Thursday, April 3, 2014


My grandma being awesome and hot is that weird to say I'm over it ps her skin still looks that good, and later: American Apparel jacket; Topshop tank and boots; BDG denim

We tease my maternal grandmother -- all 4 feet and 11 inches of her Japanese bad self -- because she only ever wears neutral colors.  Lots of cream on that lady.  Khaki pants, taupe cardigan, white shirt, hair pulled back neatly and pinned on either side.  On Easter she has been known to break out a yellow sweater to the collective exaggerated shock of everybody else at brunch.  I have heard stories about the fur coats and staggeringly high heels of her youth, but in my mind I can only paint her with the same colors tract home contractors pick for walls: Swiss Coffee, Ashen Tan, Bone, Linen, Silver Fox.

It has become increasingly clear that this woman, besides definitely contributing to our genetic makeup, is one of my and my sister's major style icons.  With each passing year, our closets become less and less vibrant in color, my sister's erring on the side of endless beige and mine a sea of black on black on black.  Sometimes when we're both home, we get dressed to go out for dinner and emerge from our respective rooms to find that we --- all three of us, my mom included --- are in skinny black pants, a sandy colored knit, and boots.  And then we're like nooooo not agaaaaaiinnnn and fight about who has to change.

I'm not on board with normcore as a thing predominantly because I do not think it is real.  Whether you define the "movement" as dressing like the plainest version of yourself  or carefully cultivating a lackluster style sense, I think giving a name to jeans-tee-and-sneaks is a lame effort to justify outfitting yourself in a way that feels comfortable and safe.  Which like, is not a thing that needs justification.  It is just allowed. You can wear basics and not feel bad; you can wear basics and not have to be subscribing to something. Ok? You don't always have to be killin it!  I don't know.

I think maybe a better implementation of the term would be to use it to define what our style sense would look like (which might be decidedly unstylish) without outside influence.  If the world was trend-less, fad-less, cool-less, what would you put on your body?  Impossible to know, certainly, but fun to close your eyes in a dark room and try to guess.  My conclusion is this: if that were true, my normcore would be dressing like my grandma after years of finding it adorable and aged of her: black and all of its diluted hue children, head to booted toe.

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