California fashion

Midwest v. West Coast | Save My Closet?

Friday, July 03, 2015 Carolyn Portner

As Rihanna would say, "SOS, please someone help me!" My blazers, flats and signature necklaces have no place in the casual California style. The fashion differences from the traditional Midwest chic to the diverse California trendiness, has me wondering if my closet should have more kimonos and fedoras? Do I need a closet overhaul (in a couple months when I can afford better groceries than Ramen noodles)?

I love the unique LA fashion. You can't turn a corner and see the same outfit twice. I also love the chic and classic Midwest style. I'm torn! The only way to solve this dilemma is a good old-fashion (pun-intended) BATTLE. With the help of a couple former Midwesterners turned LA stunners, Midwest v. West Coast fashion starts now!

Mateo The Business Man | Work Attire

Mateo Aguirre, Hometown: Waukegan, IL, Oleg Bogdan Photography
Most work environments encourage business apparel (displayed on the left). Except for casual Fridays of course. In Los Angeles, specifically in the entertainment industry, it is always casual Friday (displayed on the right). Sure if you head to any business district, you will find your fair share of suits. That is one of the benefits of professional life in LA--I never have to wear an uncomfortable business skirt again! But damn, I'll miss my co-workers interesting casual Friday choices in the Midwest...

Lisa The Socialite | Going-Out Swag

Lisa Mihelich, Hometown: Rockford, IL, Oleg Bogdan Photography
Going out is a great chance to let loose and meet new, interesting people--and an awesome excuse to dress up. For a night out in downtown Chicago, a cute jacket, flowy top and a dark jean is an easy and comfortable choice (displayed on the left). In Los Angeles, you can not go wrong with a classic full-body jumpsuit (displayed on the right). Honestly, you can get away with wearing anything out on the town in LA--I even wonder if it has become a competition of who can wear the most daring outfit. Bring it Los Angelenos, I'll bring my fedora and raise you a crop top!

Ari The Sunday Brunch-goer | Everyday Outfit

Ari Wekerle, Hometown: Antioch, IL, Oleg Bogdan Photography
First of all, brunch over everything. There is nothing like a relaxing Sunday hangout with friends while enjoying french toast and mimosas. On a beautiful Midwest Sunday, a cute floral skirt and colorful top would be perfect (displayed on the left). In Cali, a simple romper with a bold shoe and kimono is always on point (displayed on the right). Most importantly, you can't forget your shades in LA where everyone sports sunglasses 24/7, even indoors. Grocery stores, restaurants, bars--apparently everyone's eyes are so sensitive. If I start wearing my sunglasses in Trader Joe's while holding a freshly squeezed Kale juice, I will know I am a true Californian.

I am not claiming to be a fashionista, though I do know my way around a bold tribal print. If there is one thing Los Angeles has taught me, it is that you can be anything you want here. This city makes you feel uninhibited, whether that is regarding your professional goals or the color of your hair. I mean who knows, in six months I could have blue hair! (don't worry grandma I think green is a better match for my completion).

All jokes aside, I don't have to change my closet--nobody does! What is stylish and trendy is all personal preference. If Los Angeles is a city that encourages individuality, no closet should be the same. So the final verdict in the Midwest v. West Coast fashion battle..a tie.

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