If it looks blah, I’m going to feel blah.
We are living in an era where fashion is completely subjective. Although big brands will always determine the trends, there’s less pressure to conform and more room to use clothing as a form of self-expression. It’s gotten to the point that tasteful fashion can be found anywhere and on anyone; even in the midwest for a college student who may not have the budget to afford the Prada lifestyle.
Kaylin Clotfelter is a student at Missouri State University who dresses to the top. You won’t be able to catch her off guard for a random photoshoot. Believe me, she’s always ready.
“I’m in between saying I want to be a director and that I am a director. I make videos that are focused around visuals. My main goal is to make everything look pretty. Oh, and I also love modeling and buying clothes.”
Tell us about your style.
Mostly 90s with hints of the better parts of 2000s, wishing there were more 70s pieces. I try to only buy items that are strong statement pieces on their own, so that no matter what I pair it with it will stand out. There’s a lot more to my style than people actually see, because I can’t buy everything I want. So physically I’m a small representation of my actual style (which exists largely in my imagination).
In short, me trying to look richer than I am.
Where do you buy your clothing?
Thrift stores, Depop, Instagram shops, and occasionally some online stores.
How do you know whether a piece of clothing is worth buying?
I don’t! I buy stuff and regret it almost as often as I buy something and love it. But my rule of thumb for styling day-to-day looks is trying to put together a combination of items that I haven’t worn before. My general goal for getting ready is to look cool enough to be able to do a photoshoot if I needed to. But if I’m running late, I have a few go-to classics.
Is sustainable fashion important to you?
I think I’m sustainable more by accident. It’s not the biggest concern of mine, because in the end if I like it I’ll buy it. I shop mostly vintage because it allows me to get more unique items that are better made at a cheaper price than I could buying new. If I bought stuff from F21 we wouldn’t be having this Q&A. I guess that makes me semi-sustainable?
When did you really find your style?
I don’t think I really have. I know what I like, but I’m still just copying things I see. I don’t have enough money to develop my style to true originality yet.
But some of my fashion icons are @double3exposure @accidentalinfluencer @sisiliapiring and @haleyappell
Compared to your community, how is your style different?
At school, most people wear completely casual clothes on a day to day basis. I try to dress up every day no matter what. Even on the days I wake up too late to put something together I somehow still outdress most everyone else. I’m not sure why.
Have you ever been mocked/ made fun of about your style?
Yes. In high school, if someone jokingly made fun of my outfit it was my way of knowing that it was actually a cool one. I don’t really care if someone makes fun of it unless it’s someone whose opinion I really value. In that case, I consider it constructive criticism.
Mostly if I feel self-conscious about an outfit I remind myself that it would look sweet in photos, so there’s no reason I can’t just wear it for normal life too.
Would you say that your style is a form of self-expression?
Definitely. I like to make sure I look cooler than everyone else, even if that’s not necessarily true. If I’m wearing a totally blah outfit, or really even just a sort of blah outfit, or if I realize the fit was a flop halfway through the day I’m in a bad mood until I can change. I feel like trash if I’m not dressed cool.
What fashion trend do you wish would die and never return?
I can’t really think of anything especially horrid. Everything should have a chance and could potentially be good if styled the right way. (I’m gonna regret saying this next time I see someone wearing flip flops.)