Quad Style: Yuna Song
Hi I’m Yuna Song, a fourth-year Environmental Studies and Visual Arts double major. My spirit animal is a grandma from the 80s. My hobbies include weaving, sewing, embroidering, and watching the Great British Bakeoff, all at the same time. I work as a Policy Intern for sustainability and resilience at City Hall, and on campus as a Communications Manager and barista at Ex Libris. Fourth year has been r o u g h and I’ve dropped all my RSOs this year except Phoenix Sustainability Initiative, for which I’m the Treasurer. I wish I were brave enough to get a tattoo, but honestly I can’t see that happening for at least another 43 years.
How would you describe your personal style?
Tan France (love of my life) from Queer Eye once said: “Style is dressing the way you feel confident, and what is appropriate for you, your age, and body type.” For better or for worse, as long as I feel good wearing it, I’ll take it. As a result, my personal style changes drastically on a daily basis, depending on how I want to present myself to the world, but more importantly, to myself.
For the longest time, I tried so hard to find that “one thing” that would define my style, something that would make me “unique.” But at some point, I sort of threw my metaphorical hands up in the air; there’s just too much fun to be had with fashion to walk down just one road. Consequently, I would define my personal style through my lack of personal style–give me a beret, corduroy overalls, and a Hawaiian shirt, and I swear I’ll make it work and make it my own.
Where do you find style inspiration?
I’ve noticed that I’m unconsciously but strongly affected by color palettes. I’ll be wondering why I feel so pleased about my outfit despite the horrible wind threatening to rip it all off, when I realize that it’s because I managed to wear different shades of mustard from literally head to toe. It’s a good day when I can sneak in my favorite color combination of all three primary colors, but subtly; a red turtleneck, faded mom jeans, and a pair of mustard socks. I also love to wear an outfit consisting solely of black and white, and to finish with a singular accessory of a vibrant color, like a pair of baby blue studs or a bright red beret.
Where do you like to shop?
After I fell deep down the rabbit hole of the magical universe of thrifting, I grimace any time I spend more than five dollars on a piece of clothing. Village Discount Outlet is my no-brainer, go-to place to thrift. I have a bottomless well of physical and mental stamina for thrifting (why can’t I say the same for writing my thesis…?) and during finals week last spring quarter, went thrifting three times in one week (would not recommend). If you’re thinking of going, I advise you to wear leggings and a tight shirt so that you can try on things over your clothes as there is no fitting room, and to take the time to really look at each article of clothing on the rack.
Do you have any fashion regrets?
No regrets anymore. As a teenager, I was morbidly embarrassed of my childhood fashion choices. But now, I can proudly admit to wearing purple velvet bellbottoms in the sixth grade. That was definitely when I peaked.
What is your relationship to fashion? Why is fashion important to you?
Last year during winter quarter, I took an Independent Study course to learn more about the impact of the fast fashion industry on the environment. I was shocked to learn that in addition to the unsustainable ravaging of natural resources, the low price tags and “deals” on mass produced garments distract consumers from the harsh reality of the circumstances of female garment workers in developing countries.
This year, I’m writing my B.A. thesis on the slow fashion movement in comparison to the values and practices of fast fashion at the levels of production, retail, and post-purchase. Sustainable fashion is still a personal work in progress, and I have so much more to learn, but I see myself viewing fashion as a field of great potential for change in terms of environmental conservation, human rights, and gender equality.