fall/ winter 2017
contributors Maria Adetunji Layla Alexander Peyton Ayers Molly Breitbart Erin Bronner Fatima Burgos Kevin Chu Miarosa Ciallella Abby Clemente Carolina Dalia Gonzalez Courtney DeVita Sydney Okolo Teddy Ostrow Nabila Haque Otoshi Alexis Ifill Sabine Jean-Batiste Caitlin Lent Francesca Levethan Andy Liu Ally Lozada Louisa Mascuch Darinelle Merced-Calderon Vasilio Mosko Anya Serkovic Simmone Shah Hifza Shaukat Jamie Sutton Taya Voronko Caroline Wallis Jamine Weber Elle Wolfley Hannah Zwick
additional thanks to Ajaie Alaie Bode Jasmine Chen Asia Cunningham Barbara Desilva Faeber Studio Alexa Fleet Sosa Osarieme Doriane van Overeem Sophie Fox Clara Hirsch Kokorico Jewelry Emmi Mack Emma Noelle Outdoor Voices Maddie Rae Reina Rebelde Hana Rivers
masthead Editor-in-Chief Anisa Tavangar Logistics Director Kaeli Streeter Photo Director, Holler Phoebe Jones Photo Director, Hoot Emily Kimura Fashion Director Sloane A. Gustafson Features Director Paris Parker-Loan Design Director Rebecca Siqueiros Copy Chief Jacquelyn Klein Market Director Paloma Raines
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letter from the editor When considering the theme for this semester, Sloane, Kaeli, Phoebe, Paris, and I wanted to capture a complicated feeling— that of beginning and end, of continuation, of cycles. As the graduating board members, the five of us are stepping down from our positions. When Kaeli suggested, “ouroboros!” we gave her a puzzled look and took to Google to decode the word, even pulling up pronunciation videos on YouTube. The ancient symbol of a snake eating it’s own tail, a visualization of cyclicality and the persistence of infinity, was the perfect way to describe how we feel completing our tenure at Hoot and passing the magazine on to a fresh team of editors. Running the magazine these past 2.5 years has been more meaningful than I could have imagined. The individuals I worked with transformed from strangers to co-workers to friends to family. Hoot has become a true creative community, bringing in more voices from a range of identities, aesthetics, and areas of study, developing a unique entity through the thoughtfulness that Columbia fosters and the unabashed creativity of New York.This issue allowed us to round out our experience as editors, completing our biggest brand partnership yet with Outdoor Voices, training emerging editors, exploring cultural identities that Hoot hasn’t approached before, and completing our last shoots as a team, as I affectionately call us, of hooties. There are moments when I doubt myself or think Hoot’s achievements are a fluke but it’s the support system embedded in the group that confirms this organization is much more than the flaws or abilities of just one person. We uplift each other, lean on each other’s strengths, and make up for each other’s weaknesses. When school gets hard and finals pile up, Hoot is creative relief. As Sloane puts it, “we’ll never fail out of Hoot and that’s my favorite part about it”. We allowed ourselves to take risks, seeing the magazine through the inception of Holler, beginning of brand collaborations, gaining media coverage for our approach to inclusion, and rise into a recognizable campus institution. Our departure is bitter sweet but we couldn’t be more excited to see how the magazine will transform under a new team with bright ideas and a similar enthusiasm for making Hoot as far-reaching and representative as possible. I couldn’t have imagined the impact this magazine has grown to have at Columbia and beyond and am so happy that this legacy of impact through beauty is continuing. For the last time, thank you, from the bottom of my heart and soul, for reading and sharing Hoot.
prairie rose directors Layla Alexander, Caroline Wallis photographer Caroline Wallis stylist Layla Alexander makeup Anya Serkovic models Georgina Gonzalez, Perla Haney-Jardine, Nico
Lopez-Alegria, Charis Morgan, Connor Warnick clothing from student closets.
amelioration writer Molly Breitbart
On my way to work this morning, I bit into a crisp apple.There’s something romantic about eating an apple on an autumn morning that gets lost in translation as the seasons cycle on. It’s currently December. This was not a romantic apple. Chewing closer and closer towards the center, flesh and skin tumbling together in my mouth, I recall summer road trips to the Berkshires. James Taylor on the radio, achingly colorful skies at dusk, the soft breeze of the Taconic infiltrating the family car, my mother in the passenger seat, sinking her teeth into a piece of fruit. Nectarines in June, peaches in July, plums in August, juice dribbling down her chin, wide eyes, content. Apples—the romantic kind—were for September, when that end-of-summer, orchard-and-bonfire scent perfumed the air. She used to hurl the stone fruit pits and acidic apple cores out of her rolled down window. They would spiral backwards into space at sixty miles per hour as our car careened across state lines with never-ending inertia. It always irked me, watching my mother flick a wrist and expel the heart of something. I grieved for those apple cores, abandoned on roadsides with car crash wreaths and makeshift wooden crosses. Roadside monuments never cease to unsettle me: they blend into my understanding of the now-familiar landscape, whisper a distant, bloody history through wildflower stems. They are ever-present reminders that an object at rest will stay at rest, fastened into soil, tethered to the earth by disintegration. That spot in my gut would pound furiously as I watched cores sail, nearly missing remembrances: the bereaved, my mother, were altering this pastoral that I had memorized. Effectively littering. Yet when I fussed over the minutiae my mother had speckled across the landscape, she breathed a confident laugh, insisting that her flippant disposal was environmentally sound and that her actions changed nothing. In a way, she was returning something borrowed. Outside of my office building, I stare at the core I’ve been gnawing towards. The word biodegradable writes itself on the oxidized decay of my apple. Expiration and creation became bedfellows in my mind’s eye. Expiration is too finite a word. Amelioration—an uninterrupted stream of enrichment—that fits the resounding, knowing thud in my gut. I consider body parts and apple seeds mingling as they decompose into fecund earth, taking this almost spring into summer into that time of year where romantic apples return. Before entering the building, I hurled my apple core into the woods. This was a private send-off and a prayerful rebirth. Once I felt compelled to memorialize something that was built to deteriorate; now I long to encourage its natural course. Human bodies and pieces of fruit serve a common purpose. Betterment comes naturally. We all must return whatever it is we have borrowed.
metalezcla director Carolina Dalia Gonzalez photographer Emily Kimura stylist Mia Ciallella makeup Carolina Dalia Gonzalez, Anisa Tavangar assistants Caitlin Lent, Anisa Tavangar models Camilla Siazon makeup Reina Rebelde
in the grass director Sloane A. Gustafson, Anisa Tavangar photographer Phoebe Jones makeup Anisa Tavangar assistants Paris Parker-Loan, Nabila Haque Otoshi models Isabella Lajara, Johanna Zwirner clothing Bode, Outdoor Voices
secondhand savvy writer Erin Bronner
A beloved pair of brown wool slacks. A $3 early ‘00s Juicy Couture track jacket. The entire Red Hot Chili Peppers discography. These are just some of the treasures in the thrift collectinos of Barnard first-years Danielle Bruce and Ivanna Charlotte Rodríguez-Rojas. “I’ve been in a committed relationship with thrifting since the first week my mother and I migrated to the United States about 12 years ago,” says RodríguezRojas. “We just could not afford to buy brand new things, you know? It’s funny to see that something I was originally ashamed of and mocked for is now the ‘edgy’ thing to do, but I’m here for it whether it’s for aesthetic purposes or straight up necessity.” Indeed, the power of thrifting surpasses the prospect of scoring cool pieces. Buying secondhand is a more ethical and sustainable alternative to supporting fast fashion retailers. The True Cost (2015), an award-winning documentary exposé, explains how mass-merchandizers exploit marginalized people. Many subcontract factories overseas, beyond the jurisdiction of buyer nations’ governments and unregulated by local laws, and are left free to commit human rights violations in their day-to-day operations. Employees, most of whom are women and children as young as twelve, receive shockingly low wages while risking their lives operating dangerous machinery in poorly-maintained buildings. Thrifting is an easy way to push back against fast fashion’s kyriarchal practices and encourage ethical consumption. Rising interest in shopping secondhand also provides a promising solution to the enormous strain fast fashion puts on the environment. Aside from the obvious CO2 emissions released by factories, the increased use of pesticides on genetically modified cotton and the pouring of chromium into rivers by tanneries are also culprits. Even a single purchase can have a large impact— each garment requires land to grow materials, chemicals to process them, and energy to produce them. By giving clothes a second life through secondhand purchases, you can take a stand to disrupt the linear manner by which fast fashion pollutes the environment from production to disposal. The past few years have seen the emergence of several lines that market themselves as ethical and sustainable alternatives. While a step forward, these brands still have a way to go before they fully live up to their optimistic marketing. Everlane, for example, uses the term “Radical Transparency” for practices, which include finding factories with fair wages and work environments, breaking down the cost of each step of the manufacturing process, and providing an interactive map with details on conditions in all of their factories. Still, the brand refuses to disclose the names or addresses of these factories, instead denoting them only by the type of garments they produce (Even H&M discloses these details). Reformation provides a host of information on their sustainability methods, using “RefScale methodology” to calculate the CO2, water, and waste outputs for each garment. They source the majority of materials domestically and, unlike Everlane, claim to have an entirely
carbon-neutral shipping program. However, Reformation admits that there is “room for improvement” in their textile selection, as they do use viscose, a plant-based textile that has far lower impact than cotton but is still extracted with the toxic chemical carbon disulfide. Moreover, these two lines are not eceonomically accessible for many; being environmentally-friendly should not be marketed as a privilege of the socioeconomic elite. Until there are brands with completely ethical, sustainable, and transparent practices, as well as accessible price points, thrifting remains the best option. Know Where to Go One of the perks of living in the city is the abundance of thrift, vintage, and consignment stores. Bruce includes Beacon’s Closet and Search and Destroy among her starter recommendations, while Rodríguez-Rojas advises that these smaller curated shops “will have amazing things but for nearly face value.” She recommends the Goodwill Superstore on 3rd Avenue (East Harlem) for “3 floors of thrift joy” and East Village Thrift Shop for curated sections and good prices. Housing Works Thrift Shops provides funding and services for New Yorkers experiencing homelessness and HIV/AIDS. Mission: Replicate As derivatives of the latest runway looks pop up in H&M, take note of your favorites and look for similar pieces at secondhand shops. “A lot of recent trends have thrown back to the ‘90s and early ‘00s,” Bruce notes, “so it feels like a much more genuine way of buying into those fads.” What better way to achieve a nineties look than to find clothes that actually saw the nineties? Shop in all Sections Because the apparel industry perpetuates the construct of gender in order to mark up products, you can easily miss out on pieces that might suit you better than those marketed to you. Slimmer-cut sweaters and pants with pockets, anyone? Still, always be mindful of your intentions—if you have cis privilege, avoid shopping in sections labeled as other genders just because some mainstream entity calls it “ontrend.” Identity is serious, not something that one tries on. Respect, Respect, Respect As Bruce warns, do not do anything that would “border on gentrifying behavior.” It is paramount to recognize that billions of people acquire everything secondhand out of necessity.Thrift shopping should never be treated as a bandwagon to jump on, a source of ironic entertainment for you and your friends, or something alternative to brag about on social media. Enjoy the aspect of novelty that may come with your first NYC thrifting trip, but please shop with intention, refrain from making too much noise, and be considerate of everyone else in the store. Our generation has grown up buying into a fashion industry that manufactures clothing with a season-long lifespan in mind for the sake of keeping consumers on their toes. Instead, let’s embrace the idea that clothes should experience multiple life cycles in our closets and beyond. Giving clothes another life by secondhand shopping just might be a powerful instrument for social and global change.
director Anisa Tavangar photographer Kevin Chu makeup Francesca Levethan makeup assistant Jamie Sutton styling assistant Sydney Okolo model Evan de Lara clothing from student closets.
kick game writer Annabella Correa-Maynard
Like so many other facets of the fashion industry, sneakers have established their presence on multiple different platforms over the decades. The sneaker culture that exists today in some way repudiates the one that was once monopolized by hiphop, rap and skater subcultures of the last few decades. History has repeated itself by way of sneakersâ€”classics such as the Adidas Stan Smith (1965), Puma Suede (1968), Adidas Superstar (1969),Vans Era Checkerboard (1976), and Nike Air Force I (1982) consistently revive their status as sneaker behemoths. But the changing way in which consumers wear these staple silhouettes suggests an evolving dynamic. The emergence of hip-hop culture in the late 1970s reconceptualized sneakers from strictly athletic, predominately basketball shoes, to more all-purpose wearability. This transition can be traced to the hip-hop artists who wore Pumas and Adidas to jump on stage and in daily life. Consumers started adding their own spins to the classic silhouettes with customizations like fat lacesâ€”a process of reworking
shoe laces by extending and then starching the laces so that it expands—that made sneaker culture more participatory. And since the other key pieces in the hip-hop uniform included track suits and maximalist jewelry, streamlined sneakers were the perfect accessory to bring an outfit to equilibrium. The mid-1980s marked a pivotal occasion that would reshape sneaker culture for a modern audience. In 1984, Nike manufactured the first pair of Air Jordan Is for then-rising basketball star Michael Jordan but citing the NBA’s rules on uniforms, Jordan was banned from wearing the colorway on the court in October 1984. Nike’s television ads for the Jordan I capitalized on the controversy with the tag line “Fortunately, the NBA can’t stop you from wearing them.” Ban or no ban, Michael Jordan continued to sport his personal pair—now tinged with rarity and non-conformity—and pushed Nike to the forefront of the sneaker industry. From the late 1980s to early 1990s, the rise of the skate scene added another relationship between sneakers and niche athletic communities. Like basketball players, skaters initially prioritized athletic functionality. But instead of leaning towards Nikes, the skate community favored relaxed but durable models with gum-sole grip and reinforced stitching such as the Vans Era Checkerboard (1976) and DC Pure SE. By representing these popular brands, skaters ultimately helped sneakers cross cultural boundaries on their way to mainstream appeal. In 1986, RUN DMC released their song “My Adidas!”; this homage to their favorite sneaker brand soon yielded a collaboration. That same year, rapper LL Cool J hooked up with sneaker brand TROOP to release a line. Indeed, one signifiers of a growing sneaker culture was the influx of celebrity endorsements and collaborations. Today’s sneakers, instead of a utilitarian chioce, signify style and status. Sneakerheads collect coveted brands and models for show, lest a scuff decrease their market value for resell. Now two sneaker markets exist: one that revitalizes classics at a reasonable price, and another, privatized versions by upscale designer brands like Balenciaga, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton. Even collaborations are growing more priceexclusive: in 2015, the highly-anticipated partnership between Adidas and rapper Kanye West debuted a limited run of the Yeezy 750 Boost light brown colorway at $350 a pair, a stark contrast in price from the celebrated Air Jordan I’s $65 price point. Both Yeezy and Jordan illustrate that the marketization of a shoe is often more dependent on the hype than any functional intention. Aside from feeding into the fervent appetite of careful collectors and impressionable hypebeasts alike, sneakers have been the site of political statements. During their iconic demonstration on the medal stand at the 1968 Summer Olympics, track and field athletes Tommie Smith and John Carlos took off their Puma sneakers to reveal black socks that represented mass poverty in the African-American community. In 2015, Dwayne Wade created a special edition pair for his line that had “Black Lives Matter” etched on the back. Thus, designers and buyers have capitalized on the cultural attitude toward sneakers to make salient political statements. Regardless of the appropriation and controversy that might seem to undermine the history of sneaker culture, the shoes still remain a beloved choice for all who want to stay at the pulse of the times stylistically and politically.
flor palida director Fatima Burgos, Alexis Ifill photographer Sabine Jean-Batiste makeup Fatima Burgos assistant Kaeli Streeter models Arman Azad, Karen Reyes, Camille Ward clothing Alexis Ifill, Doriane van Overeem
the bigger the hoops... writer Darinelle Merced-Calderon
As I put on a pair of hoop earrings for the first time this summer, my mind flooded with memories from my childhood in Puerto Rico—images of women of color from poor barrios standing on street corners buying pan sobao with their gracefully untamed pelo malo and their bold hoops glimmering in the daylight. Just as my mother had once mourned my hair’s natural transformation from stick straight to uncontrollable waves, I knew she would disapprove of my recent choice to trade my simple post studs for hoops the size of a quarter. As I tried to admire my earrings, I saw all the judgments of promiscuity and poverty that the communities and media around me had perpetuated about women of color. This cultural ethos taught me prejudices that I have subconsciously harbored since my childhood—the very same ones my mother worked tirelessly to shield my sisters and me from through her own refined sartorial selections. In my eyes, my mami was always the paragon of strength: a single mother raising three girls after a tumultuous divorce that left her trapped in rural Florida, a sea away from her family in Puerto Rico. However, to eyes other than my own, these identities made her the embodiment of weakness. I saw it every time I sheepishly translated her Spanish or broken English into “proper” grammar when at grocery stores, parent-teacher conferences, and medical appointments. My mother took notice of the connotations stylistic choices could emanate—she too remembered her childhood in Puerto Rico. Her conservatively chic, white-passing outward presentation partly mitigated the adversity inherent to her intersectional identities as a low-income, divorced Puerto Rican woman. Her signature stud earrings were more than just a stylistic preference; they afforded her a respect and legitimacy that I always appreciated. She used her studs to emphasize a boundary between the woman people assumed she was when they heard the brass of her broken English and the woman she needed to be for the sake of her daughters. The media I consumed during my formative years reinforced my mother’s fears by exclusively portraying hoops on women of color like Beyoncé, Rihanna, and Jennifer Lopez. My communities in Florida and Puerto Rico taught me that unabashed sensuality was these women’s fatal flaw, and that I should shun their powerful promiscuity and uplift religious modesty instead. I subconsciously and negatively associated their hoops with their bold dance moves, provocative nudity, and occasionally vulgar lyrics. It would take years for me to move past indoctrinated judgments that rang with the tenor of promiscuity and a need to capture the male gaze—judgments which unfairly categorized these women as putas and hoes—to understand their performance choices as deliberate, courageous attacks on the patriarchy by celebration of the female body. In my early years, these pop culture icons symbolized what I could not be; today, they empower the woman I can and want to be.
Now, as an Ivy League student living in New York City, I do not have to fear the labels my mother dreaded would be imposed upon her and her daughters if we were to accessorize ourselves in a certain way. Here, my white-passing complexion and impeccable English do not reveal my Puerto Rican identity. The hoops I wear— now twice the size of my first pair—no longer invite any assumptions about me, no matter how true those identity labels might be. Instead, my most immediate community identifications are derived from my enrollment in a reputable institution and residence in a bustling metropolitan city.These labels provide me with boundless room for experimentation, free from shame. Therein lies the trap of respectability politics. Were I to leave this bubble, wherein membership of the educational elite often eclipses prejudices that would otherwise be salient, my hoops would become threats to my legitimacy as a professional, an intellectual, and a woman. I would suddenly be labeled as una de esas cafres—one of those ghetto women. Though hoops appear to be experiencing a resurgence in fashion’s mainstream, look closely and it becomes clear that celebrities and Instagram models often still exist within racial and socioeconomic safety nets that do not protect less-privileged women from being judged for wearing the same accessory. We should not feel guilty every time we safely put on our hoops, but we should remember that fashion choices have normative power, as well as underlying meanings and origin stories that often get lost in the cyclical nature of trends. While I support the reinterpretation of hoops, I cannot shake off all the implications they still carry.The communities of my childhood tarnished the innocence of a simple accessory by projecting onto them prejudices based in racism, elitism, patriarchal hypersexualizing, and other gender roles. While reclaiming our hoops, we must ensure that we do not pass these same judgements and be vocal whenever we witness others imposing negative connotations. Our hoops must catalyze not only reinterpretación, but also resistencia. Ultimately, we must reinterpret identity labels themselves. People who are labeled as “low-income” or who are at the intersection of negatively connoted groups should not be made to feel ashamed of themselves. Erasing the negative connotations identities carry based on antiquated views is the first step to breaking the cycle of oppression society reinforces vis-à-vis accessorizing and attire. The next time you put on hoops, remember these connotations; remember what a privilege it is to be able to wear whatever you want, whenever you want. And for those whose marginalized identities have not been made more palatable by privilege, for those who still combat these prejudices in their daily lives, I am your ally.
directors Darinelle Merced-Caldaron, Paloma Raines photographer Jasmine Weber makeup Hifza Shaukat assistants Courtney DeVita, Simmone Shah, Taya Voronko models Crystal Espinoza, Dahiana PeĂąa jewelry Faeber Studio, Kokorico Jewelry clothing Ajaie Alaie
Created by undergraduate students at Columbia University in New York City. Featuring Reina Rebelde, Outdoor Voices, Bode, Doriane van Overee...
Published on Dec 13, 2017
Created by undergraduate students at Columbia University in New York City. Featuring Reina Rebelde, Outdoor Voices, Bode, Doriane van Overee...