The past year has been a rollercoaster for everyone in the world because of the lasting hardships the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown had. The lockdown and pandemic has changed many lives negatively, but also positively. The period became one of evolution for many aspects of life, particularly people’s fashion style. Since the end of lockdown, students like myself have transformed their style to feel and look good. I asked the staff at Ink questions about their style-and their style evolution before, during, and after the lockdown.
By: Kayla Lundy, Staff Writer
Before lockdown, how would you describe your overall style? What was your favorite piece of clothing and why?
Before lockdown, I think that my style was just kind of…thrift store chic. I think my style has improved since then, but it hasn’t changed drastically, either. I think my favorite thing to wear then was a black crew neck sweatshirt with a buoy on it. It says “Town Point Club,” I got it at a thrift store in Norfolk. It wasn’t anything spectacular, but I felt good in it, it was cute, I felt confident going out in it, and it was warm. I think it’s buried somewhere in my girlfriend’s closet right now, she loves that sweatshirt. I might not get it back but I’d rather not think about that..
Through the lockdown months, did your style ever change? If so, what changed about your style or the choices of fashion you made and what influenced those decisions?
During the lockdown, I found myself drifting from my regular slim fit black pants and fell in love with this pair of vintage Levi’s I have. I didn’t have anywhere to go but found myself feeling better about things if I put on real clothes instead of chilling in pajamas all day. I was still rocking t-shirts most of the time and tucking them into those jeans, but I really enjoyed becoming comfortable and confident in looser-fitting pants. That’s really the biggest thing, nothing else changed too much.
Did the changes of your style affect your mood or how you thought about yourself during the COVID-19 lockdown?
Absolutely. I really felt way more confident and better about myself if I put on actual clothes instead of wearing sweatpants or pajamas all day. I think that focusing on clothes and fashion to an extent kind of pushed me to get out and exercise during lockdown too, like not only did I want to feel confident through what I was wearing, I also wanted to be healthy and be confident in my body. I was biking a lot in those months and I was a big fan of these vintage exercise shorts I had- borderline booty shorts- but those recently melted in my apartment’s dryer. I was also focusing on music, writing, photography, cocktailing, and cooking then, too. I felt that if I was wearing real clothes and a nice outfit then I was more confident in pursuing artistic endeavors.
Once the lockdown came to pass, were you excited to try out new styles or fashion? Did you feel like a new version of yourself when your style evolved?
Definitely. I don’t think the desire was as strong to try new styles and stuff just after the lockdown, but it has been lately…I guess we are still coming out of a lockdown. My obsession lately has been vintage jeans, I have a cool pair of ‘90s Wranglers that I wear almost every day, and I’m always hunting for yellow tag Levi’s.
I’ve gotten really into pearl snap shirts and trucker hats, too…kind of channeling old man energy into my outfits. I’ve also really gotten into shaving lately, like I look forward to using nice products and a nice safety razor two or three times a week. I feel like my mindset right now regarding how I dress is that I’m just trying to raise the bar a bit; vintage jeans that fit me well, a nice jacket, clean shave, that sort of thing. I don’t necessarily feel like a new version of myself, but I think that I’ve definitely refined my style a bit and take more care to present myself well.
Overall, how does fashion affect your confidence?
I think fashion affects my confidence by helping me feel like the person I want to be, if that makes any sort of sense. Maybe it’s a cosplay/dress-up thing in a way, like I have an idea of a brand or aesthetic I want to present myself as, and picking clothes every morning is kind of like working towards that. Whenever I have band practice, I usually put on an outfit I’m super confident in because it makes me feel like I look cool, as cheesy as that sounds. It’s kind of like, ‘Oh yeah, I look like someone who’s in a band right now.’ Whether that’s a conscious decision or not, I think it’s a level of confidence that helps me get the job done and makes me feel like a main character, no matter what I’m doing. I think it’s kind of a ‘you have to look good to feel good’ thing, at least for me. That’s not to say that I don’t feel good if I’m not dressed up or that this is something that applies to everyone, but I feel like a nice outfit helps me be more comfortable and confident in any setting.