LIFESTYLE

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

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Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Last summer, in a book of short stories, I came across a character “wearing a little vintage sundress the color of excellent butter.” Doesn’t that sound just right? I’m still waiting to find that dress in the racks at a thrift store. In the meantime, I found Mya Gelber, a law student in Brooklyn who wears primary colors, along with a few neutrals. Here, she reveals her vintage shopping tips and a great white tee (under $15)…

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Chore coat: Uniqlo. Jeans: Nudie Jeans. Clogs: Plasticana. Bag: Mexican market tote, similar. Socks: Madewell, similar.

When did you start gravitating toward primary colors?
Last year, I did a color analysis on an app. It said I should stick to reds, blues, browns, black, and white. It also told me to stay away from yellow, but I love yellow, so I ignored that.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Sweater: “My mom’s cheer sweater from the ‘80s,” similar. Chore coat: Uniqlo. Earrings: Chan Luu.

I love how playful it feels.
It’s funny, my mom was like, ‘I dressed you in only primary colors for the first few years of your life!’ She wanted me to be free of gender constraints, so that was her plan. When looking at baby photos, I realized I still wear the same outfits today: overalls and red hats!

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Mya’s early days of wearing primary colors.

Are there particular moods you ascribe to each color?
Red is having a moment right now, and it makes me feel confident. If you’re wearing red, you’re definitely going to get noticed. And I was once told that wearing yellow makes people think you’re friendly. So, I’ve always had yellow in my closet for interviews or moments where I want to come across as approachable.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Sunglasses: Crap Eyewear. Sweater: Brandy Melville, no longer available, similar. T-shirt: Cotton:On. Flats: “Salvatore Ferragamo, purchased secondhand from Poshmark,” similar. Skirt: Comptoir des Cotonniers, no longer available, similar. Bag: “An artisan’s bag purchased in Colombia. This is the store and a similar bag.”

You seem to feel good in your clothes. Were there any tough moments in the evolution of your style?
In early college, I was in my ‘baddie’ era. The Kardashians were big, and I was trying to emulate them, trying to achieve this unattainable body, and really dressing for the male gaze. But I never achieved the confidence that I was hoping for. Now, even though I would sometimes consider my clothes frumpy, I feel so confident. I’m dressing for myself.

Sunglasses: Crap Eyewear. Sweater: Brandy Melville, no longer available, similar. T-shirt: Cotton:On. Flats: “Salvatore Ferragamo, purchased secondhand from Poshmark,” similar. Skirt: Comptoir des Cotonniers, no longer available, similar. Bag: “An artisan’s bag purchased in Cartagena, Colombia. This is the store & a similar bag.”

You modify some of your vintage pieces. Can you tell us about that?
If I see an expensive piece from, say, Reformation, I’ll try to find something similar and have it modified to resemble what Reformation is doing. For example, I’m seeing a lot of new boatneck linen dresses going around right now. But there were millions made in the ‘90s! Everyone’s mom was wearing them! I found a bunch on Poshmark for like $10 and had them hemmed into boatneck minidresses for a fraction of the price.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Dress: thrifted. Boots: “thrifted from Poshmark, they’re Frye.” Sweater: Nikki Chasen.

What’s one of your best vintage scores?
My Frye boots! They’re $500, but I got them on Poshmark for $100. I searched for two years before finally finding them in my size — they’re my prized possession.

What makes them great?
Mine already had quite a bit of wear when I bought them and I’ve been wearing them for three years, nonstop. They’re still in incredible condition. Frye is meticulous about construction. Plus, they’re just so comfortable. I always bring them when I travel, since they’re a great statement boot. I sound like I work for the company!

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Dress on Mya: thrifted, similar. Boots: “thrifted from Poshmark, but they’re Frye.”

I love a strong endorsement. Let’s talk bags.
Bags are a great way to elevate an outfit. You can find a nice, inexpensive, secondhand bag for like 10 bucks if you dig around. And I’m Mexican, so any time I go back to Mexico, I also pick up a bunch of market totes.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Pants: Shaina Mote. Overshirt: Comptoir des Cotonnier, no longer available, similar. Ring and watch: “They were my great grandmothers.” Clogs: Plasticana. Glasses: Moscot. Socks: Red Castle Heritage.

You used to work in a corporate office. What did you wear there?
Workwear is very, very expensive, so I looked for it on Poshmark and eBay. You can find a perfect cashmere sweater for $15 by browsing Poshmark for 10 minutes. I search by material — cashmere, silk, and linen — and also search the brands that people sleep on, like Banana Republic, Express, and Ann Taylor, which making great pieces in the ‘90s and early 2000s.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Pants: Shaina Mote. Overshirt: Comptoir des Cotonnier, no longer available, similar. Ring and watch: “Passed down from my great grandmother.” Clogs: Plasticana. Socks: Red Castle Heritage.

You also wear nice neutrals. Do you have a favorite white T-shirt?
People swear by $70 or $100 white T-shirts. I will never spend that much on a T-shirt. To me, a white T-shirt should be under $20. I want to live my life and drink my coffee without having a meltdown about a stain. I’m not sure it’s the perfect one, but I do really like Cotton:On’s shirts because they’re affordable, good quality, and soft.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Ring and watch: “Passed down from my great grandmother.” Pants: Shaina Mote. Overshirt: Comptoir des Cotonnier, no longer available, similar.

You wear your great-grandmother’s jewelry. Tell me about her.
She grew up dirt poor, but when she finally had money to spend, she loved shopping. We used to go to the mall together every weekend. She passed away two years ago, and in the years leading up to her death, she started slowly giving me jewelry that she wanted me to have. Most was costume jewelry, but she gave me this diamond and ruby ring [above]. My great-grandfather designed and made it.

Let’s talk about denim. How do you like your Uniqlo jeans?
Uniqlo jeans tend to have thinner denim compared to the other brands I like. (Nudie Jeans makes the best denim ever.) But a slightly thinner denim is nice for the summer months.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Jeans: Uniqlo. Sweater: Nikki Chasin. Top: “thrifted white cotton dress that I had hemmed into a tunic/mini dress,” similar. Kitten heels: Jeffrey Campbell.

Do you feel like you’ll dress in primary colors forever — or does it feel like a phase and maybe they’ll be a pink and green phase in the future?
I feel like I’ve come into my personal style, and this is the way I would like to dress for the rest of my life. That said, I can see these colors adapting and growing with me. Maybe the red turns into a maroon or burgundy. Maybe the blue turns into navy. These colors just make me feel good.

Week of Outfits: Mya Gelber

Thanks so much for sharing, Mya! Follow her on Instagram, if you’d like.

P.S. More women share their weeks of outfits, including a writer with very cool shoes and a business woman who loves dresses.

(Photos by Julia Robbs, except Mya’s childhood photos, courtesy of Mya.)

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