Matters of Style...with Maria

I have the great fortune to photograph a lot of really amazing people in my career as a photographer. Maria's is one of those people. She has great style and sense of self, so when I decided to publish a blog post about fashion, I knew Maria had to be my guest expert! Maria and I recently had a chat about her unique style and who has inspired her. Maria even includes some of her favorite tips to style a wardrobe to help you be uniquely you!

Maria on Style...

HOW DO YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE? Personally, I describe my look as a slightly flustered kindergarten teacher, but that is just me.

WHO WOULD YOU SAY IS YOUR NUMBER ONE FASHION INSPIRATION? I have several. I would have to say Freddy Mercury for certain as he is a personal hero of mine. Pretty holistic. He found himself well in style. He was un-apologetically himself all the time. He was a bit unconventional in the way he dressed. When I started listening to Queen's music, I started developing my own style. I go for a lot of vintage looks and a lot of more classic styles, so Katherine Hepburn. I also like that Janis Joplin's style was laid back authentic, and yet feminine in her own way.

WHAT IS A FASHION RULE YOU NEVER BREAK?  I mean it depends, because there are certain rules you could break like mixing stripes and polka dots. In that case, it’s really a rule for everyone else. Sometimes by breaking certain rules you can find something totally unique and super fashionable that you otherwise wouldn't wear. There is an exception for every rule and you just have to experiment to find what speaks to you.  

WHAT IS ONE FASHION TIP THAT IS EASY TO IMPLEMENT? I try to wear a dress once a week. I also try to utilize my whole closet. In certain situations, it is okay to mix it up and try something totally out there. There will always be more outfits to try and more days to try them! Experimentation takes a lot of trial and error. But that is how your style evolves and becomes. Push your boundaries every once and a while and try and find something little that you can really claim as unique about what you wear. (For example, I only wear funky socks. Life’s short, why wear boring socks when I could wear socks with scuba diving hippos on them?) Also, jeans are an often underutilized piece of clothing. Try to look for a way to try something new, for example, try different styles, colors, and patterns to really make your wardrobe stand out.

Some of the outfits Maria put together for her senior photo-session:

Makeup by Elena

Hair by Jodi Lynn

Behind the scenes, senior photoshoot

Behind the scenes in the rain...

I love it when my clients come organized! Maria's mom fashioned a wooden dowl rod to mount in the van to keep Maria's clothes nice and neat!

The Senior Session...

Below left was our first rained but Maria brought her own sunshine!

Below middle-the next day when the sun was our friend! What a difference a day can make!

Floral prom dress, senior photos
Mustard yellow pleather jacket, blue skies, senior session
Senior Photos, Fiddlehead coffee shop, Rochester, MN, French Beret
French Beret, Coffee shop reading, literature
Old movie theaters, Chateau Theatre, Downtown Rochester, French Beret
glasses, senior girl, yellow jacket, mustard color
brown leather boots, jumping,  mustard yellow leather jacket

Style pointers with Maria continued...


FAVORITE FASHION MAGAZINE? I don't really have any. When I was little, I always wanted to get a fashion magazine but my mom would say no. I do, however, follow several people on Instagram. Occasionally I do look at other sources like the New York Times, or celebrities. I really do this just to see what other people are doing, not as much to explore options for myself.

WHAT ARE SOME OF YOUR CURRENT FASHION OBSESSIONS? My uncle’s girlfriend is fashion industry and lives in Japan. She sent me several plaid shorts and I hope those come into fashion here. They are 7 to 8 inches above my knee. I think they are adorable and I think people will go crazy for them. I really hope high waisted jeans stay around. I love the color scheme that is popular now, mustard's and fall colors. What I hope comes along soon as a trend are really funky socks.

Japanese plaid shorts

A new trend from Japan? Hopefully!

More on fashion with Maria...

HEELS OR FLATS?  Flats 100%! I had to wear a pair of heels and a long black dress in 80 degree weather on a recent trip to Disney with my school. If you are uncomfortable in the clothes you are wearing, then you can’t adequately express your confidence. Comfort= confidence

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE ERA FOR FASHION? Tough one! I would probably say mid 60’s when it started being okay to not wear a fancy dress or have your hair done all the time. It started the era of being free to express yourself. It was the era of Beatniks and hippies and led to a lot of fashion experimentation. 

WHAT IS YOUR DREAM JOB? That’s what I’m trying to figure out still.

FAVORITE FASHION BRAND THAT YOU APPRECIATE OR WEAR? Not really, I like getting most of my clothes second hand. I do tend to wear sneakers. I always have at least two pairs of Converses. Extremely cute and functional. I have a secondhand pair of jeans that I love called Liverpool.

Wrapping up our convo...

MARILYN MONROE OR AUDREY HEPBURN? Both have important elements of fashion, and it’s hard to say that the classiness of Audrey is worth more than the expression of sexuality of Marilyn. Personally, I draw a bit more from Audrey, so I’d have to say her, but both women are incredibly important in who they were and what they represent.

FAVORITE ITEM OF CLOTHING? I have this pair of polka dot jeans, and I have this black blazer. And like any teenager, I love a good hoodie

FAVORITE QUOTE? “Still I rise”- Maya Angelou and “Very few of us are what we seem” -Agatha Christie

Maria graduates this Spring from Mayo High School. Our sessions took place downtown, in Downtown Rochester, Minnesota and at Quarry Hill and Fiddlehead Coffee

Royal Blue coat, glasses, red lips,