Beauty & Style Editor Sam Brinton and videographer Shaina Ahmed took to Washington Square Park to get a sense of NYU students’ spring style in this year’s mini-edition of Fringe.
May 7, 2021
The weather’s getting warmer, vaccination numbers are climbing and Washington Square Park is more bustling than ever. Students have emerged from their bedrooms and shed their Zoom sweatpants in favor of snazzier styles — and what better place to strut your stuff than WSP? We headed to NYU’s unofficial quad to capture a spontaneous look at some of our classmates’ spring outfits. Here is this year’s mini-edition of Fringe, WSN’s fashion feature.
Tisch first-year Maia Kahn
The first student we met, and the undisputed winner of the quirkiest kicks award, was Tisch first-year Maia Kahn. Kahn wore a red cold-shoulder top, navy-and-white polka-dotted pants and the standout piece — a pair of blue denim cowboy boots.
“I got them from my grandma,” Kahn said. “I’m not sure where she got them — she has all sorts of cool vintage clothes and shoes from her travels and whatnot, and we have the same shoe size. So one day, I was in her closet, and she was like, ‘I have some shoes and stuff, you can take whatever!’ and I went, ‘Oh my God, these are great.’”
Khan, who studies costume design, said she loves bold, color-coordinated looks.
“If I leave the house and I don’t have a matching and fun outfit then I just don’t feel right,” she said.
Her unique footwear has even become an inside joke among her friends.
“They’ve achieved fame in my friend group,” Kahn said. “Someone — I don’t remember if it was me or someone else — was like, ‘they’re joots.’ Now whenever I wear them someone is always like, ‘Oh my God, Maia’s wearing the joots!’”
CAS sophomore Talia Pavlin, LS sophomore Amanda Riedl and CAS first-year Morgan Alexander
We met CAS sophomore Talia Pavlin, LS sophomore Amanda Riedl and CAS first-year Morgan Alexander sitting together and chatting by the fountain.
Pavlin wore a black raincoat, a matching black cropped long-sleeve turtleneck, wide-legged denim jeans and well-loved Air Force Ones. She accessorized the look with dangling silver key earrings, as well as a second pair of silver cherries.
“I don’t know how they have withstood so much because they’re from Brandy Melville and they were like, three and a half dollars,” Pavlin said. “They do actually break a lot, and I have to keep putting them back together!”
Riedl wore a colorful pink-and-orange melange sweater, a pastel pink miniskirt and white creepers with lavender ankle socks. Most of her outfit was composed of gifted or thrifted items.
“These shoes I got in high school from a friend, she just gave them to me. I got lucky with the creepers,” Riedl said. “My skirt is Shein — but I bought it at Buffalo Exchange, so it is sustainable. And I thrifted my sweater like four years ago.”
Riedl also sported a pastel abstract-print headscarf, which she pulled out at the encouragement of Alexander and Pavlin.
“I’m serving babushka,” Reidl joked as she tied it around her head.
The final member of the group was Alexander, who wore white Alexander McQueen sneakers, black ripped Urban Outfitters jeans and a blue bra top and cropped cardigan set from Zara. She also carried a dark blue Telfar bag, a highly-coveted item gifted by her mom.
All three agreed that their sense of style has changed in some way since the beginning of the pandemic.
“When the pandemic started, I was back home in Maryland, but now I’m here in New York,” Alexander said. “I’ve seen a lot more in terms of fashion that I didn’t know was out there.”
Global Liberal Studies first-year Chuck Palmo and Steinhardt first-year Zen Williams
Over by the Garibaldi statue, the section of the park favored by skateboarders, Global Liberal Studies first-year Chuck Palmo and Steinhardt first-year Zen Williams were skating and hanging out.
Palmo rocked a bold oversized button-up shirt reminiscent of a Hawaiian vacation, which she layered over a red lingerie top and a black frilly miniskirt. Thrifted red Prada sunglasses covered her eyeliner-winged eyes, and on her feet were Air Force Ones.
“I found them on the street for free,” Palmo said. “Somehow they were perfectly my size.”
Williams wore a white cotton tank top and navy gym shorts, a crossbody olive sport bag, blue-and-yellow tie-dye socks and white Adidas sneakers. He topped the look off with a yellow knit beanie and sleek sunglasses.
Williams’ bag was a vintage piece, but not thrifted.
“I’ve had this bag since I was five years old,” he said. “It’s stood the test of time.”
Palmo and Williams said that even though the pandemic has caused many people to stop caring about their style, they still enjoy going all out with their looks.
“I feel like coming to NYU and being in New York is so nice because I’ve come into my own in general,” Palmo said. “Even though we have Zoom class, I still like to go outside and have fun for no reason, like going to get my groceries in a whole fit.”
“I spent so much time inside and on Zoom just not caring what I looked like,” Williams added. “But this semester I decided, I’m going to be that baddie on Zoom where everybody’s looking at my box.”
Tisch junior Rosie Asmar
Tisch junior Rosie Asmar was reading on a park bench when we spotted her colorful look.
Asmar sported patchwork jeans, a top printed with “Girls” in neon blue script inside a pink heart, and white Converse with a vibrant rainbow design. She accessorized with a myriad of rings, cherry blossom lollipop earrings and choker necklaces.
Asmar thrifted many of her pieces from vintage stores like Here Nor There and Cure Thrift Shop. She emphasized her love of accessorizing, especially with rings.
Asmar said her aesthetic was drawn from her Black and LGBTQ+ cultural backgrounds. As time has passed, she has become more confident in her look.
“It’s evolving where I’m just wearing more and more things, and not worrying about if it’s too much,” she said. “I wear the same things, but I wear them with more confidence.”
Tisch sophomores Atiana Skokan and Paris Monet
We met Tisch sophomores Atiana Skokan and Paris Monet at the fountain handing out college coupon books. The two drama majors met at the Meisner Studio and have been friends ever since.
Skokan wore a black off-shoulder peasant blouse, long tan pants and low-heeled Doc Martens. She accessorized with small gold necklaces and a variety of rings, including some family heirlooms.
“This is my grandfather’s class ring,” Skokan said as she pointed to a large white-and-gold ring with “1958” etched into the sides. “These other rings were my grandmother’s … and I found this one on the floor!”
Monet had on a sportier look, with a denim jacket, black textured leggings and a maroon shirt. Her bright orange nails adorned with tiny butterfly charms added a pop of color to the outfit. For a bit of bling, Monet accessorized with Chanel stud earrings.
Both Monet and Skokan wore the same pair of rectangular sunglasses (Skokan’s in tortoiseshell and Monet’s in black), a matching look that they said was a complete coincidence. The two agreed that since the pandemic, they have dressed up more every time they venture out.
“When I go outside, I definitely want to dress to the nines,” Monet said. “I want to look like I’m about to go to a dinner or something,but really I’m just walking in the park or down the street.”
“It’s very rare that I’ll go outside and I won’t dress up anymore,” Skokan added. “Even sometimes when I go to the store, I feel like I need to make myself presentable — not for anybody else, but for myself because I kind of miss dressing up.”
CAS junior Sarath Kareti
The final student we interviewed, Sarath Kareti, was lounging and eating lunch. Kareti sported a denim jacket over a blue-and-white printed button-down with the top buttons popped. He also wore light tan linen pants, Nike socks and white Adidas sneakers.
Kareti said he prioritizes comfort above all when it comes to his outfits and that his linen pants were his favorite cozy staple.
“I think that my main thing is comfort, but also a more — I guess the word is granola,” Kareti said. “I kind of go for the dad look, wearing a lot of button-down shirts and layers.”
Kareti said that his Zoom style was far more casual than his usual outfits.
“I dress like this before and after Zoom,” he said. “But during [Zoom] I would only wear sweatpants and T shirts because I didn’t care or feel the need to dress up.”
The outfits we saw on our trip to Washington Square Park were all fashionable in their own way, each one an expression of the wearer’s individuality. As the summer approaches, you can expect to find even more Zoom-weary NYU students diving back into their closets and turning out looks around campus. We may not be FIT, but NYU kids certainly still have style.
Email Sam Brinton at [email protected]