We go through different phases in life of wanting to conform and dying to be different. As a teenager, I remember thinking that I had my own amazing sense of style, only to look back at pics and realize my group of friends had a very distinct uniform - a tragic, Disney-sponsored-skate-park-by-day-rave-by-night uniform. It's really hard to describe, and I won't torture you with the pics, but it basically consisted of mini skirts or dresses, tiny logo tees (my monster truck tee was my fave), over-the-knee socks and Converse or Gazelles. Occasionally we wore our Little Mermaid backpacks, but they were way too small to hold anything other than a few tubes of LipSmackers so we usually just carried them on empty. For the record, there were no soothers. Whether we knew it at the time or not, wearing this uniform made us part of a club, made us look like a team, made us feel like we belonged.
As you grow up, you reach a point where the last thing you want to do is look like everyone else. Some people get tattoos, others chop their hair, but however we decide to define ourselves, we take action to stand out. We want to be noticed and respected, and while we don't always feel in control of our lives, there is always fashion to help us make our mark. Sure, we might look back to regret the fashion choices we've made (let's just forget my Spice Girl sneakers in 2001, please), but every fashion phase we endure comes to define us in some way.
For Spring 2017, I'm feeling a serious backlash to all the sameness. Blame it on all the black-and-white athleisure that's dominated our Instagram feeds for so long, or a general revolt against all things Trump, but my fave trends for the new season are meant to celebrate those things that make us different. Statement sleeves are right on point but the statement you make with them is up to you. Oversized earrings are in but when it comes to which earrings you rock, there really are no rules. Stripes have come back, as they do every spring, but this time they have loads of personality, just like you. And since we've all gotten tired of bags that don't fit your wallet and shoes that you can't walk in, accessories are more practical than we've seen in ages, letting you do your thing without ever letting your outfit get in the way.
Check out some of my own personal picks for Spring '17. Happy shopping!