Boston style under the microscope

Publié par le 1 avril 2013

After a short trip to Boston, La Passerelle studies the fashion sense of this smart city. With its 50 colleges and universities, Boston lives to the rhythm of students, teachers and numerous visitors.

Kirsta Casey and David Kavaler are photographers running the Boston Street Style blog. Being fans of popular street style sites (The Sartorialist, Refinery29 and Street Peeper among others), the duo observed a blatant void: no one was talking about Boston street style. Taking it upon themselves to fix this problem, they created Boston Street Style in 2012, documenting the style of the city’s inhabitants.

“Boston sometimes gets a bad fashion rep because there are so many students, » says Krista. « We actually feel the opposite: students experiment a lot with fashion, which makes it interesting. That’s what we’re always looking for: someone who stands out, who is unique no matter the trend or style.”

Pictures from Boston Street Style

Krista and David are generally more drawn towards vintage, young and casual looks. That’s what you’ll find on their site, but there is also a very luxurious aspect to Boston fashion. Newbury Street, which they scour frequently to snap pictures, is home to many luxury retailers.  There, Cartier, Valentino, Giorgio Armani, Ralph Lauren, Marc Jacobs, Diane Von Furstenberg, Marc Jacobs and Vera Wang stand side by side. In a way, Newbury Street is the Fifth Avenue or Rodeo Drive of Boston.

Window displays on Newbury Street: Diane Von Furstenberg and Valentino

Jay Calderin, instructor at Boston’s School of Fashion Design and founder of Boston Fashion Week, sees nothing surprising in that duality. “The market here is not just the locals,” he points out. “There are very wealthy parents from local, national and international students who attend all the schools.” Tuitions fees for one year at Harvard run as high as $40,000.

According to Calderin, this variety of consumers means that the city is a kind of fashion lab. “There’s definitely an audience with good taste, people who are willing to test things out. It brings designers to think: How far can I push this?”

Daniela Corte is one of these designers. Blending her Argentinian roots with her education at Boston’s School of Fashion Design, her collections are anything but conservative, a label often attached to Boston. Known for her swimsuits (many of which appeared in the pages of Sports Illustrated magazine) and her leggings (which are equally popular in Los Angeles and in Miami), she works her Latin influences in her designs. “My goal is to bring sexy back to Boston,” she says.

Daniela Corte swimwear

The area is also known for a more demure look. As featured on her blog So Anthro, Emily Geaman is inspired by the classic nautical style of New England. Her personal style is influenced by Boston, but also by places outside the city like The Cape, Nantucket and the Vineyard. She has a soft spot for blue, white and red, stripes, polka dots, anchors and boat ropes. [For more nautical inspiration, visit this Pinterest moodboard.]

Emily Geaman, pictures from her blog So Anthro

All in all, fashion is not necessarily unique in any particular city. “Whether you’re into goth or couture, you’ll find it everywhere,” chimes in Jay Calderin. In the end, it’s the people under the clothes (and the ones who make them), who make fashion into what is it. “That’s the difference between fashion and style,” assesses David Kavaler. “Fashion is the clothes and style is what do you with them.”

Don’t miss our next articles about Boston fashion: the industry and our shopping recommendations.

Accommodation for this trip was sponsored by WIMDU, an apartment rental online service with more than 150,000 offers from all over the world.

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  1. [...] the industry’s difficulties: how to export, appreciate and showcase local fashion? After a trip to Boston (a city sometimes deemed similar to Montreal), we set to find out what was alike and what was [...]

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