Shilpa is a fashionista and digital creator who’s based in Seattle. She loves sustainable and upcycled clothing as well as neutral and comfortable street style which she believes has a lot more commercial appeal. Since she’s a big supporter of sustainable fashion, lately, she’s almost exclusively been shopping on thrifting platforms. She feels that it’s a great way to find mid-range designer items for a massive discount while also being environmentally conscious. StarCentral Magazine recently caught up with Shilpa to discuss her journey in the fashion world and here’s what went down:
Where do you usually shop? Are there any hidden gems when it comes to snapping up some awesome designer clothes?
Lately, I’ve almost exclusively been shopping on thrifting platforms like ThredUp and Poshmark. It is actually a really great way to find mid-range designer items for a huge discount while also being environmentally conscious! I always say my secret to online thrifting is just straight up do some online shopping on actual brand websites (my favourites are revolve and American eagle). Once you find something you like, do a search for them on second-hand thrifting websites and sometimes you’ll get super lucky and find the exact item. Sometimes you don’t but might stumble upon something similar.
What are your top tips when it comes to fashion for the cooler months?
I love oversized things, so some of my favorite ways to stay fashionable and warm are to wear oversized coats and sweatshirts as dresses with some tights and over-the-knee boots. You can really layer on some thick socks for some hidden added warmth. I also am a huge sweatpants fan so I love wearing leggings under a matching sweatsuit to keep extra toasty. I’m so glad matching sweatsuits are sort of back in.
Where do you look for creative inspiration?
Instagram is definitely a big inspiration when it comes to my fashion. I love mixing and matching prints and I think seeing my favorite Instagrammers work patterns made me a lot more comfortable and confident in rocking them.
Is it hard to stay fashionable?
It’s funny because I actually am always more fashionable when I stay in. Like if I’m hosting a small gathering in my apartment, I dress to the nines and really play around with my look, but the moment I have to step outside into the real world, all I can bring myself to wear are sweats. I think it’s totally okay to put comfort over fashion so I try not to be too hard on myself. It’s okay to pick and choose when you want to be fashionable.
How do you walk the line between being unique and having commercial appeal?
For me, I think I have an in-built balance because of my need to be comfortable (laughs). I love neutral and comfy street style which has a lot more commercial appeal and tend to wear that out the most often, just because it’s so easy to put together. For events and parties, I like to play it up and do some pattern mixing and sometimes I even like to indo-westernize my outfits. For my Instagram, I think it’s a lot more fun to play with your outfits because I think it makes photos so much more interesting. It is also a lot easier to get away with “weirder” fashion choices in photos because you can angle yourself however you want and only have to be in it for a few minutes (laughs).
Are there any key trends you’ve seen for this year?
I’ve seen a lot of pastels and as I’ve mentioned previously, patterns! I think the neutral street style is kind of timeless and will always sort of be there, but I am so here for the more whimsical trends. I also see that a lot of 90s style is coming back which I absolutely love. In the 90s, I was in elementary school mostly so I never got to really experience all the fashion trends that the 90s high school kid got to experience, so I’m glad I get to do that now!
What do you think about the state of fashion today?
I think it’s become really expressive and a lot less judgemental than it used to be. People are really starting to care for the environment more which is making thrifting super popular and trendy now. When I was growing up, it was never really a thing people did that often. I love the uprising of more sustainable and upcycled clothing. Designers are always finding such cool ways to repurpose fabrics and make completely unique pieces.
What are the clothes we can rid our wardrobes of that are considered very ‘last season’?
This is a tricky question for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve definitely been there when it comes to fast fashion brands mass producing super trendy items that won’t last, but I think now it’s more about how can you repurpose what you’ve grown out of rather than what can you toss because it doesn’t seem conventionally trendy anymore. I think trends should always be followed loosely and if you still like something…keep wearing it even if it’s not the “it” thing anymore. I’ve actually kept so many once-trendy things in a suitcase and recently went back to it after years and re-fell in love with so many of my old clothing items.
What fashion advice would you give an emerging fashionista?
Fashion is something so personal and subjective. If you feel comfortable and confident in it, wear it! It took me so long to understand this and I’m still actually working on not caring too much about what others think of my style.
The fashion industry has changed so much in the past few years, what’s the best advice you would give for staying ahead of the curve?
Keep experimenting. Trends are never cool until all of a sudden they are. If you like something, keep doing you and who knows, it might become the next look of the season. But even if it doesn’t, who cares!