Fashion Student of the Month: Claire Choi

She may not make a lot of noise, but her outfits give her a voice

Because of her success with Poetry Out Loud, Claire Choi is a well-known name throughout the school. As a regional champion, Choi is beyond comfortable on stage. While she may seem quiet off the stage, her poetry and its recitation give her a powerful voice. However, starting last year, Choi found another way to express herself, but, unlike poetry, this expression follows her on and off the stage.

New to The Lance this year, Fashion Student of the Month was created to recognize students in the community who not only are fashion-conscious but also rock what they wear. Because fashion is subjective and personal, there is no “test” that the Fashion Student of the Month must pass. Rather, the only common denominator among the winners should be confidence and awareness of their wardrobes. Without a doubt, Claire Choi, the inaugural winner of Fashion Student of the Month, embodies both of these traits. Other nominees for this month included junior Adam Attal, senior Sannah Kim, and senior Basil Tweedy. These students were nominated and voted on by the Lance staff.

According to senior Michelle Ma, while Choi may be shy on the outside, her outfits act as her voice. Ma says, “I just feel [her style] speaks volumes about her personality even though she can seem shy at first. I honestly see her every day at lunch and sit next to her, yet still take a good 5 minutes to admire her outfits.”

However, Choi’s friends are not the only ones who have noticed the attention and care Choi gives each of her outfits. After all, Choi says she spends nearly half an hour every night before school to thoroughly analyze and handpick her outfits. Even her classmates have noted this attention to detail. More than her thoughtful choices, they feel they know Choi because her outfits speak so much even though she may not.

Senior Jeeho Yun says, “I only had math last year with Claire, yet I feel like I know her pretty well. Our conversations mostly were limited to math, but her outfits speak for her. When she walks into class with a maroon cloak that runs from her shoulders down to the floor, her choices say a lot.”

Even Choi herself admits that her outfits are true reflections of herself. Moreover, some of the inspiration for her wardrobe comes from one of her favorite Youtube creators, Jenn Im of Clothesencounters. She admires Jenn’s mentality rather than her physical outfit choices. Choi says, “I like that she wears what she wants. I think it is a good message that I try to follow.”

Because her style is such an important part of who she is, she makes sure to focus on each detail even down to the striking gold frames on her glasses or her colorful shoes and hats. She says, “My style really evolved when I started paying more attention to the smaller things. I may not wear hats or notable shoes every day, but they are fun aspects in which I am able to experiment with.”

Because her outfits reflect upon her so much, Choi is not scared to take risks. In fact, she knows her style is predicated on risks. While they may not always pay off, she never stops taking them. Choi says, “There are some days where I do wear the usual jeans and a t-shirt, but there are also days when I take risks with my outfits and experiment with them. When I take those risks and they do not work, I don’t regret what I wore, but instead, I take it as a learning experience.”

This is what makes Claire Choi a deserving Fashion Student of the Month. While her style may be unconventional, because she is aware of the impression of her clothing, Choi still takes risks and is comfortable in her skin. She recognizes and practices that style is “part comfort, part risk, and part confidence.”