Michelle Nagler: LA Prep

Growing up in the midst of stylish L.A. has instilled a sense of individuality and distinctiveness in Michelle Nagler SC ’15. Nagler, a Dance and Foreign Language major, looks to fashion as a means to express her personality and understands that, above all, fashion is only what you make of it.

Iris Lieuw: How would you describe your personal style?

Michelle Nagler: My personal style is pretty preppy and classic.
I’m not bohemian, rock-and-roll or chic. I love wearing unique pants—they are my favorite. I feel like if you have a good pair of pants, your day is
going to be better. I also feel the same about
shoes. I have so many cool pairs of shoes.

IL: How has your background, hometown, work experience or family affected your present style?

MN: My family has absolutely affected my personal style. My
mom says it’s hereditary. My grandmother was the biggest fashionista I’ve ever
met. I’ve grown up digging through her closet and wearing her vintage clothes.
She has amazing pieces and I often base my outfits off her clothes. That led me
to my job last summer working at a vintage store in West Hollywood.

IL: Did you like working at the vintage store?

M: It was my dream job. I got to know the clientele and the store owner, who really took me in as an intern and taught me how to price
clothes and find unique pieces. She also taught me about the different
types of customers and what they like. I got to choose pieces when people came
to sell their clothes for consignment. Obviously, I loved the discount and all
the cute clothes. And one of the best parts of working there was changing into
several outfits during the day.

IL: What influences the way you dress?

MN: Classic movies do. I’m obsessed with Audrey Hepburn. Watching a lot of her movies over the years, I’ve grown to admire many of the
characters she’s portrayed, and I want to emulate her “it” quality. She’s so put-together. And positive. I love getting dressed because I love feeling positive. Audrey Hepburn and classic movies are timeless, and I love that.

IL: Do you follow blogs and fashion websites or read
magazines for inspiration? If so, which ones?

MN: I read the blog Man Repeller—it’s so funny and
entertaining. I read TeenVogue and Vogue. I’m not much of a fashion magazine
and blog reader. I just check in on them now and then.

IL: Why is fashion or dressing stylishly important to you?

MN: It helps me feel my best. That’s not to say that in a
non-dressy outfit I won’t feel my best, but it just helps me further.

IL: Where is/are your favorite place(s) to shop? Why?

MN: I can shop anywhere. My absolute favorite store is
Anthropologie, but it’s really pricey, so I only buy things on sale. I shop a lot
in my grandma’s closet and my mom’s [closet]. I also shop at H&M—especially for pants. As far as shoes go, I buy from London Sole, and this street in L.A. called Montana has sidewalk sales a few times a year. I really look out for sales. I
splurge on clothes and accessories that I know will last me a long time, like
nice sweaters or jewelry or statement pieces. I try to buy things that are
timeless. If a piece is unique to me, in my eyes it won’t go out of style and
splurging on it is worth it.

IL: What is your favorite item of clothing in your closet?

MN: I don’t have a favorite item of clothing because I love
all the clothing I have.

IL: Do you have any fashion advice?

MN: Wear what makes you feel most confident or happy. It
doesn’t have to be something other people think look good. As long as it makes
you feel confident, wear it. I believe clothes make you feel better. And don’t
be afraid to wear clothes that might be a little “out there” or not so
mainstream. Maybe that’s why it’ll make you feel more positive and successful, because learning to take risks with fashion helps you get used to taking

IL: Any fashion pet peeves?

MN: I have them, but if the person wearing them feels
comfortable and confident in what they’re wearing, then I really don’t care.
Fashion is all about art, and everybody has a different style than the next
person, so I can’t really judge.

IL: Has being at the 5Cs influenced your style in any way?

MN: I think it might have toned my style down a little bit. As a college student, I go back to my dorm room multiple times a day so I’ll
change my outfit or add things to it. But as far as changing my style, I think I’ve
kept my “me” aesthetic.

IL: What do you think about the way people dress at the 5Cs?

MN: I think it’s pretty casual but people aren’t inhibited
from their expression. A lot of my friends dress really cute. And it’s
California, so you have the advantage of the amazing weather to wear pretty
much whatever you want.

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