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Fashion

Welcome back, Birkenstocks

The oddly familiar cork-and-rubber-sole sandals, commonly dubbed as “ugly”, were once your dad’s go-to shoe back in the “dirty hippie” days. Yet, for some reason, these shoes are back in style and can be seen all over campus sported by your UCLA peers. Birkenstocks are back for good, and interestingly enough, people are labeling these shoes an essential for comfort in high fashion. So, as a proud owner myself, I’ve created a short list of some reasons why you should jump on the bandwagon (I promise, it’s worth it).

1. Personalized Comfortability

I bought my first pair this past August, and I remember immediately trying them on expecting them to be pillows for my feet. Boy, was I wrong. Breaking in a brand new pair of cork-and-rubber foot beds is painful (I still have the scars at the arches of my feet from the blisters I got.) But there is a reason for all this: The cork will slowly mold to your feet and create personalized imprints. It’s neat because for those who have flat feet like me, my Birkenstock molds provide me the much-needed support. It’s also pretty cool because if someone else wears your shoe, it won’t be as comfy or fitting to them. Oh, one more thing. You can even wear them with socks for the ultimate satisfaction. Might not be the cutest outfit, but hey, if you’re comfortable it’s all that matters, right?

                                     

2. In 20 years …

History repeats itself, and it seems fashion does too. Although Birkenstocks have been around since the early 1900s, the popularity of this brand of shoes reaches an apex every 20 years or so. Even though you weren’t the first person to start the trend this time, you can be at the top of your fashion game in the next 20 years if these do come back. Why? because you’ll have these shoes in the back of your closet, in pristine condition. The durability of the cork, rubber and leather will stand all types of weather and wear, and Birkenstocks are sturdy and comfortable enough to be worn all day, every day. There’s no question why your parents still wear theirs years later.

3. Versatility

Woke up a little too late for class? You can slip on your Birkenstocks. Can’t find shoes that are sleek enough for your leather leggings? You can wear your Birkenstocks. Going for a minimalistic look? Yup, you guessed it: You can wear your Birkenstocks. I’ve seen Birkenstocks on models for high fashion ads and have seen guys and girls pair these shoes with a trendy bohemian outfit. On the other hand, I’ve seen some girls on the UCLA soccer team sport these shoes after practice to give their feet a break. Moral of the story: Birkenstocks are the ultimate go-to shoe for your everyday needs.

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CultureFashion

PUMPS and Circumstance: Shoes for Graduation

Graduation season: The time when countless of Bruins anxiously await the day that is the culmination of their UCLA experience. It is around this time that countless questions start to arise: Did I meet all of my requirements? Have I purchased my cap and gown? Am I going to pass this last class I need to graduate (uh-oh)? But none of these questions are as worrisome and important as, WHAT SHOES AM I GOING TO WEAR? 

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Fashion

UCLA Student Weekly Style Highlight

This week we wandered around campus and talked to students whose school-day style stood out among the sea of UCLA sweatshirts.

We stumbled across Zoe Goldstein (left), a third-year English student, studying outside of the Public Affairs Building. Goldstein says when she gets ready in the morning she doesn’t plan her outfit. She doesn’t even have a closet! She keeps all her clothing in cardboard boxes and wears whatever she grabs out in the three minutes she has between waking up and walking to class (which explains the stylishly mismatched socks). Her favorite places to buy clothes are thrift stores like Hollywood’s Jet Ragwhere shoppers can purchase items for a dollar each on Sundays. Hand-me-downs like these patterned tights are even better though because they’re free!

We interrupted first-year student Emily Liang (right) from her deep enchantment in the works of Plato to talk to her about her yellow, patterned pants. Liang said her outfit was inspired by the sunny, pleasant weather. She also chose a jean shirt to complete her blue and yellow school-spirited ensemble and brown ankle boots (she told us she can’t wear sneakers without being reminded of a middle school playground). And you must be wondering where she got those pants, right? She snagged them at Forever 21, one of her favorite stores. Before we could let Emily return to reading Plato, we gave her the impossible task of describing her style in terms of a movie, plant and color. Love Actually/Mint/Grass Green was her answer (We’ll let you decide what that means).

We spotted Charlene Tam (above) outside Royce Hall. It would have been hard not to spot her, what with her cotton-candy-pink locks and rainbow ensemble. Tam, a third-year Japanese student, is inspired by Harajuku fashion, in particular the style of Japanese singer/model/blogger Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (Google her and you’ll see the resemblance). Tam was particularly proud of her Alice in Wonderland print sweatshirt, a recent purchase. What excited us most about Tam’s style, however, was her attention to detail – from her nail polish (pastel colors with mini desserts painted on top) to the stuffed unicorn clipped to her bag.

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Arts & Entertainment

Whitney Port Holds Q&A with Students

Last night, while UCLA sports fans headed to Pauley Pavilion to watch the USC basketball game, UCLA fashionistas packed into Moore 100 to hear Whitney Port (a USC grad) speak.

Port, an L.A. native, rose to fame as the cast member of the popular MTV reality show “The Hills” and later started her own spin-off show “The City.” Now, Port lives her life off-camera, trying to transition from TV personality to designer, working on the next collection of her clothing line, Whitney Eve.

Campus Events Commission organized the talk by Port, who has been touring colleges recently to answer fans’ questions about her career and encourage young women to pursue their dreams.

Although she is a designer, Port said she never took any design or sewing classes. She gained the bulk of her experience by interning at places like Women’s Wear Daily and Teen Vogue. So her best advice to young go-getters, she told the crowd, is to find a company you want to work for and send them everything you’ve got: a resume, portfolio, etc. She also encouraged audience members to send their resumes to her company and email [email protected] to apply.

After dishing out the career advice, Port addressed some of the following questions about her reality TV life:

  • How much of her show The City is real and how much isn’t? The show was not scripted but scenarios are “played up” by producers.
  • Is Olivia as vicious as she seems? She can be catty, but is mostly just frustrated by the cameras.
  • Does Whitney see Spencer, Heidi or LC much? She never sees Spencer and Heidi, but catches up with Lauren every once in a while, most recently during a furniture shopping trip.

And the best question of the night: How does she make herself so beautiful? She washes her face regularly and uses hair masks, she said. But now that she isn’t constantly being filmed, she said she puts in a lot less effort.

“I don’t know … Now, if you saw me the office atmosphere, you wouldn’t think I was so beautiful,” she said, laughing.

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Fashion

Campus Fashion Feature: Falling for Fall

Name: Hillary Bolger
Year: Fourth

Bolger caught our eye with her simple, yet chic combination of a light sweater and denim shirt. It’s perfect for L.A.’s chilly, autumnal mornings and warm afternoons. The denim shirt adds a pop of color to an otherwise neutral outfit and the rimmed glasses complete the look.

Mojo: How would you describe your style?

Hilary: Situational. It depends on where I am. I dress a lot differently at school than I do when I go to work. I like to look nice but still be comfortable.

M: Do you have a style inspiration?

H: There’s not really one person that I necessarily look to… I definitely look to the past a lot. A lot of vintage high fashion people.

M: Do you have a favorite store?

H: I go to Urban Outfitters, Anthropology, Nasty Gal and a lot of thrift stores.

M: Do you think having your own individual style is important?

H: For me it is. When you look at somebody, whether or not you should have a snap judgment about them, you definitely do. So I think it’s a good way to get a sense of your personality across.

M: Is there anything in your bag or purse that you can’t live without?

H: Definitely sunglasses and lip-gloss.

M: Do you have a favorite article of clothing?

H: I have a pair of black boots, with a little bit of a heel, that are still super comfortable. They go with everything.

M: How would you describe fashion at UCLA?

H: Varied… Definitely varied. A lot better than I originally expected. There are a lot of people that are very fashion-conscious here. It’s fun to people-watch.

How do you change up your look for fall? Have a friend you think we should include in our fashion feature? Share your thoughts in the comments below or tweet us @dbmojo.

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