Fun socks and statement outerwear like a customized denim jacket and a rainbow puffer turn Ava Feneberger’s outfits into looks. Ava, a junior visual and media arts major, busies herself with acting, producing, and directing in different Emerson shows including “Ava and Soph” and “The Alright Kids.” Her college style drastically changed since her freshman year, and Ava feels she’s now found a style she fully embraces.
Q: How would you describe your personal style to someone who’s never seen you in person?
A: Not very polished, I’d say. I don’t think my style really makes sense. I just kind of throw a bunch of things on top of each other. I feel like it’s not very cohesive from day to day. I only wear jeans— that’s the one thing that never changes. There’s usually that one thing that’s always a little weird, but it doesn’t feel weird to me— a statement piece that’s an everyday item. I recently got this rainbow parka that I’ve been wearing all over the place that’s striped and puffy, and I love it but I get so many weird looks from people.
I look like I walked out of a thrift store and am 50 and maybe color blind— that’s kind of my vibe.
Q: Do you have any style icons?
A: I don’t know if there’s one particular person that I dress like. In terms of general vibe, Iris Apfel. She’s this fashion woman who’s always wearing different patterns and huge jewelry and glasses. She’s so crazy, and I don’t think I’m there yet, but that’s what I strive to be. I want to be a pre-Iris.
Q: Where do you find style inspiration?
A: I follow a lot of fashion accounts on Instagram, but it’s more of that I really appreciate their style, but don’t necessarily go out and buy clothes they promote. I follow the Forever 21 and ASOS plus size account on Instagram. I feel like I’ve had the same pieces of clothing for the longest time. I don’t really shop that much mostly because, well, you need money to shop.
I just find the one cheap thing that I like and I wear it all the time.
Q: When you do shop, where do you go?
A: Thrifting. There’s a few thrift stores in my hometown in Georgia that have a lot of good stuff. I was in LA over the summer and lived in Santa Monica, and their Goodwills are stacked because everyone’s rich and just throws away their clothes. I go to Urban Outfitters when I’m feeling spendy or H&M. Primark, every once in a while I’ll find something there. And Target— they have a new trendy line, Wild Fable.
Like I said, I don’t really shop that much, I kind of just find ways to recycle what I have.
Q: What’s your go-to fall outfit?
A: I only wear high-waisted black skinny jeans, I wear my roommate’s old knock-off Docs because I can’t find my chelsea boots, I wear a fun-printed sock. Depending on how cold it gets, I’m usually in this denim jacket or the rainbow parka. If it’s actually cold, I have a black pea coat, but that’s kind of boring. I have a lot of turtlenecks, something with stripes on it. I wear a lot of rings and earrings usually. I always also have a scrunchie.
Q: Do you have a certain favorite color you like to wear?
A: I like warm colors, so yellows or pinks. I don’t really wear any greens or blues.
Q: Do you have a favorite article of clothing?
A: Definitely this jacket. It was my sister’s and we went on a road trip this summer, so the patches are actually from that. I love to customize things— I’m a Taurus.
Q: If you could wear one outfit for the rest of your life, what would it be?
A: Practically, it has to be layers to account for the weather. I’d wear black high-waisted skinny jeans because that works for all weather. Converse. I’d probably wear a black t-shirt and a fun jacket. And I’d wear a nice lipstick. I feel like makeup is part of the outfit.
Q: What outfit would you be buried in?
A: I’d want to go big or go fancy. I’d want to be buried in a Gucci gown or something really extra. I’d want a fur coat or something ridiculous— a leopard print or something. Just go out with a bang.
Q: Do you think your style has changed since you’ve started college?
A: Yeah. The beginning of college, first of all, I didn’t have bangs. So that was radical. I had really long hair. I was going for preppy, New England Blair Waldorf. And then I was like, who am I kidding? That didn’t work. And so I chopped my hair off, got bangs, and got a nose ring. Last year, I was being more experimental. I dressed like I went to film school, and now I’m just fully embracing that.
Q: What are some style tips you swear by?
A: Wear lipstick, cuff your jeans, have a staple jacket, and have a few things that are fun. My rainbow jacket is there when I want to wear something happy.
Q: What advice would you give to plus-size women who want to better dress for their form?
A: Especially when I was younger, all the advice I got was, “wear loose fitting stuff at the top,” and I was never about that. I never looked like I was dressing for a plus-sized body. I kind of just wear whatever I want.