The creative, funky street style of the West Bank – The Minnesota Daily
With students wearing vintage, handmade and second-hand clothing across the university’s West Bank, her style is something to marvel at – and we have insight into her favorite shops, sources of inspiration and style vision.
Step aside, East Bank or St. Paul! The University of Minnesota’s West Bank campus is home to university majors known for their fashion-forward students who strut the snow-covered campus sidewalks. From thrifty MIS majors to arts majors with a fairycore vibe, we’ve got an up close and personal look at the inspiration for the outfits that give the West Bank its creative and funky reputation.
In her frayed tri-color jeans, ’90s-inspired mesh tank top, and black beret, Jacquelyn Fay’s archival, decayed look underscores the idea that fashion emphasizes personality.
“These dented Dr. Martens with the paint on it,” Fay said of her shoes, “they’re an art staple.”
The art major takes inspiration from Korean fashion, or K-fashion, and sticks to neutral colors to accentuate the details seen in her fairycore ambiance, which is said to play with her last name, Fay.
“I’m usually pretty focused on art, but I have a feeling that as an art student you’re also interested in fashion,” Fay said. “It goes hand in hand”
Big and bright colors
Mara Westgaard, who is majoring in Cinema and Media Culture, appreciates patterns, bold colors and “a lot of Halloween stuff all year round.”
Westgaard’s look consisted of lavender Dolls Kill pumps with smiling Jack-O-Lantern faces on each foot, a matching lavender button-up, patterned tights with a leather jacket, black dress and white turtleneck neutralizing the finished look.
She explained that her outfits focus on one particularly bold color and often use neutral pieces to accentuate that color.
“I try to incorporate some trends to stay relevant, but I really like basing it on my own look,” Westgaard said.
For this late ’60s early ’70s lover, long corduroy button-down dresses, peace sign belts and turquoise embellished jewelry are among her must-haves.
Adriannah Popkey, who studies cultural studies and comparative literature, is first and foremost a vintage shopper. With Up Six Vintage and 316 at the top of her favorite thrift stores, her style comes from finding individual pieces in the Twin Cities and bringing them together to create a Joni Mitchell-era inspired look.
“I just like finding my different little things around town and putting them all together,” Popkey said. “Basically, these pieces are inspiration that I like to lean on.”
Connie Pierce’s eclectic style emerged growing up in Austin, Texas and followed her when she came to Minnesota for college.
The dance major wore a striking white quilted jacket with fluorescent detailing, the body and sleeves covered in a childish floral print, cherry red hair, loose-fitting mom jeans and a worn pair of Dr. martens
“I shop mostly in Austin, at the thrift stores that we have,” Pierce said.
Pavement, Leopard Lounge, and Flamingos Vintage Pound are some of Pierce’s favorite thrift and consignment stores in her hometown, and she recommends all thrift lovers visit when in the area.
A self-proclaimed “Grob” major in Management Information Systems, Alexander Ngo hails from St. Paul and is a lover of thrift.
In his forest green and navy blue vintage winter jacket, metal-framed glasses, black beanie and white sneakers hiding a camo print leaving a line pattern in the snow, Ngo embodied the trends forged in 1980s fashion.
“My personal style…I’d say it’s somewhere between a confident geek and a confident nerd,” he said, laughing.
Ngo shops at various local Goodwill stores in the Twin Cities and highly recommends checking out My Thrift Stores in East St. Paul.