MINT STANFORD UNIVERSITY
STYLE & CULTURE
photo by Binhong Lin
LETTER FROM THE EDITORS Welcome (back) to MINT! Thank you to all of our directors, writers, photographers, and designers– we’re thrilled to have been able to work with such a wonderful and passionate team this quarter. This issue comes at a time shaken by change and uncertainty, but we hope you’ll find fortitude in the resilience of communities we’ve featured within these pages. What we choose to wear, and why, can be a powerful statement that deserves to be documented. Our Regalia is Our Strength is a spread written and modeled by Native students on campus, It’s All About Nigeria sits down with Stanford’s Nigerian Student Association to talk about the rise of Nigerian couture in the global fashion scene and its cultural implications, and Guilty Parties focuses on a Stanford student-run clothing brand and the politics of fashion. We explore minimalism through fashion, interior design, and makeup in 100 Items or Less and Minimalist Makeup. Girlpower punches through with Women Who Rock in music, an interview with female co-founder of LA film and fashion brand Co, and an examination of Badass Women’s fashion in television. We delve into questions of identity and selfhood in relation to fashion with College Taught Me Fashion, Love Letter to Fashion, and Myspace. Finally, we visualize trends with Rise of Streetwear, Denim Daze, and Slip Slip Hooray. We hope these pieces, and all of the others in this issue, bring about a multiplicity of perspectives and facilitate dialogue. Please enjoy this issue, we’ve certainly enjoyed creating it! Always, Ashley Overbeek, Becky Aydin, Divine Edem MINT Editors-in-Chief
Ashley Overbeek 4
EDITORS-IN-CHIEF ashley OVERBEEK divine EDEM becky AYDIN ART & DESIGN DIRECTOR nicolette GRABIEC ART & DESIGN EDITOR phoebe YAO MANAGING DIRECTOR rebecca AYDIN WRITING DIRECTOR divine EDEM PHOTOGRAPHY DIRECTOR sydney MAPLES COPY EDITORS carly OLSZEWSKI anna-marie SPRENGER MODELING DIRECTOR iman FLOYD-CARROLL WEB DIRECTOR anika MOHINDRA DESIGNERS taylor SIHAVONG eva HOFFMAN hillary HERMAWAN talia FLORES victoria DING SOCIAL MEDIA DIRECTOR erin ENGLAND FINANCIAL OFFICER olivia GREGORY SPONSORSHIPS lena TARHUNI
IN THIS ISSUE
denim daze 8 our regalia is our strength 18 women who rock 26 100 items or less 28 college taught me fashion 34 a conversation with stephanie danan of co 36 thanks society, i can dress myself 40 badass women in television 42 minimalist makeup 48 the rise of streetwear 50 love letter to fashion 54 itâ€™s all about nigeria 58 guilty parties 66 myspace 70 the plagiarism tales 74 slip, slip, hooray 76
photo by Binhong Lin
NIM photographed by Sydney Maples modeled by Hamzeh Daoud Chineye Ogbonnah Katherine Yang
STRENGTH Artist’s Statement, by Mia Ritter-Whittle I am a Hasinai, Lenape, Irish and Jewish student here majoring in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, with a concentration in Identity, Diversity, and Aesthetics. In all the work I do, I hope to support Indigenous communities and peoples, with a focus on two-spirit people and women. Inspired by the work and words of Liz Medicine Crow, this project seeks to expand binaries. In the colonial world, binaries are assumed to be set in stone. Within this framework, we see Indigenous peoples as having to balance two worlds. One can be represented by college life: modern, academic, cement. Another can be represented by regalia: traditional, spiritual, communal. The truth is, from my personal understandings, many Native
communities have always worked beyond--without--binaries. We are traditional, modern, spiritual, and academic all at once. This doesn’t mean that our Indigenous selves don’t stand in contrast to the Stanford world, because for many of us, they often do. I wanted to highlight contrasts but defy binaries. I wanted to show in these contrasts, we are strong, gorgeous, joyful, and defiant. I wanted to show that our regalia is not fashion, it is our traditional, sacred, practice and should be respected as such. Lastly, I wanted to show solidarity and respect to a woman I know of, who is wearing her regalia every day to school to raise awareness for missing and murdered Indigenous women all across Turtle Island.
When I wear my dress I feel strong. I feel the strength of my ancestors, my community, and my family and in that moment I feel powerful. -Constance, Eastern Band of Cherokee
NATIVE WOMEN’S LETTER Written by Chasity Salvador, Acoma Pueblo. Edited by Mia Ritter-Whittle, Hasinai and Lenape This piece is written and edited from the perspective of two Native women. We are a vastly diverse population of people from many different tribes and traditions, and though we do have certain sacred commonalities, our experiences should not be lumped together. None of us can speak for the entire Native community, but we hope to do each and every member justice in our words.
ur regalia is not “fashion.” It is a way to express our most radiant yet sensitive feelings - each crest is folded warmth of our grandmothers’ firmness.
In the event that I find myself putting on my moccasins, my grandmother is always present. In fact, the only way I learned how to put on my moccasins was, and continues to be, by her teaching. I can hear her now, humming words to a song that asks for guidance in how to dress accurately and in good heartedness. I can hear her now, translating Keresan words into English as they spill into each wrap. Most of these words she repeats from memories that she has of her mother tightening when she underwent this process at my age. Repetition of memory. Of process. This is what our traditional regalia is. To wear this regalia means to embody one more than ourselves. When we wear our regalia, we are saying that we accept a journey, one that means taking on our sisters or taking on our grandmothers: taking on someone who we aspire to be more like every single day. The cultures that run in deep in each of us place value on our sisters. They place value on female instincts and the female voice, centered in appreciation and respect. When we wear our belts, we are wrapping sacred and secretive knowledge for generations to come. The knowledge that I can share is that we are teaching our daughters, our sons, and their children how to love one another--how to put others before themselves.
Wearing my dootlizh (turquoise) is a symbol of protection offering guidance through daily life and a way of presenting myself as a Diné (Navajo) woman to the world, for the Holy People have blessed me with this amazing life full of vitality and love. - Emily, Navajo
Sometimes our regalia is a sacrifice. When we put together a traditional outfit, we stay awake into the early hours of the morning gathering materials, piecing colors representative of the occasion, and coordinating if they need to match with the outfits of others Sometimes our regalia is a statement. An embodiment larger than ourselves. It is a statement saying that we respect ourselves, those who came before us, and those who will come after us. Our regalia is courage. Our regalia means embodying an identity that has long been taken advantage of. It means taking on an identity that people have attempted to raid for entertainment, that people have tried to twist, manipulate, and hurt, in order to feed their own selfish desires. Our regalia is honor. It means unconditional love for who we are as indigenous women. It’s not a costume, or something that we wear for entertainment. The next time you think about dressing up as a “sexy Indian,” think about the energy that we put into our authentic regalia. Think about what each of these costumes takes away from us as they make a joke out of what we view as sacred. These costumes are made to mimic what society has painted us as. These ugly stereotypes perpetuate the assault and murder of our communities. Unconditional and innocent love. Our love for each other is assaulted when we see these costumes. And for that, our rage is heavy and loud. Our rage is for our families.
My traditional dress means the world to me. It is a chance for me to celebrate the aloha and resilience of my community. I dressed in pa’u attire to connect to the strong horse and paniolo (cowboy) culture of Hawai’i. This attire is worn now in parades and other celebrations, commemorating the 19th century tradition of ali’i wahine (female leaders) to dress up to ride on formal occasions. Our traditional attire emphasizes the beauty of the natural world: we adorn ourselves with the flowers, leaves, and shells given by the land and sea. It is a way for myself to reconnect myself to the earth that surrounds me through my own lei making and harvesting practices. I dressed in green attire and lei to celebrate the island of Moloka’i, the birthplace of my grandfather.
-Gina, Kānaka Maoli
But, it’s how radiant our dresses, our ribbons, our jingles, our wraps, our mantas, our leis look when we stand together that keep us light and strong. It’s how beautiful we look laughing in our regalia, defying all the forces that are still fighting to bring us down, that carries me into sweet, sweet vitality. We represent love with each layer. When we wear our dresses, when we tie our hair in tight threads of red and white showing the peace and protection in us, we represent peace and dignity. We signify the strength in our grandmothers who have given us life’s greatest gift: to be who we distinctly are. Our regalia is ourselves. Our family. Our communities. Our love. Our strength.
My traditional wear is a connection. It is what links today to our ancestors and allows them to live again. In that sense, my traditional wear is more then just dance wear for a powwow or old garb for ceremonies. It is carrying on the old ways. -Lena, Yurok and Pyramid Lake Paiute
By Emily Koufakis, Egith Van Dinther, Salina Yara Halabi, Eleni Kallas, Juliette Weiss
With soon-worthy style and enchanting melodies, the women of music have defied gender barriers and pushed the female empowerment movement - all while creating a power-packed soundtrack for our lives.
he story of female artists in the music industry is one filled with captivated audiences and legions of inspired fans. Women have undisputedly made an impact across every musical genre, and some even argue that certain females have defined musical eras. Try thinking about the 80’s and not associating it with one of Madonna’s anthems or iconic fashion statements. Female artists have made their mark by giving a voice to generations that have felt disconnected and unrepresented in society. With women regularly headlining the world’s most coveted musical stages, it’s hard to believe that today’s woman is still battling with gender equality issues within the workplace, in education, and even at home. Known to push boundaries, female artists have never been shy to question stereotypes and did so while making (and breaking) records in the music world. From Diana Ross and the Supremes becoming the first U.S. group in 1965 to ever have five songs in a row reach number one, to Adele being the first woman to have three top-10 singles on the Billboard’s Hot 100 simultaneously - there’s no doubting that women are musical powerhouses. However, even with Taylor Swift repeatedly sweeping the Grammy Awards and Beyonce’s sell-out stadium tours, there are still moments that make one question if the music industry overlooks the significance of women – particularly women from the past who brilliantly rocked on our stereo speakers. Last October, a nostalgic-rich festival took place with a star-studded line-up of rock royalty from the past. The much-anticipated Desert Trip, dubbed “Oldchella,” swept through Indio, California and did so without any female presence in the line-up. The festival featured Bob Dillon, The Who, The Rolling Stones, Paul McCartney, Neil Young, and Roger Waters; however, the sell-out crowds that attended the weekend festivities felt the void of female performances. When an LA Times journalist asked festival goers what they would change about the first-time event many noted that they hoped to see more of their favourite women vocalists take the stage. Not much of a surprise, considering the festival world is familiar territory for female artists - Janis Joplin famously took the stage at Woodstock in 1969, and today’s biggest festivals, including Coachella and Glastonbury, are filled with the likes of Lana Del Ray and Adele. Not only is the festival world paying homage to male driven music, but the art and fashion world seem to be as well. This May, the V&A is launching The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains, which celebrates the musical journey of the all-male band. Pink Floyd rose to popularity through the 60’s,
Trying to find a female rock shirt, like Blondie or Joan Jett, amidst The Rolling Stones and Guns & Roses stamped attire is practically impossible. a time that also saw numerous women in the spotlight. The rise in the popularity of the ‘vintage’ concert tees in the fashion world has lead to the influx of band t-shirts in almost every High Street shop. Trying to find a female rock shirt, like Blondie or Joan Jett, amidst The Rolling Stones and Guns & Roses stamped attire is practically impossible. The lack of representation may just be a coincidence, but what is definite is that women were dominating the airwaves and influencing a generation just as much as their male counterparts. The music industry is filled with inspirational women making powerful statements, like continuing to successfully front male bands. Look no further than Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine who has had the rock world entranced with her unique and hypnotizing sound since 2009, and even Gwen Stefani who defined female punk-rock in the mid 90’s with her band No Doubt. The of-the-moment Scottish band, CHVRCHES, who excels with Lauren Mayberry on lead vocals, is yet another example of the success of a female taking the lead. Their band continues to pick up rave reviews from industry critics, and makes us wonder if there is anything more true to heroine fashion than a female fronting a male band? Well actually, there might be. Perhaps, a female headlining a show that has over 100 million viewers, with over 50% of those viewers being male is what shatters the question of female equality in music. The Super Bowl half-time show, a beloved American sporting event with an all male cast, has Lady Gaga taking the stage this February. Her new album, Joanne, which debuted at number one on the Billboard charts, is the fourth number one album for the pop sensation. She is one of only five females to ever snatch a sought-after solo gig for the Super Bowl. Interestingly enough, three of the last five half time show headliners were female - an inspiring trend that shows girl power is a force to be reckoned with.
Written by Arianna Lombard Photographed by Iman Floyd-Carroll Modeled by Phoebe Yao
100 ITEMS OR LESS 28
Crisp white homes with smooth black accents and banana leaves in the corners. No bed frames, no knick-knacks. Bare walls and sunlight dancing on empty wooden floors. Minimalism. As an aesthetic trend, minimalism has steadily gained popularity in mainstream culture. It is clean, simple, and elegant. It subverts consumerist culture by rejecting attachment to material items. Those that participate only own what is essential to living, nothing more. Some even go as far as only owning 100 items in totalâ€”that includes clothing, furniture, technology and sentimental items. At the heart of minimalism is the idea of commitment. Those who chose to undergo a stripping away of unnecessary bulk in their lives are committing to an ideal. They have turned away materiality in order to live in some higher plane of pleasures and morality, under the mindset that it is not what they possess that brings joy or meaning to their lives, but what they do with their lives. Though a noble notion that is hard to disagree with, thereâ€™s still something missing. If they reject the material, what are they committing to?
Historically, minimalism, amongst those who chose to live such a lifestyle, was a rejection of the physical world and a commitment to spirituality and peace. Most major eastern and western religious figures were known to have few possessions in order to focus on matters of a spiritual dimension. A simple Google search of minimalism and religion will bring up the names of Siddhārta Guatama, Confucius, Ghandi, Mohammad, Jesus and Moses—all figures who have preached about the insignificance of the material items of the world, how they are distractions from true peace, love, and understanding. They encouraged their followers to turn away from a consumerist culture and to focus on God, Nirvana, Jannah, etc. Those who did became known as monks and nuns. The practice of a simple lifestyle came to be described as monastic and monkish. In other words, it became a way of life saved for the devout few. As time went on, minimalism gained popularity in art, and now in aesthetics. Yet, once again, there’s something missing from this discussion. What about those that didn’t have the choice to live a simple lifestyle? Since the invention of currency, there have been those that have had to live without. Men, women, and children have tried to survive with less possessions than monks. They also live with only the bare necessities, but in their case, they didn’t reject consumerist culture—consumerist culture rejected them. Where do the homeless and the impoverished fit into this aesthetic movement? Minimalist blogs and YouTube channels romanticize the idea of being able to carry everything you own in a backpack, and minimalist Tumblr pages share photos of wide empty lofts while there are people sitting on the street right outside. Both live a stripped down life, yet one side is respected and fawned over as beautiful and moral, while the other side is treated despicably as if they weren’t human beings. Minimalism as an aesthetic lifestyle comes from a place of privilege. It is only for those who have items to reject. It is only for those who can still find shelter and food. It is only for those who look beautiful and have money. How can we challenge this dichotomy? Those privileged enough to be able to reject consumerist culture can do so in a way that also subverts consumerist culture to help those in need. A conscious minimalist can help push against socio-economic structures and consumerism by redistributing wealth and opportunity. A minimalist lifestyle can bear purpose beyond aesthetic pleasure. Being conscientious about the systems that allow a minimalist aesthetic to exist can help a minimalist stand for for something more than blindly committing against materialism.
COLLEGE TAUGHT ME FASHION Written by Avani Singh Photographed by Divine Edem Modeled by Wint Thazin, Raveen Kumarasinghe
rowing up, we all went through the basic stages of life. We started in the “anything you do/wear is cute” baby years. Then, we dove headfirst into the “ugly duckling years,” aka the preteens, and thankfully transitioned to the “wait you’re actually, like, not bad looking,” aka the “thank the lord for puberty” teenage years. Now, we are settled
into the college years, aka the “I will wear my pj’s to class and I will own them.” As a little girl, I was a lanky kid and a perfectionist to say the least. I would spend hours in front of the mirror, straightening my hair out as flat as possible. I never wore anything that I thought was even remotely “uncool,” and I always tried to blend in. As I grew older, not much changed. I shortened my school uniform skirt when the cool girls did it, cut bangs, and started applying kajal on my eyes. Despite my uneven tan lines, my colorful braces, and my “fashionable” glasses, I made sure to look just like the other girls my age did. This went on all the way through high school. Fashion trends changed, and I changed with them. That is until college, when a change in scenery reset my perspective. In college, I was different. No matter what I wore, I would always be different. This I was not used to. I wanted to hide. I wanted not to be noticed. But alas, when I came out of my room I was noticed immediately. When I tried to contribute to a conversation in a group, I was noticed. When I wore my crazy Indian pants, I was noticed. I struggled with my own identity for a long time. Freshman year, I tried my best not to be around people unless absolutely necessary. I spent a lot of my time doing schoolwork and Skyping my friends and family back home. Finally, good sense prevailed and I realized I was wrong. Not wrong about being different, but wrong about those around me. I realized that everyone was, in fact, different in their own way. We were all aboard a boat that had successfully sailed past the land of high school and into a place that was a little bit closer to the real world. We just had to deal with it in our own way. I decided to deal with it by taking pride in myself for being different. Now, I was glad to be noticed. I wore my crazy pants to class. I owned my accent and repeated words multiple times in order to be understood until I didn’t need to anymore. I overdressed when I felt like it and showed up in my sweats when I didn’t. My chunky accessories were now a topic of conversation rather than an oddity. I even joined a sorority, much to the astonishment of everyone back home. College taught me to be myself – to grow into a confident person who is comfortable in her own skin. College taught me not to spend hours in front of the mirror trying to look like every other girl in the room. College taught me fashion; a fashion that is by you, for you, and about you. College taught me a fashion that no magazine or movie ever did.
A CONVERSATION with Stephanie Danan of Co
Co is a womenswear brand with its hands in both fashion and film under the direction of co-founders Stephanie Danan and Justin Kern. Neiman Marcus has been collaborating with Co to integrate the LA brand into its department stores. MINT sat down with Danan as Co’s showcase of its resort collection at Neiman Marcus’s Palo Alto location. This is an episode of an ongoing series of MINT interviews at Neiman Marcus.
MINT: What was your background before your got started in fashion? Well I actually started in the movie business. I made movies for twenty years in Hollywood before I transitioned into fashion. I did have some fashion experience because my family was in it and so I sort of knew it quite well. My partner and I started to do a small collection in 2011 and we made a film to go along with the collection, and then it was seen online by a lot of people and the stores started calling us so that how we started.
MINT: That’s very interesting because a lot of people talk about large fashion houses and how they set trends and maintain a monopoly on fashion and what the people and stores buy. But it sounds like you came up in a grassroots, avant--garde kind of way. Do you see your method as a trend or are you an anomaly? I just think this idea that there is only one way to get to something is not true. There are so many different ways to get to where you want to go. In terms of fashion, art, or film, a good story is a good story. If you prefer to tell
Two models for Co at Neiman Marcus in Palo Alto that story through screen play or a collection or a painting, it’s all really the same thing. You are trying to get to an emotional experience. MINT: That’s really interesting. Since you made a film that was disseminated online, how do you feel like the role of technology as far as marketing has been incorporated in fashion today? What is really changed is in terms of speed and how people are definitely wanting the new quicker than ever, so that puts a lot of pressure on fashion and it definitely changed the landscape in that way. That’s why we try to create classic pieces which have nothing to do with the trends. Timeless. MINT: Based on your background working in films, how do you see that inspiration in your clothes or how you define the line?
In terms of films I studied drama, and I studied a dramatic story so I think that there is a bit of that in our clothes for sure…there is a dramatic impact whether it’s a sleeve or an embellishment. But we’re staying quite simple and trying to stand for the experience as well. MINT: I really like your idea of everything having to tell a story. For someone who works in publishing, we always try to incorporate that as well. Do you think you could tell me first a story about any challenges you faced at the beginning of the company? We started in our living room. We had no money. We basically lived and breathed our work. We gave 100% of ourselves into the experience and it was quite challenging and we had toiled really, really hard to get to a place where we were able to show the collection to the store and deliver on time and the whole process of the cycle of fashion is very challenging. It was definitely hard and there was a learning curve for sure.
MINT: Was there any time you felt like giving up? I don’t think so, not yet! MINT: Could you talk about one of your pieces that conveys some type of story? This dress (worn by the model the left on the previous page ) actually is my favorite of the collection. This collection was shot at Marlene Dietrich’s home in Los Angeles which was never shot in before. She spent a lot of time, and a lot of archival photography was shot, in that house, and it was for me very reminiscent of that era of old Hollywood glamour. MINT: This piece is really beautiful. Can you tell me more about it as far as the process and what it contains? I fell in love with the fabric and I wanted to use this flowing, velvety fabric to create a silhouette that’s easy to wear. I talk a lot about it being a perfect hostess dress when you have people over for dinner and that you are dressed up but not overly dressed because its flowing and causal in a way. I like this idea of incredibly rich fabrics but [I also] like a very easy, causal silhouette. MINT: I like this idea of perfect hostess dress, it makes me think that each of these pieces has a role… Yes, a character. MINT: Exactly. So what would be kind of overall vibe or character you are going for with your design? Femininity. The character is always feminine but she makes fun of herself and doesn’t take herself too seriously because we don’t like when fashion takes itself too seriously. She is generous. She knows who she is. She is strong and she leads a very busy life but she is also multicultured and loves movies and loves traveling and is not one dimensional. MINT: Looking toward the future, where do you see your company and your designs going? I’m aspiring to make women feel great about themselves, not necessarily through the clothes, but through the message of the brand and that the clothes are just an extension of who they are: individual with a lot of beauty and love, that emanates from within. And that the clothes are really there to serve that and nothing else.
Thanks society, Written by Avani Singh with collaboration from Erin England This summer, my best friend Erin visited me in India. We explored my hometown New Delhi, visited nearby cities like Jaipur and even attempted to hit up the gym all of 2 times! It was an amazing experience and an enlightening, cross-cultural exchange. What was meant to be purely a pleasure trip gave us both a lot of insights into cultural differences in modesty. I had reinforced the idea to Erin about dressing ‘appropriately” and I elaborated: ‘like Indian girls do’. Respectfully, she showed up day after day in jeans and a shirt that covered every inch of her body. But, when Erin decided to wear shorts on a blazing hot day to the gym, she was met with invasive and unwarranted stares from men as we walked down the street. Our conversations for the rest of the day invariably circled back to what the definition of ‘dressing conservatively’ is in India and in the U.S. At first, Erin expressed dismay for me having to live by someone else’s guidelines on how to dress. But through discussion, we realized the unconscious dress codes within her own culture as well. We all follow societal guidelines no matter where we live, but they are so ingrained within our minds that we think of them as our own. In the U.S., outfits showing midriff are usually only worn by young girls in a “going out” situation, and definitely would raise a few eyebrows and a disapproving glance or two if worn in certain places. However, in India, one of the most common types of dress is the sari, worn by women of all ages that shows portions of the midriff and back. When Erin first saw middle-aged women in India wearing this type of dress to a wedding, she was taken aback.
Why is it that showing off legs is a lot more scandalous than the showing of arms in India? Why is it the other way round in the US? Do we somehow feel safer if we avoid the gaze of men around us if we cover an extra limb? And most importantly, why does â€˜dressing conservativelyâ€™ even exist as a concept for women worldwide? We realized that the surface area of skin we exposed was not a personal choice, but determined by our surroundings. The backlash against dress codes are certainly on the rise in the United States, with many high school students protesting for the right to choose their own hemlines, and the viral #freethenipple campaign. How we dress reflects the society we live in, and at a deeper level, the minds and hearts of the people that form our society. What we wear is a huge expression of our sense of self. So what does it mean to be a woman in a world where our wardrobe is, to different extents, decided by social norms? It means an unclear
I can dress myself Illustrated by Armelle Coutant
BADASS WOMEN IN TELEVISION: The Styles of Olivia Pope and Annalise Keating Written by Mahalia Hunt Photographed by Talia Florea Modeled by Olivia Gregory
When you watch Scandal and How to Get Away With Murder for the first time, it is easy to be entranced by the two beautiful, strong, intelligent black female protagonists. Olivia Pope and Annalise Keating, portrayed by Kerry Washington and Viola Davis respectively, display immense strength in everything that they do in their worlds of politics and law. The two dynamic characters from Shondaland illustrate their confidence to the audience not only through their actions in each episode but also through their wardrobes. In nearly every episode of Scandal, Olivia Pope dons the commanding color of white, neutral tones, or a chic pantsuit. Her pantsuit gives her power and authority. When she walks into a room, Olivia immediately captures everyoneâ€™s attention because of who she is and because of her dominating style choices. When she wears a pantsuit, viewers know that the character means business and wants to be perceived as a strong and powerful woman. However, in other situations, she can be seen wearing neutral-toned sweaters and loungewear in the privacy of her own home and around individuals she feels most comfortable with. In these scenes, the audience knows that Olivia Pope is meant to be viewed under a softer lens. This part of her wardrobe reminds the audience that, despite how strong she displays herself in the matters of business, she too possesses a vulnerable side.
Olivia’s signature color is white. No matter which of the two options, soft sweaters or sharp pantsuits, the audience will at one point, catch her in a white ensemble. In the literary context, the color white generally symbolizes purity and innocence. This color choice is a commentary on Olivia’s character because she is at times forced into morally conflicting situations because of her job as a political crisis manager and the tumultuous political scene she in which she finds herself. Other staple colors of Pope’s wardrobe include deep navy blues and greys. The white and other soft colors interweaved throughout her wardrobe reflect the purity of the heart of her character. Annalise Keating’s style differs from Olivia Pope’s but follows some of the same themes. Annalise can be seen, when lecturing or working a case, in conservative dresses that reflect her professionalism. This criminal defense attorney and law professor rarely wears pants, but when she does, it strays away from the uniform of coordinating sets usually found in Pope’s wardrobe. Annalise’s dresses reflect her feminine and soft side while remaining professional and asserting her dominance over her students who also help on her cases. Annalise’s character comes off as more intense and daunting as Olivia’s. Therefore, the style choice of dresses rather than pantsuits really allows Annalise’s softer side to come through and for the audience to see her in a multidimensional light. As opposed to Olivia’s soft color scheme, Annalise wears medium tones ranging from greens to maroons to oranges and blues. These are not bright colors but definitely add a pop to her legal-style wardrobe. The addition of color adds another element to the harsh and sharp character of Annalise Keating and enhances her relatability and vulnerability. If she were to be dressed in all black, that would only add to her intensity. Shonda Rhimes creates intricate worlds in her shows How to Get Away with Murder and Scandal where she tests ethical and moral problems by putting her characters in questionable scenarios. Their moral compasses and style can not only be seen by their actions in each episode but also by their overall style. The dynamic styles of the two protagonists illustrate that exceptional women can have exceptional styles to match.
MINIMALIST A Look at Glossier & MILK Written by Mahalia Hunt Photographed by Iman Floyd-Carroll Modeled by Em Wilder
MAKEUP: Makeup focused on minimalist skincare is on the rise
as two brands explode what we envision what our daily makeup routines should be. Glossier and Milk Makeup are shining a spotlight on minimalist beauty in a world that is overcome with people who think more is more. “We’re laying the foundation for a beauty movement that celebrates real girls, in real life. Glossier is a new way of thinking about (and shopping for) beauty products. Because “beauty” should be fun, easy, imperfect, and personal. Above all, we believe that you give life to products--products don’t breathe life into you.” (From the Glossier website) Glossier is all about straight to the point products. Starting off as the beauty blog Into The Gloss and eventually being formulated into a full blown beauty brand by innovator Emily Weiss, Glossier believes in skincare as beauty. The company breaks down their products into phases. Phase 1 includes their Milky Jelly Cleanser, Priming Moisturizer, Balm Dotcom and Perfecting Skin Tint. This phase leaves skin feeling moisturized and looking marvelous. Glossier advertises that all you need is your fingertips and the natural products across your clean, beautiful face. But Glossier doesn’t only have skincare. Phase 2 consists of three different products: Generation G lip color, Stretch Concealer, and Boy Brow. With these three steps, your skin is concealed, lips are tinted, and brows are made bountiful. These three makeup products are perfect for the person who doesn’t want many bells-andwhistles in their beauty routine. “Driven by creativity and designed by industry insiders, Milk Makeup is inspired by our home; Milk. A cultural hub in NY and LA, that sits at the crossroads of fashion, music, photography, art and film. A place where trends are born and a platform for the next generation. Milk Makeup is fun, eco-conscious and cool. Our multifunctional, high-tech formulas are built for the girl on the go.” (From the MILK website) Milk Makeup, though still focused on minimalism and wholesome ingredients, has more “out there” products. The brand focuses less on sticking to just the basics and more on making products that combine regular maintenance and high function. Milk Makeup fixates on creating innovative products using pure ingredients and playful packaging.
Milk Makeup is known for their Milk Melt Technology, which includes a unique blend of coconut waxes. This technology can be found in the majority of their products, ranging from eyewear to lipsticks. It leaves a smooth texture on the skin’s surface by only using the fingertips in one, simple application. The brand dedicates itself to using the most natural ingredients possible, including fruit and vegetable butters, oils, and few preservatives. Milk has some intriguing products, starting with a holographic highlighting stick meant to leave your skin with a touch of silvery, rainbow sheen. The highlighting stick uses Milk Melt Technology as well and stands one of their best sellers; it is reviewed highly by powerhouse beauty influencers like Birchbox, a makeup subscription service with over one million subscribers. This product-infused with mango butter, peach nectar, and avocado oil-is intended to hydrate the skin. Next, the Weekend Lash Stain is perfect for those headed out for long adventure: this waterproof lash stain is supposed to last two days using Vitamin B5 to condition and keep lashes soft. Finally, Milk’s Eye Vinyl is a shadow in nude and black meant to add high shine to the lids for a glossy 90’s look. In a material world, it is refreshing to have brands that support bare bones beauty and skincare. Milk Makeup and Glossier are just the beginning of minimalist makeup trend.
pictured: glossier stage 1. photo courtesy of glossier.com
Written by Rachel Kang Modeled by Michelle Bae Photographed by An Nguyen with special thanks to Carlos Bustos
Interestingly, most of these images have nothing to do with the actual clothing. Instead, we associate a certain mindset or attitude with the streetwear aesthetic. This is what distinguishes them from traditional designer brands. Rather than selling a highend name on a label, streetwear brands seek to sell us their culture. They are a phenomenon that has uniquely arisen as a result of social media, which they use to build hype surrounding their collections and solidify their overall look. Those who eagerly await the drop of the new Yeezy sneakers or this season’s collection at Opening Ceremony are such avid fans that the line is usually sold out within minutes of the release. They buy the goods because what they really want is to buy a piece of the culture, and these
his friends, but nothing took off until Gosha was taken under the wing of Adrian Joffe, the president of streetwear giant Commes des Garçons. The fashion world soon took note of the raw energy and authenticity in his work, distinguished by his unique background and frequent incorporation of Soviet iconology. The streetwear look’s transition to the high fashion arena has been one of the most high-profile trends recently, mostly as a result of brands’ undeniable ability to consistently sell out collections at prices not much lower than that of establishment designer houses. Even if some of the fashion elite can continue to turn up their noses at streetwear de-
d r o w e h T ? on i h s a f r a e w t , s e y e a r d t e s s e s h i t t t lo a d Wha n u o r a n w ro h t s nd i ” a , r p a o e h w t p e i e h , r e t “s ur t l u c e t a k s f . so k e c g * a f m a i g g n n i i k v gi evo t o n f o e d u t i t t a l a r e n e the g brands are experts at carefully curating the image they project to the world about who you can be if you wear their clothes. Big-name streetwear brands such as Vetements or Commes des Garçons build hype towards each new season’s drop through social media, online stores, and collaborations with carefully chosen celebrities. However, make no mistake, such work should not be taken frivolously. In recent years, many streetwear brands have moved from small companies printing tees to creating shows for the same elite Fashion Weeks they were scorned by just a couple seasons ago. Stüssy grew from a small surfboard company to a powerhouse label with annual revenue of $50 million dollars. Another prominent example is Gosha Rubchinsky, the founder of his eponymous brand. In the beginning, Gosha was just a young photographer in Moscow with an eye for capturing the Moscow’s youth culture and skate scene in post-Soviet Russia. Like others, he grew his business making t-shirts for
sign, no one can deny their money-making power. As a result, established brands are seeking to cash in on the hype. Puma, a long time player in the world of athletic wear, recently named Rihanna as the creative director of their womenswwear line. The relationship between the two has been fruitful, with Puma having their first ever show during Paris Fashion Week. The Fenty x Puma show, described by Rihanna herself as “if Marie Antoinette went to the gym,” received positive reviews from fashion critics and elevated Puma to the level Adidas has been working at ever since their enormously successful work with Kanye West. Regardless of all their success, there remain many doubts about the longevity of creative vitality of many streetwear brands. The question that lies ahead for these labels in high fashion is this: can they sustain their fast-paced growth? Is this simply a trend that audiences will tire of eventually or does the rise of these labels symbolize a permanent change in taste? And from critics who find the designs one-dimensional, how many times can the t-shirt or hoodie be reinvented?
E V O L R N Y M TTE HIO S E L FA TO m Liu, d e r d a n mb vine E Hele o a L : Di ulty, n n r ria aphe McN A by togr Meg o Ph dels: Mo
I absolutely love Louboutins and Burberry Scarves, Alexander McQueen and Chanel, Gigi Hadid and Cara Delevingne. Every month I look forward to finding the newest issue of Vogue in my P.O. Box, thumbing through the glossy ads, and reading the fascinating articles. In my dream world, I’m the next Anna Wintour—but I also know that I’d never spend $675 on a pair of shoes or get invited to sit front row at an Oscar De La Renta FW show. I’ll probably never work at Vogue or meet Anna Wintour. The fashion world is extremely unattainable— yet I still love it. On several occasions, my friends have asked me why I read Vogue when I wouldn’t wear couture on a daily basis. The easy answer is that I like knowing what’s coming up in fashion. Even if many of the ads and stories featured seem outlandish, most of the time elements of these bold designs and stylistic choices will make an appearance in mainstream fashion. I always think of that scene in The Devil Wears Prada—you know the one where Andy, a new assistant to a fashion magazine’s editor-in-chief, admits that she doesn’t see the importance of fashion, and Miranda, said editor-in-chief portrayed by the divine Meryl Streep, says:
This… stuff’? Oh. OK. I see. You think this has nothing to do with you. You go to your closet and you select… I don’t know… that lumpy blue sweater, for instance, because you’re trying to tell the world that you take yourself too seriously to care about what you put on your back... However, that blue represents millions of dollars and countless jobs and it’s sort of comical how you think that you’ve made a choice that exempts you from the fashion industry when, in fact, you’re wearing the sweater that was selected for you by the people in this room from a pile of stuff. (The Devil Wears Prada, 2006)
Here, in this monologue, one understands that fashion is more than hemlines and fabrics. Fashion is a big part of our culture, even if you don’t care about it. The clothes people wear affect our judgements of how they identify themselves, what they do, and what they care about. Yes, at times this is taken to an extreme, and I am not suggesting that it’s okay to “judge a book by its cover”, but it is true that the stylistic choices we make about our fashion affects how we relate to each other. For instance, grunge fashion defined the ‘90s. People wore shapeless, stained sweatshirts with mid-calf flannel skirts and scuffed combat boots, all in the name of style. Grunge became a culture, with larger-than-life icons like Kurt Cobain and Kim Gordon. So even in counter-cultures against mainstream style, fashion becomes an identifying feature. It is something that we all make a conscious decision about. Even though most of what I look at is unattainable--like these subversive grunge styles--I still like to know what’s going on in the fashion world. The longer answer for why I love to keep up with fashion is that it’s aesthetically pleasing. Fashion is an art form in itself. There’s an artistry in how designers play with fabrics to construct shapes and hues to add dimension. I love seeing how stylists create looks that I never would have even imagined possible, or how a photographer and a model work together to create dynamic images that are so visually striking that you can’t help but stare, even though all they’re trying to do is sell you a product. From the quirky weirdness of Gucci’s 2016 spring/summer ad campaign, in which a bunch of androgynous models with bowl cuts clad in green suits hang around a 1970’s metro station with a peacock, to the lively Dolce & Gabbana ads packed with models ranging from 7 years old to 70 eating, talking, and taking selfies whilst wearing a mish-mash of patterns and colors, I find myself unable to look away. Fashion is wearable architecture, sculpture, painting, photography, graphic design— it’s wearable art. That’s why I care about the fashion industry, and that’s why I swoon over Birkin bags and Jimmy Choos. It’s too beautiful not to.
ITâ€™S ALL ABOUT NIGERIA By MINT
African fashion has catapulted itself to the ranks of fashion industry prominence. It has stamped its mark on the global fashion scene thanks to rising and influential African stars, such as the Kenyan Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o and the Nigerian musician Wizkid. Nigerian fashion has made consistent appearances over the past few years in well-regarded publications, from Vogue to the Huffington Post. The phenomenon of African fashion continues to prove its growth and prosperity to the rest of the industry. MINT sat down with the co-presidents of Stanford’s Nigerian Students’ Association (NAIJA), Chiamaka Agali ‘19 and Peace Edem ‘19, to capture their perspectives on the Nigerian fashion phenomenon and other significant parts of the culture.
How do you think Nigerian fashion has changed over the last decade? Although there is still great emphasis on traditional Nigerian attire, a lot of young Nigerians have recently been putting a modern twist on these traditional outfits utilizing these Aso Ebi and ankara materials. Now, it is very common to see many western styles of fashion emboldened by vibrant African prints. What would both of you say is the largest or most visible aspect of the intersection between Nigerian fashion and culture? Do you think the diversity of Nigerian culture is well-represented on Stanfordâ€™s campus? We would definitely say the entity of the Nigerian wedding. In typical Nigerian fashion, the bigger, the better! The same philosophy extends to Nigerian weddings. Here you are able to truly see the distinction in customs and traditions of the many tribes that make up Nigeria. Speaking of tribes, there are a lot of Nigerians on campus that hail from all parts of Nigeria, including Delta State and Akwa Ibom State. Itâ€™s interesting and fun to learn about the various groups represented. Despite our ethnic diversities and different interests and goals, we Nigerians remain proud, hardworking, and headstrong.
Since you mentioned the various tribes that run throughout the large nation of Nigeria, can you discuss how beauty norms vary from tribe to tribe? The various cultures of Nigeria have different definitions of beauty. For some itâ€™s being plump, for others a [tooth] gap is a sign of beauty, and oftentimes skin color (unfortunately) is tied to beauty. However, as the different ethnic groups become closer, modern fashion has evolved to include different ethnic identities. Modern fashion is no longer one ethnicityâ€™s to claim, but rather for all Nigerians. Despite this inclusive development in fashion, traditional, as its name explains, stays the same.
How do you feel about American fashion publications, such as Vogue, catching up with the scope of Nigerian fashion, trends, designers, and cultural influencers? I think itâ€™s wonderful that Nigerian fashion trends are starting to take their rightful places as dynamic, stunning elements of both the ready-to-wear and high fashion world. What is even more beautiful is to see young Nigerian woman and men bring the beauty of their ancestral lineage to the forefront of global attention. The only unfortunate consequence is the fact that some people might use the powerful celebration of traditional Nigerian culture as a chance to continue cultural appropriation, as we have seen with a number of high-profile fashion designers. Thanks to the members of the Nigerian Studentsâ€™ Association for modeling their beautiful traditional attire.
B Y S H A RY N L E E
In the wake of the results of the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election, a Stanford junior reflects on the snarky t-shirt she designed under the brand name “Guilty Parties” as farce regarding the now president-elect.
began this shirt design as a comedy, a satire, a political joke. I remember sitting in a comfortable cubicle in an air-conditioned building with the privilege of a Silicon Valley internship and thinking, “There’s no way.” I moved pixels and drew shapes, chose colors and fonts with the intention that this campaign would only last three months, and at the end of the time would revel in the novelty. If that. Last night, the joke unraveled into an actual political statement, an expression of discontent, a mark of angered fervor. In this moment, I am hyper-aware of the sensation artists have after they’ve created a piece - the sense that you have to regard it independent - that the audience now dictates the interpretation. I just did not ever fathom that this interpretation was even possible. Now, I sit on a futon in a university dorm surrounded by friends who have felt their American identity stripped from them. In this position, it is more than pixels and shapes and colors and fonts. I am aware of the privilege I have been enabled by hard-working, loving immigrant parents, the privilege to have been shaped by friends who have challenged me and -- importantly -- corrected me, the privilege to express my thoughts -- standing by the democracy imagined by the founding fathers, not a pig with privileges he refuses to admit and only exploits. Elijah Williams and I have sold clean out of the original order of Tuck Frump shirts. We quite literally have no shi(r)ts to give.
MODELS: Elijah Williams, Catherine Goetze, Ruqayya Toorawa, Alicia Menendez, Allan Ndovu
“ MY ” SPACE “My name is Erin England (no I’m not from England sadly, but I did live there for a few years) and I’m a junior double majoring in Energy Resources Engineering and Chinese. I am the social media director of MINT Magazine, a fun and passionate community to be a part of. I draw a lot of inspiration from the space around me. This year, I’m living in Outdoor House, and it’s such a welcoming, positive source of energy with good vibes.” - Erin
Check out the rest of Erin’s cool space and unique style perspective on mintmag. stanford.edu
THE PLAGIARISM TALES by Divine Edem
t is safe to assume that college students understand the consequences of getting caught plagiarizing. Whether the work came from their best friend or from an “esteemed” scholar online, unearthed plagiarism demonstrates a violation of the Honor Code and implies a university judicial trial that can ultimately result in punishment as severe as expulsion. But what happens when plagiarism is removed from the context of an educational institution and is placed into the cutthroat jungle of the fast-fashion retail industry? Fast-fashion retailing giants, such as Zara and Forever 21, have been consistently pushed into the limelight for plagiarizing their collections from indie fashion designers. Within the past six months, Zara has been accused by more than 40 artists—ranging from LA illustrator and designer Tuesday Bassen, to CFDA Vogue Fashion Fund winner Aurora James—of stealing designs for their seasonal collections. These artists, along with many other indie designers, called for the boycott of the global retailer in order to invoke repercussions for Zara’s blatant plagiarism. However, despite the countless lawsuits and clear inauthenticity in the company’s periodic collections, the retailer still enjoys success in the form of its $15.9 billion revenue and an average monthly online viewership of 96 million consumers. The media relishes in the drama but soon finds new smoke and moves along. The independent artist starves from legal fees while the mainstream corporation revels in money trees. This flagrant disregard for the feelings and credibility of the original art creators reflects the sufferings that these emerging cre-
atives endure in the sphere of the monopolies of fast-fashion corporations. It is already difficult enough for designers to successfully make their mark in an ever-changing industry like fashion, as seen on television shows like Project Runway. Independent fashion designers pour their blood, sweat, and tears into original collections in hopes of catching the eye of someone who can make their dreams of “making it” come true. So, first watching helplessly as a corporation takes credit for fashion pieces they created, and then being apathetically brushed aside because of one’s “lack of status” within the fashion industry together reign as the most damning of experiences for designers. Social media constitutes a powerful ally in the independent designers’ fight—not only to seek recognition for their ripped off designs, but also to spread awareness concerning this emergence and staying power of plagiarism amongst the fast-fashion elite. Bassen has been one of Zara’s most vocal victims, sharing her unfortunate experience with the corporation through her popular Instagram page and informing her followers of ways they can help in the cause. She and her indie designer friends collaborate by continuing to take legal action and sharing their stories on Instagram and Tumblr. Before entering the real world, students are taught that being successful in this world is to be “you and your original self.” Achieving authenticity leaves no room for plagiarism. Although plagiarism in the fashion industry stands as nothing new, the inattention of fast-fashion corporations towards originality speaks volumes about an industry supposedly always looking for raw talent.
Satin, lace, and straps: slips are all the rage this season photographed by Sydney Maples modeled by Anna-Marie Sprenger Hope Schmalzried
M MINT MAGAZINE Cover Photo by Iman Floyd-Carroll
Make-up by Kenzie Roan
Modeled by Chineye Ogbonnah
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