a lot of old vintage things with my brother’s clothes. I feel like a lot of my style is just stolen from my family members, and I just put them together,” said Lee.
According to Lee, her vintage style is influenced by her mother and grandmother. She finds special pieces from decades ago hidden away in their closets and attics.
“Most of the clothes I take are things that I’ve never seen them wear, just because it’s from such a long time ago. I went home [this break] with one suitcase and came back with two or three — I took a lot of good things this time. [My grandma] used to be a news anchor, and [I took] this really good green skirt that she used to wear on air,” said Lee.
Lee takes inspiration from her surroundings, whether it’s from her family or from her middle school in Korea, and incorporates pieces she likes into her mix-and-match style.
“Growing up I saw a lot of typical Korean wear. I thought that parts of it were pretty cool, like a lot of typical Korean middle school wear — usually like a pencil skirt and skin-colored tights and the coat with this weird kind of buttons on it — and I would look at it, and I would think parts of it was cool, but put together I wasn’t really vibing with it… I guess that kind of plays into my whole mix and match thing — I’m really into parts of different outfits, but I wouldn’t wear them all together,” said Lee.
Hair color has been a unique way in which Lee expresses herself. She considers the practice a vestige of her middle school career.
“[My hair] was purple at one point, it went rainbow, and then I found these really cool iridescent hair colors. I think the hair thing was definitely a vestige of me acting out in middle school. The whole Korean middle school thing is pretty obedient and not very rebellious, and this went with my whole dressing in black stint and having my nails black thing — I was a pretty typical middle schooler,” said Lee.