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12 Outfits For A Dream Night Out From Briana King, Victoria Paris, Deto Black, & More

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12 Outfits For A Dream Night Out From Briana King, Victoria Paris, Deto Black, & More

After a year spent mostly at home and social distancing mandates slowly but surely being lifted, it’s no secret that we’re all more than ready for a big night out. Whether your plans include a weekend-long rager or dinner inside (!) that restaurant you’ve always been meaning to try, the rest of the year is bound to be filled with good times and even better memories.

With summer plans ahead, “re-emergence fashion” is totally a thing, and we’re redefining what it is that we’ll be wearing to go out — from party tops and baguette bags to dresses and heels to match. If there’s ever a time to truly go all out with your ‘fit, now is it. Don’t worry about all of the loungewear you’ve stocked up on for the past 14 months, those cozy pieces will always be there when you get home.

Below, we asked some of our favorite stylish creatives about their summer fashion aesthetic and to show off their best outfits for their dream night out. Whether it’s partying in Ibiza, dancing at a Reggaeton club, a low-key hang with friends, or a date with Robert Pattinson (you never know!), there’s plenty of inspiration for you to get dressed up.

Lil Ahenkan, TV Host, Author, DJ, and Podcaster

Bye Bambi top and bottoms, Reliquia Jewellery necklace, Christie Nicolaides earrings, Karen Walker sunglasses, Mannequin Hands nails.
“Bye Bambi is an incredible Australian ethical fashion label that I love because everything about it is high quality and stunning. The cut, fabric, and design are what my wardrobe has been needing. Also, as a plus-size person, it’s almost impossible to find cute sustainably made clothes, so this is a win.”
Photos Courtesy of Lil Ahenkan

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

I’m very much cosplaying ‘80s hair goth meets sexy retro-futuristic Matrix vibes. I’m subverting my norm of bright colors. The world is ending, let’s switch it up. Perhaps my outfit is a nod to our impending future of AI dominance and post-apocalyptic robot vibes. I’ve been watching too much of The 100.

What’s your dream night out for this look?

I can distinctly picture myself wearing this for a night of gentle debauchery with Robert Pattinson (when he realizes I exist and asks me out). We start at Din Tai Fung, because I’ve been craving their prawn fried rice and a night like this requires sustenance and stamina. Then we go and see a movie in 4DX because we love the drama of the big screen. We go for a stroll then end up at a rave with excessive smoke machines and laser lights. We talk, we indulge, we dance, we laugh, we share secrets, and by the end of the night, which is now very much the morning, I still look great.

Follow Lil Ahenkan on Instagram.

Sweaty, Creative Director and Co-Founder of Trippin

Poster Girl dress, ASOS shoes, Burberry bag. “When I saw the Poster Girl dress, I immediately thought of Ibiza.”Photo Courtesy of Kesang

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

Colorful. We’ve been inside too long. It’s time to come out and play!

What’s your dream night out for these looks?

The Ibiza blues are real! My dream night out would be catching a groove at Pikes and then heading down to my friend’s bar on this small beach near the top of the island where we would dance the night away. Then sit on the beach, shoes off, watching the sunrise.

Follow Kesang on Instagram.

Victoria Paris, TikToker

Aimé Leon Dore hat, Daydreamer LA, Studio Luu, vintage jean skirt. “This is a really great day-to-night summer outfit that you can dress up or down.”
Vintage Dolce & Gabbana top, Betsey Johnson jewelry. “If you couldn’t tell by now, I love outfits with a lot of candy. Candy means jewelry for me. And a cute white top is always the best canvas for a great stack of jewelry.”
The Good Wolf hat, Martha Calvo and Berna Peci jewelry, Alo Yoga bra, Jaded London tracksuit. “It’s super retro but has a fresh twist with the trucker hat trend and pop of color jewelry.”Photos Courtesy of Victoria Paris

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration this year?

Colorful, creative, and eclectic. I feel like every outfit I put together has no cohesion or connection to the one I wore prior. Fashion is experimentation and getting comfortable with the uncomfortable. I wear stuff all the time that I look back on and think, ‘Wow that was ugly.’ So honestly my aesthetic for the summer is really just going to be across the board. It’s fun to experiment and try out different looks, but I have been gravitating most towards bold patterns and bright colors.

What’s your dream night out for these looks?

All my outfits are ready for the unexpected. I hate making plans and I’m a very wherever-the-wind-blows kinda girl when it comes to going out. That’s why I love dressing bold and different because if you look like you don’t fit in anywhere, you always stand out no matter the dress code or event. When I was younger, I always felt like the odd one out or just different, like I could never fully fit in no matter what I wore or what I did. Now, I choose to embrace it through my style.

Follow Victoria Paris on TikTok, Instagram, and YouTube.

Isabella Lovestory, Singer and Self-Proclaimed Popstar Princess

Undercover Spring 2006 shirt, thrifted heels, thrifted belt.
“I turned this shirt into a mini dress and it reminds me of the feeling I got as a teenager reading NYLON back in 2009. My $5 thrifted stripper heels look exactly like Vivienne Westwood ‘90s platforms and make me feel like I’m in the manga Paradise Kiss. And, of course, my rhinestone butterfly belt fills me with excruciating joy.”
“I love this outfit because it makes me feel as light and precious as a butterfly, yet my heavy platform heels ground me as if they’re hooves. I want to run and fly at the same time.”Photos Courtesy of Isabella Lovestory

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

Extremely, ridiculously short mini dresses paired with very tall high heels. Digital cameras, ferris wheels, yellow butterflies, kaleidoscopes, NYLON Magazine in 2009, hot pink, cash, love, being a spy, and time travel.

What’s your dream night out for this look?

I’d wear this to a date with a hot bad boy with a motorcycle. On a summer day, we would be drinking CBD tequila iced matcha, making out on the ferris wheel for hours. Then we go to a Reggaeton club and he buys me super expensive cocktails. Dancing and dancing. Then we ride his motorcycle back to a five-star hotel and after-party on the rooftop with his hot model friends. And then I almost fall off the rooftop, but he saves me and we kiss in front of the city lights. Finally, I find a million dollars laying on the ground the morning after.

Follow Isabella Lovestory on Instagram and Spotify.

Deto Black, Rapper

I. Am. Gia. jacket, Motel Rocks top, Eytys trousers.
“I love this jacket so much. it’s giving me Lil’ Kim and Kimora Lee Simons Life In The Fab Lane. It still gets really cold at night in L.A., so I get to wear it out. I also like wearing little tops that are flattering for my shape and these trousers are my go-to because they look dressed up but are so comfortable.”Photos Courtesy of Deto Black

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

Right now I’m just feeling very BLACK, so I’ll probably be wearing a lot of it.

What’s your dream night out for this look?

I’d wear this out to a bar or restaurant with some outdoor seating with my closest friends.

Follow Deto Black on Instagram and Spotify.

Briana King, Skater and Model

Lisa Le Strange hat, Heaven by Marc Jacobs sweater vest, Stance socks, Air Jordan sneakers, Gucci watch, Karo Koru choker, Popular Jewelry necklaces, Kamoka pearl bracelet, Roses Metal Works rings, Tether septum ring.
“I waited all year to wear these white shoes. White shoes just hit different in the summer time. These Jordans are on the summer rotation.”
“I’ve always been a fan of the sweater vest but I always end up with some silly patterns because I usually had to thrift them. Heaven by Marc Jacobs came out with a solid-colored sweater vest and I had to cop. I’m excited to wear her all year long, too.”Photos Courtesy of Briana King

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

Grandma style is the inspo this summer. The grandmas in my life always pack on all the jewelry and I always thought it was so cute but didn’t want the attention of having all the jewels on, but now I couldn’t care less. I recently fell back in love with colors, specifically purple. It’s also my grandma’s favorite color and it just feels fitting to love something as much as I love her. All the colors. All the jewelry.

What’s your dream night out for this look?

I got these shorts for my daily bike rides, so I’m jumping on my ebike and strapping my skateboard onto the side of my bike and meeting up with my bike and skateboarding buddies on the way and going to Venice skatepark. The energy there is always so exciting and friendly. Every session at Venice always happens to turn into a shoot, so it’s the perfect place to wear my perfect outfit. Just gotta show up and have fun and I’ll always end up with some of my favorite photos with my favorite people.

After hours of skating the park, we’ll grab a coconut from our favorite fruit vendor and watch the sunset together. The ride home on an ebike is the best because we get to avoid traffic and we don’t have to pedal. We just sit and relax and yell silly jokes to each other on the busy streets of L.A.

Follow Briana King on Instagram. On Go Skateboarding Day, June 21, Display Only will be hosting a meetup for marginalized genders, including women, transmen, and nonbinary people, at Garvanza Skatepark in Los Angeles.

Mallory Merk, Musician

Hanes top, handmade corset, Basketcase custom Dickies, kitten heels from an L.A. dancer store, Fred Perry x Amy Winehouse bag.
“I love the outfit because it mixes streetwear elements with a more elegant touch that makes it a perfect ‘fit for a night out. I love accessorizing a white tee with jewelry that has been handed down to me, like I’m wearing a Cartier watch from my mom!”
Photos Courtesy of Mallory Merk

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

My summer aesthetic is linking up with true friends and being thankful for the life that we are given, and my summer fashion inspiration is a ‘70’s vibe, endless summer.

What’s your dream night out for this look?

This outfit would be ideal for a night out to Delilah or something more low-key where I’m surrounded by close friends and just having the ultimate vibes. I’d probably wear this outfit when I’m headed out from the studio and going to link up with some friends to chill. I’m not the biggest party girl, but if I’m at house party, you might catch me dancing in my Converse. When I’m with my friends, I’m always prepared for a wild ride and this ‘fit is 111-certified.

Follow Mallory Merk on Instagram and Spotify. Watch her latest music video “Sinister” on YouTube.

Amrit, DJ

Daily Paper suit. “A suit is my go-to because you can’t go wrong with it and there’s always something sexy about the masculinity of it.”
Thrifted vest and mini skirt. “I love a good thrift find. I get a lot of really great vintage vests and blazers from the men’s section at Goodwill.”
COS shirt and jeans. “This is a favorite look of mine because you can do so many different things to it — add a leopard mule with a gold hoop or a slicked-back ponytail and a fun lip.”Photos Courtesy of Amrit

What’s your summer aesthetic and inspiration?

Classic, functional, and relaxed. I love oversized tailoring, so most of my looks are always a play on that. A mini skirt with a vest or a loose one-button shirt with a baggy jean or pants. I always look towards leather and more fitted silhouettes for a sexier moment. I’m also realizing, as I look back at these outfits, that I have a very monochromatic approach with my looks!

What’s your dream night out for these looks?

I miss concerts! Seeing a really good live show — that’s definitely something I thought about a lot over quarantine. I prefer more of a dirty martini and late dinner or natural wine bar type night out that goes into a house party or jazz club as opposed to a nightclub vibe.

Follow Amrit on Instagram. Amrit hosts conversations on love, sex, and dating every Tuesday at 12 p.m. PST via Instagram Live, and every Thursday at 4 p.m. PST via “Unhinged” on the NTWRK app.

Fashion

The young designers shattering stereotypes around Indian fashion

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The young designers shattering stereotypes around Indian fashion

In a country of 1.3 billion, diversity in dress is a given. Still, perceptions of Indian fashion — both within and beyond the country’s borders — remain bound by stale visions of saris in blinding hues, traditional clothing and elephant, peacock and tiger motifs. These lazy assumptions are compounded by the fact that some of the largest players in the luxury fashion industry quietly contract thousands of the country’s artisans to embroider eyewateringly-expensive products in factories that fail to meet basic safety standards, as reported by GFN. And while outside of India, members of the diaspora such as Supriya Lele, Kaushik Velendra, Priya Ahluwalia, and Ashish Gupta are among the names known for helping to dismantle stereotypes attached to ‘Indian dress’, it’s time for the fashion world to acknowledge the young, India-based designers doing so, too.

These non-conformist minds deliberately refrain from dipping their feet into the nation’s lucrative $50 billion wedding market (in India nuptials are typically extravagant affairs spread over multiple days, and the quest for the perfect bridal outfit stokes high demand for full-time couturiers). By refusing to jump on the bandwagon and taking the path less trodden, the designers behind AKHL Studio, Bloni, Bodice and Aroka are consciously bypassing staid exoticist perceptions of India to celebrate how far we’ve come. Rooted in tradition but not restricted by it, their clothes are proudly ‘Made in India’ but globally relevant.

A model wearing a look by AKHL Studio

Image courtesy of AKHL Studio

A model wearing a look by AKHL Studio

Image courtesy of AKHL Studio

A model wearing a look by AKHL Studio

Image courtesy of AKHL Studio

AKHL Studio

“We need to stop turning our craft into clichés just because we feel like the West will lap it up”, is Akhil Nagpal’s immediate response when asked to explain the premise of his Delhi-based avant-garde label. At first glance, AKHL Studio’s iridescent, sculptural silhouettes may not seem like an average Indian fashion consumer’s cup of chai (tea), but that’s precisely the point – the CSM alum’s driving motivation is to rewrite the narrative of what the global fashion community expects from the country’s fashion designers; to “push the envelope with what can be achieved with the Indian hand”.

With its metallic tulle dresses spliced with vivid lurex tapes, gradient-dyed silk organza tops and robust bustiers embellished with hand-embroidered glass yarn fringes, AKHL Studio’s latest collection, ‘Reflektor’, embodies this vision. A clue for what makes the collection so appealing is right there in its title. “The key garments in this collection have first been handwoven on the loom and then interlaced with upcycled yarn to achieve interesting shapes. Some of the biodegradable materials used such as thermoplastic polyurethane are light-sensitive and thus the title Reflektor seemed apt”, Akhil reveals.

A model wearing a look by AKHL Studio

Image courtesy of AKHL Studio

The designer’s desire to create multidimensional pieces of wearable art was further consolidated by the support of his atelier, a group of weavers and artisans from villages across India, who shared a similar zeal for delivering the unexpected. “Our artisans can execute modern patterns and styles, however, it’s up to designers to push them in that direction and lead the way in contemporising Indian craft”, he says. What makes his practice yet more impressive is that he’s able to do that without succumbing to the “hamster wheel” of the seasonal fashion calendar. Instead, Akhil has opted to preserve the value of slow, ethical Indian craft which his tight-knit community cherishes. An important guiding principle for the designer is “creating something new and letting it find its people”, he notes.  It’s safe to say that AKHL Studio found theirs.

A model wearing a vinly outfit from Bloni

Image courtesy of Bloni

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Bloni

While boys his age spent their days playing gully (street) cricket and football, Akshat Bansal pored over yards and yards of intricately printed fabrics in the back of his father’s sari store. He wasn’t just a mesmerised kid in a sartorial candy shop, however. Instead, the interest in textiles he demonstrated back then was an indication of things to come.

After completing a formal fashion education at National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), Mumbai, before heading on to Central Saint Martins, he then landed a coveted apprenticeship at Cad & the Dandy on Savile Row. It was there that he received a year-long fastidious schooling in tailoring, learning to appreciate the importance of consistency, discipline and the accuracy of every stitch. Akshat then flew back to India only to realise the absence of homegrown brands catering to something other than the country’s booming wedding and occasion-wear market.

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And so, in Delhi in 2017, Bloni was born – a demi-couture brand that questions fashion’s norms through free-spirited storytelling and futuristic, genderless designs. “It’s all about cross-pollination and fluidity right now. Thanks to social media, we are all hybrids of sorts who aren’t limited by borders – our wardrobe needs to reflect that too,” Akshat says. A quick look at the brand’s previous collections – think jet black leather finished satin saris, flouncy skirts, fun tie-and-dye and cutout bodysuits made with nylon from ocean waste –is all it takes to confirm that.

If you’re after further proof of the brand’s sustainability credentials, step into Bloni’s flagship store in Delhi’s Dhan Mill compound. While you’ll find plenty of peppy clothing on the rails, these aren’t pieces you can pick up at whim. Be it their fluorescent tie-dye overcoats (hand-dyed by Akshat himself) or sequinned hoodie dresses, every garment is made-to-measure, and fitted to the body like a second skin. “I think the future of fashion comes down to this – if it’s more personal, it’s more sustainable,” he says. “If it feels special to you, then you want to cherish it regardless of the trend cycle.”

A model wearing an outfit by Bodice

Image courtesy of Bodice

A model wearing an outfit by Bodice

Image courtesy of Bodice

Bodice

“If I knew as much as I know today, there’s no chance I would have started Bodice back in 2011. It takes a certain naivety to plunge into a completely new space”, Delhi-based designer Ruchika Sachdeva admits. With the aim of challenging externally imposed distinctions between Indian and Western fashion, the London College of Fashion alum drew up the blueprint for her textile-driven contemporary label within a year of graduating. This line of thought may not be perceived as radical today, but it certainly was 10 years ago when Ruchika arrived back home to find a lack of options that celebrated India’s wealth of craftsmanship without succumbing to conventions of flamboyance, colours and bling galore.

Armed with enthusiasm for offering minimalist ensembles for the modern Indian woman, Ruchika built Bodice to highlight the nuances of Indian fashion that often get buried beneath all the glitz. “It might look pared down on the outside, but there’s so much going on inside – the seams, the cut and the fall need to come together perfectly so that a dress is tucked in just the right places and highlights a woman’s curves”, she says.

Just as crucial to Ruchika as the construction of her garments is minimising the environmental impact involved in making them and forming long-lasting relationships with artisans in different corners of the country. Bodice’s garments are made exclusively using locally procured natural fibres such as recycled cotton from Kolkata, silk and wool directly sourced from Bhutti weavers in the Kullu region of Himachal Pradesh, all in a bid to support India’s fibre producers. “Being in Delhi, the air you breathe is a constant reminder of the fact that you’ve got to be conscious and do your bit – if not now, then when?”, Ruchika says. Keeping in mind that India’s capital tops the list in having the worst air quality in the world and recently went into lockdown, not because of coronavirus, but because of the toxic smog that engulfed the city – it’s imperative for brands, now more than ever, to be mindful about the environment.

A model wearing an outfit by Bodice

Image courtesy of Bodice

Apart from having a strong focus on sustainability and versatility, there’s another defining feature of Bodice’s trans-seasonal apparel – pleats. Giving fluid silhouettes a “powerful” structure, she says, her yen for the technique was a reactionary result to her daily environment. “Being born and brought up in India, I’m used to an overload of sensory experiences; there’s a million things happening and it’s so chaotic. Sometimes I think my love for pleating stems as an innate response to that, almost like a need to streamline things and indulge in some sort of repetitive practice.”

Despite it being a time-consuming technique that requires mathematical precision, Ruchika relishes the challenge. What helps? Visualising the woman she designs for: “I like the fact that my customer is me – in her early 30s, independent and finally able to put her foot down. At Bodice, we are always striving to help this woman occupy space quietly but with a steadfast attitude. I believe that clothes are the first conversation you have with anybody without even opening your mouth; it’s a form of art that’s the closest to your body”, she says. Who knew pleats could be the new pillar of power-dressing?

A model wearing an outfit by Aroka

Image courtesy of Aroka

A model wearing an outfit by Aroka

Image courtesy of Aroka

A model wearing an outfit by Aroka

Image courtesy of Aroka

Aroka

Āroka’s (a Sanskrit word that translates to light shining through woven threads) debut collection of vibrant pieces interspersed with traditional silhouettes like the lehenga and sari played it safe and won hearts.  However, it wasn’t close to the paradigm shift that its co-founders Karan Ahuja and Shweta Aggarwal wanted to accomplish. The duo yearned to cut through the existing noise and experiment with Indian textiles to present them in a globally relevant light. Despite the looming risk of losing its existing customer base and entering uncharted territory, they decided to push ahead with a complete revamp of Āroka’s design philosophy in 2019.

“I enjoy challenging the usual use of local fabrics. For example, we have re-introduced handwoven muslin with ruching techniques to create slinky halter necks and crop tops. India is well-known for its khadi (handloom cotton), but I give it a textural treatment by incorporating raw, frayed edges”, says Shweta, an Instituto Marangoni graduate who is also Āroka’s creative director. The Mumbai-based label’s repository now consists of understated jewel-toned slip dresses, funky asymmetrical outerwear they tag as ‘half and half jackets’, sultry bandeau tops and easy-breezy kaftans that gained a cult following which continued to grow even during the pandemic.

A model wearing an outfit by Aroka

Image courtesy of Aroka

Shedding light on social issues that plague today’s society is the foundation upon which they built their proposal. Inducing conversations around sustainability, fair trade and mental health, where Āroka’s garments do all the talking, is pivotal to its DNA. Notice the subtle yet hopeful messaging embroidered onto the sleeves of its linen tops, belts and bomber jackets such as ‘This too shall pass’, ‘Still, I rise’, and ‘It’s okay to not be okay’.

When the nation was hit by a devastating second wave of the pandemic in April earlier this year, Āroka launched ‘Quote Your Price’, an initiative to recognize the unwavering efforts of its artisanal community. “Our karigars (artisans) can create something no one else can anywhere in the world. Yet, most of them are severely underpaid, exploited by middlemen and subjected to unethical working conditions – even more so during the pandemic. Through this initiative, we wanted consumers to become conscious of the handiwork and attention to detail our artisans pour into the making of each garment and then quote the amount they wished to pay for the same”, the duo explains. Proceeds from those sales were donated to Dastkar – a non-profit organization supporting Indian craftspeople.

Follow i-D on Instagram and TikTok for more fashion.

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Fashion

Ducks: the future of the fashion industry

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Ducks: the future of the fashion industry

A typical day in the life of UO sophomore Christopher Kiyota consists of checking his Instagram direct messages for new orders to his sneaker resale business, going through his inventory list and making a trip to the post office for new shipments — all between classes and study sessions. This is the ordinary routine of a young college business owner living out his dream with ambitions of taking his passion to new heights.

Running and managing a business is no easy feat as a full-time college student, but these four UO students have channeled their love for fashion into self-made brands and career ventures. They each hope to express their creativity and inspire others by making an impact on the world through their own fashion outlet.

The vintage connoisseur: Alexandra Webster

@approachvintage

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit and UO’s track season was cancelled, student athlete Alexandra Webster had a lot of free time on her hands. Already known by friends and family for her unique curation of vintage outfits, she started developing her skill for thrifting and personal styling.

“I started to get motivated because you don’t have anything else to do,” Webster said. “I started getting into fashion and clothing to try to keep myself busy.”

Noticing her newfound interest in fashion and thrifting, her mom suggested the idea of turning what was a quarantine hobby into a monetary opportunity by opening her own store. With thrifting rising in popularity amid the pandemic, Webster realized her knack for hand selecting thrifted items could become her own business that could help others with their style too.






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Alexa talks about how she eventually wants to bringing Approach Vintage online one day. Students with style: UO students discuss their fashion businesses and why they got started. (Ali Watson/Emerald)


She took the leap and opened up her own clothing store: Approach Vintage.

A resale store of unique vintage pieces and popular trendy items, Approach Vintage is located at The Woodlands Mall in her hometown of Houston, Texas, serving as a way to share her love of fashion with others. The store offers all kinds of original pieces, such as oversized jeans, bomber jackets, graphic tees, bucket hats and more. In the nearly two years since the start of her business, Webster has already seen massive success and growth, reaching six figures in sales within her first year of opening the store, she said.

Webster described how truly blessed she was to have that opportunity fall in her lap and be able to get her vintage store started right down the street from where she lived.

“People have been so supportive,” Webster said. “All my friends are always walking by, showing me when they’re at the store; they’ll take a photo and tell me that they’re there. It’s amazing.”

As a new small business owner, it can be difficult to promote your business and gain a wider customer base. Starting out, Approach Vintage was no exception to those challenges.

“The hardest thing was getting my name out there, because I’ve never really known what to do with marketing and promoting myself and a small business that just started out,” Webster said. “But once people started hearing about it, I saw that people love it, and they’re posting about it.”

In the future, Webster wants to expand her brand and branch out into other lines and chains under the same name, broadening her product line as well as her customer base. She plans to start Approach Athletics, a new business with a focus on athletic wear, in the near future.

“I like the idea of not being afraid to do something,” Webster said. “Life’s pretty short, so just do it.”

The ultimate sneaker plug: Christopher Kiyota

@whasiankicks

Christopher Kiyota started out with $180 in his pocket and one pair of used shoes to scrub, clean and resell. Then, one pair turned into two. With consistency, dedication and curiosity about the sneaker resale business, the UO sophomore built his business, WhasianKicks, from the ground up, figuring out how to run and manage a reselling business all on his own.

“I feel like for once I was able to get out of my comfort zone and challenge myself,” Kiyota said. “Growing up in San Diego, you don’t really see a lot of opportunities to grow as something different than just a student or an athlete.”






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Christopher built his successful business all on his own from the ground up. Students with style: UO students discuss their fashion businesses and why they got started. (Photo courtesy of Christopher Kiyota)


In the fashion world, nothing can quite compare to the competitive demand and almost religious reverence some people have for sneakers. Entrepreneurs like Kiyota have taken advantage of the thriving culture of sneaker reselling, which allows sneakerheads to make a profit from buying and reselling high-demand or rare sneakers.

With over 18,000 followers on Instagram, Kiyota has taken his love for sneakers to new heights by becoming an in-demand sneaker reseller and supplier in Eugene. Drawing in hundreds of customers per day through his social media, Kiyota said he has sold sneakers to countless customers, including fellow UO students and some major names and athletes as well, such as Deebo Samuel and Noah Beck.

His sneakers are kept in a storage unit where customers can set up a reservation to shop in person, but high customer demand can make it overwhelming to manage, he said.

“As it got bigger and bigger, it started to get harder to maintain these people,” Kiyota said. “When you’re getting 120 DM requests per day about shopping, you get so flooded.”

Kiyota plans to open a storefront for WhasianKicks in the downtown Eugene area by January so he can reach more people and provide better customer service.

“I want to have an optimistic influence on people and make sure I create an atmosphere surrounding my business of happiness and memories,” Kiyota said. “Just something along the lines of you’re going to remember it for years to come. It’s not going to be like you remember my name just because of the shoes I sold you, but you remember it because of how it made you feel.”

The bling buff: Emily Roberts

BlackCatsSparkle on etsy

Emily Roberts grew up in the tiny town of Big Bear, California, and spent most of her life there. She moved up to Oregon during the peak of the pandemic, which was a somewhat difficult experience, she said. She had a hard time finding a job in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic as well as making friends during a completely remote first year at the university. Soon enough, Roberts began making jewelry.

She decided to make some earrings with her friend one day for her birthday, and that friend was quick to suggest Roberts start her own Etsy shop with original jewelry pieces. Despite the immediate support for this potential small business venture, she was originally skeptical of the idea.






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Emily has been making artistic pieces since a young age. Students with style: UO students discuss their fashion businesses and why they got started.(Photo courtesy of Emily Roberts.)


“Slowly over time, my family and my friends here and everyone I knew were basically pressuring me to open an Etsy, and I was just like ‘It’s not going to do well guys,’” Roberts said. “But I opened it anyway, and it’s been doing better than I thought.”

Pursuing creative projects and making artsy pieces since she was young, the UO sophomore has used her artistic roots to create her own small business of handcrafted crystal jewelry. She primarily sells her pieces from her online shop on Etsy, BlackCatsSparkle, but also recently began setting up her own stand to sell her creations in person in Salem.

Crafting everything from earrings and bracelets to necklaces and even wreaths, she has seen success with her business in the UO community. She caters to students with fun crystal, skull and mushroom designs, keeps prices inexpensive and delivers to local customers. She has even reached beyond her Etsy shop and sold some of her pieces in the Halicuna Bay Mall in Salem, selling over $60 worth of products on her first day.

“I just really love seeing people wearing my product,” Roberts said. “I adore seeing people around campus and my friends wearing my stuff in their photos. It’s just really rewarding and makes me really happy.”

Her goal is to inspire students and all people to shop locally and from small businesses, a more sustainable, cheaper option that supports good people with good causes.

“If I can make jewelry forever as like a secondary job, that would be fantastic,” Roberts said. “It’s really nice to have that creative outlet; it’s something I can see myself doing for a long time.”

The game day aficionado: Noah Gould

@boxenautzen

A typical Oregon Duck football game is electrified with the energy of thousands of die-hard Duck fans. If you’ve been to a home game recently, especially in the student section, you might have noticed the word Autzen in a green, Supreme-like box logo plastered on the shirts, hoodies and beanies of many students and other fans. If so, you have witnessed the work of UO 2019 graduate Noah Gould and his revitalized game day clothing brand BoxenAutzen.

With a focus on providing gear for football games, Gould was inspired to create his brand when he noticed the large price margin of common game day gear while studying abroad in Italy in the fall of 2017. Being the first time he had interacted with game day outside of Eugene, he had an epiphany.

“Something I noticed quickly was that everyone was wearing the same things,” Gould said. “It was pretty much Nike jerseys and a couple beat tees sprinkled here and there. You’re looking at a beat tee, which they’re giving out for free, and you look at a Nike jersey and they retail for $150.”

Gould realized the majority of game day attire fell on either end of this cost spectrum with no real middle ground. That was the moment he was inspired to fill this gap.

After his time in Italy, his newfound inspiration led him to design some shirts intended to only be worn by his friends. Through the fall of 2018, the orders simply kept coming in, eventually passing 500, Gould said. It was not long before he received backlash from the university’s brand management, claiming he was making a profit by infringing on their word: Autzen. By early 2019, Gould said he received a cease and desist letter from the university to stop his business, and he did.






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Noah Gould, a UO graduate, sports gameday apparel from his Autzen-inspired clothing brand, BoxenAutzen. Students with style: UO students discuss their fashion businesses and why they got started. (Photo courtesy of Henry Ammann)


With a dwindling sense of spirit for the university amid this legal turmoil, he eventually connected with a local manufacturer that had an existing pipeline to get products licensed and to work directly with the university.

“I figured out a way to get my products through this licensing funnel where I can sell products and the university can make royalties off of them,” Gould said.

By the middle of 2020, he finally had UO’s support to sell his product and was receiving sales orders from the Duck Store. Designing from his home in Los Angeles with his production and shipping teams based in Eugene, his business came back in full swing, and Gould has been amazed by the success he’s seen for this season.

“Going into Autzen the night of Nov. 13, I was blown away at how much BoxenAutzen I saw around the stadium,” Gould said. “It’s really rewarding to see it where it’s supposed to be seen — in its natural habitat on a Saturday.”

With plans to grow the business and reach beyond a football focus and branch out into gear for all sports all year round, Gould said he wants his brand to be something that will stick around in five to 10 years. Being immersed in such a large market of Duck fans pouring in year after year motivates him to want to make a bigger impact on UO culture and future generations to come.

“I want to share my love for the Ducks with the world,” Gould said. “I want to make you feel or at least remember what it was to be a student and to be in Autzen with all your best friends on a Saturday.”

A creative spirit, a consistent dedication and a passion for their craft is what set these students apart as individuals who have been making waves in their community and establishing their mark on the world one sale at a time.

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