[outfit post] A Checkered Past or, The Roaming Tsinay vs. Normcore: Round 2

As promised, today was my second attempt at Normcore.

IMG_7723Top: Baclaran (men’s checkered button down) / Dickies SM (Black pullover)
Cardigan: Vintage menswear from Mum’s baul.  (Was probably my guakong‘s.)
Skinny Jeans: Topshop
Sneakers: Shulong
Socks: Tabi-Ji (bought during trip to Japan in 2009)



Aaaand hipster billboard pose.


Technically, normcore should be as plain as possible, but obviously, I wasn’t able to resist a few extra touches.  The checked socks (adorable tabi-style socks I got from Japan but have only managed to wear today), rainbow-grommet sneaks, and cross necklace are all technically a no-no, but I kept them anyway because I felt they made the outfit more me.


Nike made me pose this way.  (All photos are by Nike Amistoso.)


Honestly, I feel this look is more 90s Seattle Grunge (hello Stories Told) than “normcore,” but Arra said she’d give it a pass.  Yay!  Or not.  Apparently, both Arra and I, along with every other style blogger and fashion mag, have this whole “normcore” thing completely backwards.

…for real.

Right as normcore’s style was rising in the West, Dazed Digital did a piece on trend agency K-Hole’s (the guys who came up with the term to begin with) interpretation of the whole affair.  According to them, normcore has absolutely nothing to do with fashion, and everything to do with personality–specifically, the fluidity of identity common in millenials (i.e. the hipster generation).  In the words of LA-based journalist Christopher Glazek (the chosen spokesperson for K-Hole):

Normcore means you pursue every activity like you’re a fanatic of the form. It doesn’t really make sense to identify normcore as a fashion trend – the point of normcore is that you could dress like a NASCAR mascot for a big race and then switch to raver ware for a long druggy night at the club. It’s about infinitely flexible, sunny appropriation.

Basically, the point of normcore is not mastering a single, nondescript, “lazy” style, but rather be able to adapt to any subculture or crowd, embracing their style and spirit wholeheartedly.  It’s dressing as a Dalek at NexCon, but being equally comfortable in body-con and platform sneaks at an Icona Pop concert.

Screen Shot 2014-07-24 at 2.15.12 PM

Snippet of Dazed Digital’s article.

What everyone’s been going gaga over is a trend that K-Hole calls “Acting Basic,” which is defined as “…dressing with forced neutrality in order to avoid standing out.”  How the socks + sandals look factors into that definition, I don’t know, but suffice it to say that it is Acting Basic (a concept that, according to K-Hole, is so several seasons ago–in fact I saw what would come to be mistakenly called “normcore” sported quite well by a lot of Korean/Japanese fashion bloggers, several years back) that has filled the internet with mom/dad jeans and running shoes.

With that cleared up, it’s pretty apparent that I won’t be mastering the chameleonic art of “normcore” anytime soon.  Instead, I’ll go back to doing what I do best: acting weird and sticking out like a sore thumb. :))


 Preparing for lift-off…


Flapping wings…


Lift-off!  (Sorry for the belly shot.)



Well, this is one way to come up with ideas…


 Credits to Mike G. for suggesting this pose…ow.

So that closes out my #ootd-laden work-week!  Hope you guys have a great weekend!






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