Mindy Wu dresses warm and looks fashionable while doing it. A white shirt never looked so good when paired with this stylized newsboy hat, knitted sweater, lacy skirt, and thigh-high socks.
A young girl sits in front of the TV, eyes glued to the screen as an episode of What’s Wrong With Secretary Kim? plays. She is enamored by each character that appears on the screen, wearing the finest clothes. Soon after, her mother called her to get ready to go to the mall. As they wandered from store to store, all the girl could see were new clothes, near-infinite ideas of outfits forming in her mind. A new fashion star is born.
Sophomore Mindy Wu had first become actively interested in fashion in the seventh grade, when she began watching Korean dramas. However, the seeds had been planted long before, as her mother had taken her on shopping trips since early childhood. Wu’s mother soon became a strong influence on her interests, and fashion was no exception.
“Along with the frequent shopping trips, I got into fashion, specifically Korean and Japanese fashion,” Wu said. “Pretty soon, I started deciding what clothes to buy, rather than letting my mom choose everything for me. Then, I shopped for more clothes, and I became hooked on browsing for trendy clothes.”
Choosing an outfit is a process for Wu, one that takes time and careful thinking. Multiple variables can alter what outfit she might choose, and the process itself is carefully separated into a series of steps.
“First, I would consider what the weather would be like the next day,” Wu said. “Then, I would think about what I would be most excited to wear. If I don’t have something clear in mind, I would choose a top or bottom that I would be most confident in finding a complementary piece to pair with it. If I have no outfit ideas, I look for inspiration on Pinterest. The funny thing is that none of my favorite outfits were inspired by anything on Pinterest. So, Pinterest is really my last resort when it comes to planning my outfits.”
Wu does not only appreciate clothing for its looks. She believes that the clothes a person wears can offer a glance into their personality. Wu uses the clothes she wears as a means of expressing herself.
“To express myself, I use clothes because I am not always in the mood to express myself through words,” Wu said. “On days when I feel more stressed out than usual, I wear simpler outfits with no vivid colors as an attempt to calm myself down.”
Wu’s interest in fashion has helped her grow immensely. It has helped boost her confidence and made her feel like she can express herself with freedom. While she does not currently have any plans to explore a career in fashion, her admiration for the art form will never end. To Wu, fashion has no rules and no bounds.