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Melissa from ISLY is one of the first Utah fashion bloggers I found and I immediately fell in love. Her blog is overflowing with creative ideas, lovely graphics and stylish re-fashions. Her sewing skills are nothing short of impressive and her blog is simply inspiring. Here’s what she has to say about style in Utah:

How would you describe your style?
My style is pretty eclectic and depends purely on my mood. It ranges from bohemian, southwestern, rocker chic to 60s housewife. I’m a product of what influences me and Anthropologie, JCrew, The Sartorialist, the other million fashion blogs I follow and Pinterest are all big players in that.

How would you describe Utah’s style?
As a whole, I’d say the modest fashion realm tends to lean towards the bright, playful and young. I’m seeing a lot of jewel tones, prints (sometimes mixed!) and lots and lots of funky belts.

How do you think Utah’s style has evolved over your lifetime and what do you think encouraged that evolution?
When I was in high school, all girls ever seem to wear were platform flip flops, flared jeans, studded belts and colored v-necks with white undershirts. Personal style wasn’t something that was necessarily a priority at that point. I started working at Wet Seal at the time (a high point in my life, I know) and it was then when I started playing with colors, patterns, the stiletto and dresses. The entrance of affordable fashion stores in Utah like Forever21, Urban Outfitters and soon-to-be H&M, along with the growth of modest clothing boutiques, has definitely changed the way Utahans think about dressing themselves. I feel like affordable, demure fashion has never been more accessible in Utah than it is now. It’s that accessibility that has fostered a lot of maturation in the fashion scene (among Mormon communities at least). The boom of street-style fashion blogs has also played a big part in where things are in Utah. Seeing and reading what’s trending in New York, London, Paris and other fashion hot spots has never been so abundant.

Modesty and frugality have been attributed to Utah’s “lack of style.” How do you think those things affect style in Utah?
A lot of people may see modesty and frugality as big restrictors on personal style but, for me, it’s within those boundaries that I get the most creative. Those two attributes have been major players in fashion in Utah in the past, but I feel like those issues have taken a back seat as more affordable and fashionable resources have become available. 

What’s your best piece of style advice?
Going outside one’s comfort zone, or even clothing department, can foster some truly
fun fashion results. I like to keep in mind the styles, colors and ideas that may be in vogue while I wander the men’s, boy’s, girl’s and women’s departments in stores. Don’t pigeonhole yourself to any one style, either. Life’s short. Have fun dressing yourself.

Be sure to check out Melissa’s blog, I Still Love You, for more eclectic style, refashions and design inspiration. And stay tuned for more local blogger’s takes on Utah style.

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