I grew up on Staten Island — which often gets a bad rap fashion-wise (thanks a lot, Jersey Shore); but I tried my best to keep up with trends. I devoured fashion magazines, celebrity style, and spent a good portion of my lifeguarding money at the mall. I valued expressing myself through my personal — sometimes quirky — style, and all of this is likely why I work in fashion today.
My ex-boyfriend, however, along with many of his friends, weren’t a thing like me. They dressed in what was mainstream at the time: Ed Hardy shirts (I guess those graphic tees got a pass?) and "needed" to own the newest pair of Jordans. The girls they hung out with opted for sexy styles over anything. While I showed up to Winter house parties bundled in a coat and scarf (because, um, Winter), they wore minidresses and heels. It made me feel a lot like Tai from Clueless, struggling to make my shortalls and button-down look "hot," while they danced away in Cher’s tight white dress.