Clothes & Pizza

My California Style vs. My New York Style

I have been thinking a lot about how my personal style has evolved as a Californian turned New Yorker turned Californian. In many ways I feel like I “grew up” when I moved to NYC, and in equal ways, my personal style grew up with me. I learned the art of layering, how to put together a monochromatic outfit, and the importance of functional footwear. I stopped shopping at Forever 21 and started investing in clothing that would still be intact after one wash. Yes, I still shop and Zara and Urban sometimes. No, I’m not perfect (shocker) don’t @ meeeeeeeee.

One of the biggest differentiators of New York style is that because people are always on the go, the “rules” for style are more flexible. Let me explain: a typical Thursday in my New York life might include a morning coffee meeting before work, a full work day in the office, a gallery opening at happy hour, dinner with friends, and then drinks or a party (if not multiple in the same night). That’s a lot of stuff. Back to back to back. No changing, no exceptions. And no car to use as an extension of your purse. Therefore, it’s not out of the ordinary to be way overdressed or way underdressed at any given time. You never know if someone is on their way to a Black Tie Gala, or off to an evening yoga class. And while I don’t think Californians are necessarily more judgmental of wacky or unexpected style, they might be more surprised when they encounter it.

My life as a Californian is much slower (on purpose, it’s one of the benefits of leaving New York City). And my personal style is geared more towards comfort and function, than commanding head turns. Back Beat Rags is the epitome of California casual chic. All of their pieces are insanely wearable—super soft materials cut into ultra flattering silhouettes in an earthy color palette. It’s a little bit surf ‘n skate culture, mixed with a subtle femininity. They focus on the usual suspects: easy, wearable tees, sweatshirts, dresses and jumpsuits. I love that it’s possible to build an entire wardrobe from their sweet and simple collection.

Everything from Back Beat Rags is made in Los Angeles. They buy locally knitted fabric and work with small, family owned businesses. This way, Back Beat Rags supports local makers and creates jobs at every rung of the supply ladder, while also minimizing their environmental imprint. They also incorporate environment-friendly practices in their designs by using low-impact goods like GOTS-certified organic cotton, recycled cotton, hemp, and tencel.

The California livin’ is easy, it makes sense to dress that way.

California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat RagsCalifornia casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags California casual chic in Back Beat Rags

Pants: The Painter Pant, Back Beat Rags | Top: similar | Jacket: vintage, similar | Boots: Zara, similar | Hat: vintage, similar | Bag: vintage Dooney & Bourke, similar

This post was in partnership with Back Beat Rags. Thank you, as always, for supporting my blog!

2 Responses

    • Yes! Thank you for your note Stephanie. This post was a collaboration with BBR (such a rad company, I’m very lucky to work with them). I have a disclosure on my About Me page, but I *should be* disclosing on each individual post. I appreciate you saying something and I promise to do better with disclosures in the future!

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About Abby


Bay Area-based UX designer by day, clothes horse by night.

Say hello: clothesandpizza@gmail.com

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