Style within local businesses
October 15, 2021
In our area, style is a very important aspect of everyday life. Whether we notice style based upon what people choose to wear or what people feel most comfortable in, is very relevant in our community. I conducted interviews with a few local and small businesses in our area, and asked them their thoughts on style.
Charmed by Jessie, is a local business that is run by a sophomore at Eastern High School in Voorhees, New Jersey. Jessie is both an entrepreneur and jewelry designer who started her own business at age 12. She makes bracelets, necklaces, rings, masks and sunglass chains, and is best known for her personalized bracelets. She has many bracelet collections including some dedicated to friendship, candy, and heishi bracelets. Because Ravitz struggles from an eating disorder she looks to spread body positivity and support mental health through her business. She quotes, “everyone has their something and this is hers.” When I interviewed her I first asked for her to style a stack of bracelets or any pieces of jewelry from her business. (followed by the image below.) Jessie said, “To stack bracelets you need to be simple with some color! This one is my favorite of all time.” My next question to her was, Do you feel that style is important in everyday life? She replied, “Style is of course important because it’s in our everyday life. Studies say that color can actually change your mood. Putting on those bracelets will make you feel on top of the world as I say!” Another question I asked her was, Does your business notice a particular style “changes” or new trends and make/order those particular items? She answered this question by, “Yes! The trend is changing every single day truthfully. We see so many different styles that come and go. What really stays is simple. I of course follow the trends, but remember what my company is about. We stick to what we believe in!” Finally my last question to her was, Do you think self expression and confidence is one of the most powerful things about style and fashion? Jessie wrote back and said, “Being yourself is the most important thing in fashion. I think self expression can be scary. But trying to be someone or something else is not the best idea. It may be awkward at first, but go for it! Wear what you wanna wear and be who you want to be!”
The next interview I conducted was between sophomore East Student Lauren Greenberg. Lauren and her sister Brooke are involved in their local business, Tie Dye Lab in Cherry Hill New Jersey. Tie Dye Lab is a custom made business full of retro Tie- Dye. This business is a hand- dyed apparel that you have the access to design your own lifestyle. When I interviewed Lauren I again asked for her to style an outfit from her business. (followed by image below.) Lauren says, “Here is a look that’s styled by our model Grace, who is wearing a spiral crew + sweats set paired back with classic AF1’s. Transforming the loungewear into streetwear is easy with a matching set and sneakers to bring the look together!” The next question for Lauren was, What do you think the most important aspect of style is? She wrote back with, “I find the most important aspect in style is staying true to your “identity.” As cliche as it may seem, style has an important role on how others view our personality. For instance, it is almost as a reflection to our personality that others may not know through this form of expression. Following up, my next question was: Does your business notice particular style “changes” or new trends and make/order those particular items? She answered this question with, “Owning a business, especially through the pandemic has definitely changed the look of our average customer based on their needs shifting. When we first launched back in 2020, everyone was working from home , and thus matching sets were a must to get through the grueling hours on the screen. Not only did they make light of the lack of work clothes, it was versatile to wear loungewear during the day. Now as people’s lives are getting back to normal, with students and jobs going back in person, the needs have changed. With colleges back on campus for instance, our game day line has spiked in demand. My other question for Lauren was, Do you feel that style is important in everyday life? She replied with, “To me, style is a way to represent your personality in a form others may not know without getting to know you. Ultimately, your style should make you feel your best. Lastly, she was asked if she thinks self expression and confidence is one of the most powerful things about style and fashion? Lauren replied with,
“I definitely find that certain looks can elevate the mood, and even give people a new opportunity to gain confidence in feeling good in what you wear.”
The last interview I conducted was with Michelle Stander, owner of a local store in the area, Mixellaneous in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Mixellaneous is a boutique full of clothing, jewelry and gifts. When I interviewed Michelle, I first asked her to style an outfit from her boutique as shown below.When asked the most important aspect, Stander explained that, “The most important aspect is a personal thing, I think that if you feel good about yourself and you are wearing clothes that look good on you and that you are happy about, I feel that is what style is about.” My next question was: Does your store notice particular style “changes” or new trends and make/order those particular items? Michelle responded with, “Yes, to a point. We are not a real high fashion-forward store. That being said, we still want to keep up with the current trends. We do keep up with current trends. We are not a die heart trendy store because we are not the trendiest of stores. We keep up with current trends and we try to translate the trend for our customers.” The following question is: Do you feel that style is important in everyday life? She answered with, “Personally I do because I am a boutique owner and I feel like I can’t walk around with something that does not look good on me. People come in and I think I represent my business. So for me, I think style is important. The last question was: Do you think self expression and confidence is one of the most powerful things about style and fashion? Michelle’s response was, “100%. I just watched a documentary, her name is Iris; she is a style icon who wears stuff off the runway but she has style and she is very confident and you can tell she is confident because she is wearing things that do not have labels on it and the latest style, she is styling herself and I think that is the most important thing is confidence and the way you wear it.”
To conclude, style is a very important aspect in our community with the various local businesses we have. We constantly see how different people present themselves in what they wear. Overall, style is not only important in our individual lives, but around our community as well.