Glimpsed at ArtWalk at MICA: Sam Graebner

May 21, 2010|By Sloane Brown, Special to The Baltimore Sun

Sam Graebner likes to get creative when putting her outfits together. The 22-year-old Bolton Hill resident is graduating from the Maryland Institute College of Art. And her personal style? "Sort of eclectic and whatever I can get my hands on." She said her style was inspired by her childhood. "I was born in Greenwich Village, and I would see all these crazy people walking around. I always thought that was the best thing ever."

The look: Black-and-white gingham, puffed-sleeve cotton dress. Black fitted cotton jacket. Black cutout leather earrings. Black leather Carolina work boots. Olive canvas gas mask bag. Avocado and cream silk shoulder handbag. Silver and marcasite rings.

Where it came from: She found the dress at H&M. Her H&M jacket was a hand-me-down from a friend. Her earrings were a gift. She bought the boots "somewhere in Federal Hill." The gas mask bag — which she uses as a backpack — was an Army-Navy Store find. She made the shoulder bag from a tie. The rings were her grandmother's.

How she shops: "I usually go to the thrift store. I like to look for patterns that catch my eye. ... I have always been interested in making my own clothing, and if I find something in a thrift store that looks like I can alter it, I'll get it and alter it. ... I've gotten shirts — shirts that were really oversized — and turned them into dresses. ... Sometimes, I mimic fashions that I see around, but I try to do it for a lot cheaper."

Her fashion go-tos: "I'll wear a fancier black cowl-neck tank top that has crossed straps in the back, with my corduroy overalls. And when I put them together and put a necklace with it, it looks dressier. ... As an art student, I was generally wearing things I didn't mind getting dirty. But lately, I've been wearing more dresses because the weather's nicer. ... I like to be comfortable, but I also like to look good."

Keeping it simple: "I try not to own too many accessories because I don't want to keep track of them. I have five or six necklaces. ... I like quality over quantity. I'm kind of the same way with scarves. I don't have that many, but I like the ones I've got. Sometimes I like to wear a colorful scarf, if I'm wearing all black or minimal color in the outfit."

If her closet were on fire, she'd rescue: "Probably my overalls. …They were from a thrift store. They were a kid's size, so I had to make the straps longer. ... Now, they look kind of fitted. There's a white dress that I've had forever. It's a little bit old-fashioned, not lacy. ... It has an extra layer that makes it more billowy at the bottom."

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