Living in New York has brought many changes in my life – and I always share in my videos or my posts the lessons that I learned with this adventure that is living abroad. I think it is impossible to remain immune to change – living abroad will somehow cause a change on you. In addition to a new way of looking at several things – friendship, language barrier, family – living in New York caused a change – radical, I would say – in my style. I have a friend who is always telling me how my style has changed and is more suited to the city’s lifestyle, and, on other day, another friend commented about the colors I’ve been using and she suggested that I write about it.
And it was not a surprise to hear them saying these things: I noticed how I changed every time that I let go some item from my closet. Clothes that were part of my closet and now I can not see this “new” Laura using these same clothes. I thought about it for a long time and today I decided to share with you that my new style and show a little bit of this change. You will see that I changed a lot – at least I think so – and I believe that this happened because of three factors. First, moving to New York – I’ve done a lot of adjusts in relation to the weather and lifestyle – that claims for more comfort. Second, the free and funky atmosphere of the city, where people do not judge you and you are free to wear whatever you want. Third, for my development as a person – provided by this change of life and the arrival of 30 years.
I’ve never have been a “look of the day” blogger, but, as my blog was focused on fashion and beauty at the beginning – I have a blog since 2010 – I tried this tag so famous some times and shared several looks through this years. I also posted many looks of the day in the first year here in New York. One thing very clear in my style in Brazil was the use of high heels. I have 1m59cm height – I’m short and licensed to use very high heels. Peep toes, platforms, no matter: my eyes glistened with windows full of shoes. Even the most basic shoes for day to day had a heel. Flats, sneakers? Waste of money! Why would I spend some money on a flat if, with the same amount, I could buy a high heel? Peep toes were my favorites: I had one of each color – pink, purple, green, nude, black, floral…
Another thing very present in my style were the warm colors and prints, most of them floral. I was the crazy for floral, animal print, pink. My clothes always had one girlie footprint, delicate, feminine. More was more! I liked to mix animal print with bright colors, I was not afraid to use patterned or brightly colored pants and I loved improve the look with a lot of accessories. Of course in some of these pictures I had an even greater concern to do something “out of the ordinary,” after all, I was publishing the outfits on my blog and wanted it, somehow, to influence someone. I was also a fan of big bags for a long time – now, I dread! Now, looking at these outfits, I am not ashamed. They were part of a phase of my life, a stage where I felt good wearing these clothes. It was my style, so I’ll be fighting with the past? Now, I can look at each of these outfits and think how I would wear the same outfit today, and which elements I would keep and what I would trade.
Now that you have had an idea about “old” Laura, let’s see how I am today!
The first major change in my style started with the shoes. As I mentioned above, I loved high heels, but New York is a city where everything is done walking or using the subway. We don’t have a car, so, we do everything here on subway, bus and legs! As you can imagine, you can not walk around in high heels, right? As I arrived here in the winter, I didn’t have a lot of problems: fortunately, there are many models of comfortable boots and even some with high heels. In the summer, it becomes more difficult: you can not bear to walk so long in a high sandal, even platforms. The foot is swollen, creates bubbles. I had to find other options. I don’t like flats, they tight my fingers. Flat sandals can be good, but not all are comfortable. This summer, I discovered a passion: sneaker. My faithful partner has been white sneakers. And don’t think that you can not be stylish with sneakers. Just get some inspiration – I have a profile on Pinterest which several ideas. Today, even on hot days, I have preferred to use sneakers than flat sandals. The most interesting about my change is that, if previously I thought awful to built an outfit with no high heels, today I can see a thousand possibilities with sneakers!
Another very significant change in my style was related to the colors. When I studied at FIT in 2014 teachers emphasized the fact that New Yorkers use black a lot. I confess that until then I had not realized that. But I began to observe and I saw that it was the honest truth. I always liked black, I confess. And living here, I ended using more and more. Other sober and neutral colors also became part of my favorites. If before I never noticed gray pieces, for example, today they are among the first to call my attention. I love gray, I confess. What about the prints, now the stripes are the dominating print in my closet. Love love love! Buying a striped piece is never enough. I realize that, before, I had a concept in my head that only a powerful print could make an outfit stand out – now I see that I can put together a nice outfit with neutral pieces and spice up the look with details: handbag, shoes, glasses, earring. ..
In almost three years living here, I always ended up bringing shoes from Brazil – except sneakers. The boots also usually have a better cost-effective (80% of my boots from Brazil). As for the sandals, I always enjoyed the style of Brazilian sandals. I always ended up buying some wedges – to use and from time to time – and some flats. This summer, I discovered an UGG sandal – this white and gold up – and it was love at first sight. It is mega comfortable and, for the first time, now I can walk much using high heels in New York! It was a happy discovery and also a break of paradigms – if you told me a few years ago I would wear a sandal that style, I probably would call you crazy. Another sandal that is also completely out of my comfort zone was the last above. It is from Steve Madden, inspired by the famous Birkenstock – whose design is not famous for its beauty but for comfort. I confess, I always thought that these were horrible sandals. Now, I’m in love! They are modern and I think quite add personality to looks.
How many times we say that we’re hot gonna follow a trend or use a certain item?I bit my tongue. Starting with disco pants. I never thought they were ugly, but I always wondered: how people can wear pants so tight? One day, in Soho, I ge in an American Apparel store and I tried one The pants not only wear well and and are super comfortable. It is one of the pieces that I use most in the winter! Another item I never liked was oxford shoes. I ended up surrendering when I saw this burgundy model in an Aldo window.And what about Uniqlo jackets and other brands? I’ll be honest: I thought they look like garbage bags. “I will never wear a jacket like that!”. In the case of the Uniqlo model, gray, I went to San Francisco and use my friend’s one. It was love at first sight and now I have mine. What about the jacket below? It’s Calvin Klein and it’s all that I never imagined a winter coat – but it’s warm and protects me a lot! It was one of the best investments I ever made. And who knows the winter in New York knows that a jacket that keeps you warm and cuts the wind is precious…
Finally, sunglasses! I spent some years of my life investing in cheap sunglasses – even from the streets vendors, shame on me! And always the same style, classic, black or brown. I confess: I didn’t like mirrored sunglasses – I was to use, you know? Last year, I bought my Quay sunglasses – Australian brand I’ve written about here on the blog – and ready, it was an addiction – just stopped having bought four pairs! And they are all different: mirrored, colored, with large frames. I also received two models from Brazilian brand Carol Logan – and they are as I like, big and different. And believe me: a sunglass makes all the difference in the outfit!
I think now I am smarter to shop. If before I invested money in clothes that I didn’t use so many times, now I prefer to spend on key items , which I will use more and combine that with what I have in my closet. I have some clothes that will save me on special occasions, but as here in New York the cool style is predominant, I’m always on this vibe! I see many beautiful clothes in stores, for good prices – read: powerful dresses, skirts, blouses, etc. – but when I think that I will rarely have occasion to use them, I give up. And if by chance I need some different clothes for a fancier event, I know I have several options and shops to explore. My wardrobe is for today, not for “when I have a chance.”
Laura Peruchi is a Brazilian blogger, author, and entrepreneur. She has lived in Manhattan with her husband since 2014. Since then, she has shared on her blog varied content about the Big Apple. From travel tips, including unusual things to do, shopping tips, etiquette, restaurants, and a lot more, her blog has become a reference in Portuguese (also available in English) for anyone planning a trip to New York City.