As seasons change, wardrobes undergo severe rearrangement and analysis. Having recently moved from Europe to NYC, I’ve noticed my clothes becoming increasingly monochrome and my florals, prints and bolder pieces have been shoved to the back shelf. It seems to me that the West Coast has quite a European vibe – lots of color and individual pieces – whereas East Coast is more minimal and chic. This made me wonder if I could go back to my West Coast vibes, or do you have to blend with what side you’re on?
TV shows like Gossip Girl and 90210 freely dictate the difference between beach bums and city slickers, highlighting rich teens which unlimited finances to support their outrageous wardrobes. Similarly, A-list celebs like SJP and the Olsen twins on my side, and Katy Perry, Kendall Jenner et al on the left, seem to adopt and amplify the coastal style stereotypes. Are these the ones deciding which is which? They do it so well, it’s hard not to find yourself falling in line.
I prefer East Coast purely because it is easy. Statement pieces, chic, monochrome, minimalist look – for a Monday-Friday 9-5 lifestyle, you need to be looking slick which interchangeable outfits. Casual comes in at simple denims and converse. NYC in particular doesn’t seem too experimental – even the hipsters just copycat each other with flannels and skinny jeans. East Coast is uniform, convenient and smart.
More colorful selections, more floral and print, a lot more mix-matching and coming up with unusual combinations. People get more experimental and bold but with a relaxed laissez faire vibe. Beach bums and surfers absolutely embody west coast for me – ripped jeans and layers of fringe vs Katy Perry’s garish luminosity? Beach, please. West Coast changes too much – something could be in one day, and out five minutes later. I wish I had the guts to wear some of the stuff, but East Coast’s classic look is timeless, and safe.
Apart from the occasional LA disaster, street style on both sides works well. East Coast sleek & chic or West Coast hippy chill vibes, the masses are improving at taking hints from tv, media and celebs, and incorporating them into a real life and affordable lifestyle. Once this summer really gets going, I’ll be forced to take a little West Coast inspo into my gloomy NYC wardrobe again!