Smithie on the Street: Olivia McClendon Shows Off Her Style

Photo by Mia Council '16 | Olivia McClendon '14, dressed for winter.

Photo by Mia Council ’16 | Olivia McClendon ’14, dressed for winter.


Mia Council ’16
Features Editor

MC: What are you wearing and why are you wearing it?

Olivia McClendon: I am wearing a black peacoat, a velour button-up and the reason why I’m wearing it is 1) for comfort, 2) for warmth, 3) for quality, 4) – I feel ridiculous, I’m being so obnoxious. (Laughs) I’m wearing thrifted items cause thrifty is cheap but chic.

MC: It’s winter.

OM: Yes!  I’m wearing black Timberland boots because 1) I like black and 2) it reminds me of my neighborhood, Harlem.  Tims all day are very Harlem.  Harlem all day.  And they’re good for autumn, transitioning into winter.

MC: Are you changing your style as it gets colder?

OM: I wouldn’t say my style changes per se, but layering definitely increases.  Winter’s my favorite.  I hate summer.  I hate winter, and I love being able to wear layered outfits.  It’s like every layer is a different outfit.  Take your coat off, and you have a button-up.  Take that off and you have a T-shirt.  It’s fun.  And I choose my color palettes on how I’m feeling, and today I felt like a warrior so I wore black.  And my first class of the day is Intro to Black Culture.

MC: Who are your inspirations?

OM: I look at a lot of GQ. GQ is my thing.  I really like suits as well.  I worked in men’s suits for like three months at Macy’s. I just like peacoats and button-ups and anything sharp.  I like the way Leonardo DiCaprio dresses.  I like the way Kanye dresses with the exception of his man skirts.

MC: And cardigans.

OM: I don’t like the way he wraps flannels around his waist.  I don’t like that at all.

MC: Why is your hair the way that it is?

OM: My hair is annoying me, which is why I have a crazy hat collection right now.  I’m not able to get a haircut in Northampton cause that doesn’t exist here for me.  I only have one barber at home that I trust.  So I have a lot of skullies, also known as beanies, in different colors.

MC: Do you identify as a fashionable person?  What does being fashionable mean to you?

OM: I dress to express what I’m feeling.  I don’t really like the word fashionable because it sounds forced.  There’s something effortless about –

MC: Being well-dressed?

OM: Yeah, being well-dressed.  Just going out and having an eye for what’s comfortable.

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