Saturday, 02 August 2014, 8:33 am

Wear your heart on your sleeve

Valerie Ceko models her everyday outfits.  PHOTOS BY BRITTANY ERWINBy BRITTANY ERWIN
Columnist
We are often told to do what we know. What we know is the experiences we’ve had, and what has been shown to us.
People take the easy way out because they are scared of the unknown. This can happen in all aspects of life, but this happens a lot when it comes to fashion style.
People generally stick to the jeans and T-shirt look while occasionally dressing it up. Although it is more common for people to try new things and have a different style, it is still looked on as something that is so “out there” and not what everyone would do in their daily lives. Trying something new is a risk, and many people don’t like taking risks because of the unknown or because of being judged.
I have always had trouble with this. I love to wear loud prints and pair them with obnoxious statement necklaces and funky hats, but I was commonly viewed as there being something wrong with me. This has much to do with how you see yourself and how comfortable you are in your own skin.
Not everyone agrees that the clothes you wear say something about your personality.
Mike Moses, in the General Arts and Sciences program, says, “What really matters is actually getting to know that individual. I’ve met so many awesome people that prefer not dressing nice and looking presentable. It’s how you treat other people, how you treat yourself and how you show passion is what I think should tell you who they really are.”
He adds, “I’m not saying we should shun away the people who do dress nice everyday because they are rocking their confidence and ‘swagger’. I’m saying it’s best to actually see the person for who they are and not what brand of clothes they wear. Besides, I change my style of clothing on a daily basis, but that doesn’t mean I change my personality and the way I think.”
Wearing Aztec leggings with a striped shirt may be something you would throw on in the morning, but there is no way that it’s going to look good on you if you can’t “own it” or make people say, “wow!” People have to see that you are comfortable in the outfit you pick because the way that you present yourself, shows a great deal about you and your personality.
Mike Ravensbergen, in the Pre-Media and Design program, says, “The clothes you wear can say a lot about who you are. However, that shouldn’t be the basis for your opinion of a person. They can be used to display a person’s interests [for example, music shirts, sports team apparel, TV/movie themed clothing], their mood or feelings, or even their goals.”
“That being said, one should think about what impression the clothing they wear will give someone at that point of initial contact. If you don’t want people to mislabel you as a crazy party girl, don’t dress in a way that would send that kind of message.
If you don’t want to be seen as a disrespectful or offensive person, don’t wear shirts that display offensive messages or [display] obscene content,” says Ravensbergen.
This is why clothes are important. This is why I love fashion. It is personal. It is something that shows who you are, and it’s different everyday.  On Monday, you could be the type of person who loves to dance and go to clubs and you wear a little black dress accordingly. Tuesday you could be the girl who loves the indie look and you show that by backcombing your hair and wearing ripped leggings with a Rolling Stones T-shirt and combat boots. On Wednesday, you could be the girl who loves going to school and learning new things, and you show that by wearing a fitted jacket with pearls and loafers.
Bianca Gee, from the Police Foundations program, says, “It shows how the clothes you wear represent yourself. You barely want to wear clothes; that says a lot.”
Yes, our clothing can define us, and it often does. It’s the first thing a person sees when they look at you Often people assume the outfits you wear show who you are, and I believe it’s true, but it doesn’t mean you have to wear the same thing, and be the same person, every day. We can always change our clothes, and change our lives.

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