Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Cotton Shock: My First American Fashion Experience

Well for all those who didn't know,I recently relocated to the United States from Switzerland in order to attend my new university, Boston University in Massachussetts. I love it and Boston très bien, and have delved whole-heartedly and open-mindedlyinto making the best of this experience. That being said, there are some very intriguing things that I have noticed since I got here and I feel that it is my duty to share them with you, over the next couple of weeks, starting with the story of my first American fashion experience, that I have so rightly called cotton shock and you shall soon see why.
It has been about 8 years since I last lived in or visited the United States and fashion-wise, not much has changed really, from what I can remember of it. For some reason, despite all the hype around European fashion here, I never really believed that there was a great difference between American and European fashion and thought that my predominantly Swiss wardrobe would fit in fine. But, strange things kept happening whenever I walked out of my room each morning. Some days, it would just be a random stranger (male or female) complimenting my outfit. But there were some other more interesting occurences.

For example, on one cold and blustery, rainy day as I returned to my dormitory, this random guy started talking to me about how he was in the army and was going back in two days on an assignment, and how he was almost run over by a car. Then he asked me where I was from, and told me I was very beautiful and very well dressed. I was quite stunned, but recovered quickly and thanked him. He explained that he wasn't trying to pick me up but that he was curious about my origin because I did not look American. Several other similar events where I had been mistaken for Haitian, or Carribean, had happened and when I went for dinner that night with my (American) roommate and her friend, I asked her why I was so obviously not from around here. She then explained that partially it was my personal style, which I agree is quite out there, but that it was mostly because most of my clothes are not a 100% cotton. Apparently, most American clothes are made solely out of cotton and so therefore have the same general look. But I stuck out because most of my clothes where not cotton, and quite a few of them had bold floral or funky prints on the fabric.
This intrigued me greatly and led me to ponder this question: Would I americanize my wardrobe in order to fit in or would I rather continue to flaunt my personal style and hunt down pieces that fit in with it, despite the attention it gets me? Basically, would I rather blend in or stand out? I wouldn't be me if I didn't choose the latter. I have to remain true to myself. I'm different and proud of it! And I hope you all have the courage to remain true to yourselves too dearest devotees. Because being you makes you happy.

Bottom Picture from: kellymallory; top picture from: justingaynor

Love you all and Stay inspired,

P.S. So let me know what you think. Have you ever faced a situation in which you have to make an effort to remain who you are despite the fact it makes you stand out? Do you have a distinct personal style that truly represents you and that you wouldn't let go of no matter what? And have you experienced culture shock, style wise or not ? Feel free to let me know in the comments below and please follow this blog if you liked this post.

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