A girl can have a closet filled with clothes and still claim she has nothing to wear. And there is always that constant struggle of whether an outfit is “in” or not. Trends in the fashion industry have become part of a cycle and we learn that while many styles come and go, classic trends never die! Iconic female characters will forever inspire women’s fashion.
We always want the latest fashion trends in our closets to make us look hip but not take away from who we are. Twenty-year-old Brittany Mahoney–Fashion Marketing and Merchandising student at The Art Institute of New York City–finds her style inspiration by living in one of the fashion capitals of the world and learning from a personal icon of her own–her grandmother!
YHM: How do you think Rosie the Riveter and June Cleaver define women of the 1950′s and now in 2013?
Brittany Mahoney (BM): The two women are opposite in nature, however both understand their role in society in their given period of time. Rosie the Riveter represents the hard-working woman fulfilling a man’s job while June Cleaver maintains the classic American Housewife–fulfilling the woman’s role of the time. These ladies translate to the 2013 woman that has the choice to be a working class woman or the quintessential housewife.
The women of this generation have proved their ability to compete against men for jobs that were once considered “a man’s job.” These women maintain a beautiful blend of intelligence and strength that makes them strong enough to handle the work.
YHM: Rosie the Riveter and June Cleaver have certainly inspired women’s fashion in the coming years with a little modern twist. What classic-inspired styles are your favorite for the summer?
I am a huge advocate of female modesty, femininity and elegance transfused with the power to maintain the mysterious allure of the 1950′s woman.
BM: When translating these values into my fashion sense I make sure to choose clothing that covers my chest completely and my knees. Midi- or Maxi-length skirts and dresses are a must in my summer wardrobe, paired with a high-neck collared blouse. Button-up blouses have become a staple in my wardrobe, a classic style that Mrs. June Cleaver would approve of.
YHM: How does living and studying in New York affect your fashion sense?
BM: Living in New York City has had a profound impact on my sense of style as I am exposed to some of the most fashionable women on the planet at every moment of the day. These women are a source of inspiration to my own style in that they are innovative, unique, and show stopping. I am blessed to have access to thousands of clothing stores and boutiques filled with the finest clothing on the planet. I have learned to perfect my strut just by observing the women that walk proudly down Fifth Avenue in their Christian Louboutins.
YHM: I understand you also design your own fashion pieces. Who inspires you to make them?
It is in my blood to be involved in fashion.
BM: One of the most inspirational women of all time , Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel is at the top of my role model list. This is one of the first women to make it in a man’s world at a time when women were seldom taken seriously. She is more than a design role model for me; I admire her understated elegance, grace, and poise that she consistently maintained throughout her lifetime.
My Grandmother inspires me to make fashion pieces for it is a trait that has been passed down through our blood. I come from a long line of seamstresses, tailors, and shoemakers from Naples, Italy. It is in my blood to be involved in fashion, a pre-determined destiny if you will.
By Jannel Varona