It’s back! And this time it features me, my girlfriend of three months, Taylor, and our combined (excessive) wardrobe. We met on Hinge in the midst of the pandemic—yes, love in pandemia!—which led to novel-length text messages, breathless phone calls starting at 5 p.m. and ending when the sun came up, and now a committed relationship. In terms of gay girl clichés we may have ticked every box, but our connection still feels singular.
Taylor has such a keen eye for style, which is something that immediately drew me to her when she stepped out of the car she had driven five hours to see me for the first time on that hot July day. If I were to describe it, though I find it hard to pin down, I’d say it’s like a chic, genderless senior citizen. (She okay-ed me saying that.) She’s unapologetic about the way she wears things and how they represent her. And she always tells me she loves my style, too, even though it includes pieces she wouldn’t necessarily choose herself.
For this exercise, because we don’t find ourselves getting dressed every day for work, we decided we had to make our own fun. Categories! And this time we decided to dress each other. Enjoy the fruits of our (very enjoyable) labor:
Reimagining That “First Look” Moment
Amalie: Yes, just like when Bride 1 turns the corner and Bride 2 looks at her, the first time we met was after a period of FERVID talking and texting, so our first greeting was emotional. When I first saw her and ran into her arms, I felt like she looked magical. The edgy elements of her outfit (Black socks and black shoes in 90 degree heat? Men’s tank, pants, and shirt?) with the singular way she lopes gave me a little heartbeat in my fingers. When I offered to have us recreate what a normal “first date” look would have been, I didn’t change a thing because I wouldn’t. (Get some wine for that cheese.)
Taylor: Amalie is the absolute woman of my dreams. If you’ve ever imagined your dreamy steamboat, end-game type of romance, that is what surged through me the moment I laid eyes on her. I was honestly stunned by her the first time I saw her. She was wearing Birkenstocks, bike shorts, and a high neck white tank. To reinterpret that first day look, I stuck with the bike shorts because, hot, and then chose a silky shirt that I love from her closet. And strappy heels because, why not? I’ve only ever heard my heartbeat in such isolation in fight-or-flight scenarios.
The Gays Go to Home Depot
Amalie: We have gone to Home Depot twice in the past three months, which is more than I’ve gone there in the past five years. Taylor is extremely handy—skills she learned from her beloved grandfather—and she insisted on redoing the insides of the closets in my new apartment. There is a strong indication that we will be going back in the near future, as the Depot is a place where she feels at Home (lol). So, with “home improvement” as our theme, I dressed her in the (very cool) look that she wore while drilling into drywall this past weekend: Carhartt bib overalls, a Colette x Free & Easy tee, and her Nike Air Force 1s. Honestly, I should have thrown some pencils and screws into her front pocket.
Taylor: Home improvement plans, Home Depot and the third-floor walk-up apartment situation boils down to needing durable clothing that covers as much skin as possible. Practicality is key when you’re doing stuff like this. So, I put Amalie in a comfortable, secure denim outfit with these crazy moon boots she owns to combat any potential mishaps. I chose pieces that allow enough room for comfort and support, but not enough room for one to become lethargic and/or lazy.
Nice Curbside Dinner (An Oxymoron?)
Amalie: For this look, I wanted to really dress Taylor up. She said specifically that I couldn’t put her in a literal dress, so I opted for the most gussied-up pants and top combination I had in my closet. The silk shirt is one that I’ve never felt great about on myself, and when she put it on, it was an instant yes. She said she felt like herself in the tailored pants, too. BUT, when I put the snakeskin boots in front of her she gave me a little skeptical sidelong glance. I told her to trust. All good relationships have that, u know? It’s a new phenomenon (and a privilege, I recognize) for me to be able to share clothes with a partner. It makes me actually beam to see her look so good in my clothing. I thought she looked jaw-droppingly lovely in this.
Taylor: I love how we differ in our sense of styles: Amalie likes loud, eccentric patterns, whereas I tend to veer more on the simpler, monochromatic side of the closet. For this look, I wanted to maintain aspects of her eccentricity through muted yet unconventional elements: an oversized blazer, white boots, red lipstick and a sheer patterned top. I settled on something more “muted” because I wanted her natural beauty to be front row.
Pack a Bag, We’re Going to Ft. Greene Park
Amalie: I’ll be the first to admit I may have done too much with Taylor’s look, here. But I couldn’t help myself! There were too many things I wanted to pack into one. First of all, she’s been wearing turtle- and mock necks since I met her in the dead heat of July. She says she wears them all year long, and I love that. So there had to be a turtle. Then, a button-down. She owns a whole fleet of oversized button-downs she inherited from her grandparents, which I would define as her “signature.” Then, of course, her Carhartt jeans that make her butt look squeezable (too much?) and her blue glasses, which are my kryptonite. Without fail, there is a baseball cap, too. This is how Taylor dresses most days, which is to say: adorable. Perfect.
Taylor: For this look I chose garments to tribute Amalie’s ability to effortlessly appear fully put together and polished while still being comfortable. As someone who already came with a deep affinity towards clothing, I admire this about her as much as I find it completely irresistible. I also really love the pair of jeans she’s wearing in this look and am someone who always tends to reserve statement pieces for larger scale occasions rather than, say, a day in the park. I appreciate how thoughtful Amalie is with her stylistic choices—she has no reservations, and makes the most of every opportunity. She puts her clothes on display to the fullest in a way that I believe outwardly is extremely desirable (too much?) Amalie loves to mix and match patterns and also has a shoe game that truly competes with any closet scene from MTV Cribs. Given the mix and match of shoe:pant, I leaned on something more simple for her top, which shows off Amalie’s her beautiful frame. I added a forest green bag, for the sake of practicality. One of my favorite things about Amalie is how she creates a contagious, optimistic energy and an immediate sense of inclusion in the environments she occupies, even through her clothing. I feel like this look accomplishes that.
Is Matching Cringe or Cute?
Amalie: I’ll answer for us both on this one, since I kind of engineered it, lol. I got these Livin’ Cool sweat-short-suits last week and we have both been living (cool?) in them since. At the end of the day, comfort is king, and when we’re sitting at the big table in my living room on folding chairs working all day, it just feels good to lounge. I had Taylor put on a turtleneck under hers to jazz it up and her New Balances. And glasses, always. I’m still not sure what the pulse is on matching with your partner, but trust me when I say this is not something we would ever, like, meet friends in together without a self-deprecating joke or two. But we certainly will canoodle at home!
Overall, thinking about what I learned from this exercise, I guess it’s just that I love what Taylor wears. I feel proud standing next to her. Her closet is different from mine, and yet juxtaposes so nicely with it, that it feels natural. We each have things that we can pull from each other, but for the most part we can simply admire how the other presents without feeling the need to do the same thing. And that’s pretty special.