New Yorkers strut street style

NEW YORK, Sept 5 (Reuters) - New York City is one of the fashion capitals of the world and when it kicks off Fashion Week on September 6 stylists, buyers, fashion enthusiasts and celebrities will be keen to see what has been declared "in style" for the spring and summer seasons.

Off the runway, however, a different story about what is fashionable will be told on the streets of Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx where vintage pieces, unique footwear and comfort are highly favored by people living in the city's boroughs.

In Brooklyn, fashion is identity-driven and liberating, says actor Seth Hatch, who works at a Williamsburg thrift shop.

"Most recently I've been embracing a softer, more feminine side to my fashion," said Hatch while sorting a rack of women's dresses.

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New Yorkers strut street style
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New Yorkers strut street style
Fatou Jobe, 24, a model based in New York, poses for a portrait in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "I'm very in between 1965 and 2030... I love thrifting, but I do walk (model) for big names," Jobe said. "I'm fascinated by the designs and designers. I never thought I would be the type of person to buy expensive clothes... but I'm inspired." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.
Seth Hatch, 24, an actor who works at a thrift shop in Williamsburg, poses for a picture in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "I think everyday is an opportunity to walk outside and feel really great about yourself and to express your personality and your vision through what you're wearing," Hatch said. "I love an androgynous look, something that can go across the board," he added. "Most recently I've been embracing a more softer and more feminine side to my fashion." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Wileen Pagaduan, 35, a freelance artist based in New York, poses for a picture in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "I'm an independent thinker and have never been into the hype with upcoming trends. Frida Kahlo is my muse. I dress for comfort and am inspired from traveling abroad," Pagaduan said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Atticus Stannard, 16, poses for a portrait in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "My style is streetwear mixed with thrift clothes I design," Stannard said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Diondre Cruz, 17, poses for a picture in the Bronx borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. Cruz described his style as unique and said it's what sets him apart from his friends who "dress regular." Instead of mainstream designers, Cruz gets inspiration from rappers like Trippie Red, ASAP Rocky and from Japanese anime characters. "I'm not really big on New York Fashion Week. I kind of just do my own thing. I wear whatever I like," he said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Frederick Reuben, 24, an employee at The Gap, poses for a portrait in the Bronx borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "I wear what I like regardless of how people feel about it," Reuben said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Priti Serchan, 31, an artist and part-time child care provider, poses for a picture in the Queens borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "My style is about trying to be as comfortable as possible and pick out clothes closer to my culture, I'm from Nepal.. I try to mix super thrifty, comfy, traditional, and a bit of modern," Serchan said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Inge Smith, 61, a retired army personnel, poses for a picture in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., August 26, 2018. "I like that older style, you know, classic ladies. My mother used to be a model, so when I look at her pictures, I find inspiration," Smith said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Makiko Oshino, a Nissan employee, poses for a portrait in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "I like black with colour, I like to be different from anyone," Oshino said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Elena Azzaro, 23, a model based in New York, poses for a picture in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "I love Rihanna, she's not afraid to mix it up," Azzaro said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Kristia Tolode, 24, an influencer and model, poses for a portrait wearing a piece by Moshoodat in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., August 25, 2018. "I like bright, bold and fun colours. I like to play a lot with fashion. This piece was created by Moshoodat, the top and crown are made of braids... she wanted me to look regal and powerful... to have the essence of a queen," Tolode said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Therese Grossmeyer, 35, a fine carpenter, poses for a portrait in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "My style is mine, it's definitely mine. I like picking up nuances from what I see other people doing with their clothes and hair and making it my own," Grossmeyer said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Justin Bonhomme, a government contract worker, poses for a portrait in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "What inspires my style is having unique flare but not doing too much. I try to stay within a good budget too," Bonhomme said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Storm Hartley, 20, a student at Tisch School of the Arts, poses for a portrait in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "I buy things from the stores and will never just leave it as it's bought. I will always change it in some way or another, cut it or sew something onto it or paint something on it because I'm an artist," Hartley said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Anwar Thomas, 29, a manager for rap artists and musicians, poses for a portrait in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "Rap artists set all the trends right now for me personally," Thomas said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Nia Indigo, 23, a stylist based in New York, poses for a picture wearing a pair of Louis Vuitton Archlight sneakers in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "I love galleries and stuff and I get inspiration from installations mostly," Indigo said. "I like to look like walking art," she added. "I'm not 100 percent into fast fashion as far as like the cheaper stores that knock off everything. I'm just not really into things that fall apart." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Robert Norman, 37, a street vendor and musician, poses for a picture in the Bronx borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. Norman said he's a very unique person and emphasised the importance of creativity in his style. "Your shoe game gotta be the look from the ground up that's the foundation," he said, referring to his Versace-inspired all white boots with gold charms. "If your shoes are all scuffed up it kills the whole thing. It does the heavy lifting." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Nia Indigo, 23, a stylist based in New York, poses for a picture wearing a pair of Louis Vuitton Archlight sneakers in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "I love galleries and stuff and I get inspiration from installations mostly," Indigo said. "I like to look like walking art," she added. "I'm not 100 percent into fast fashion as far as like the cheaper stores that knock off everything. I'm just not really into things that fall apart." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Justin Bonhomme, a government contract worker, poses for a picture in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "What inspires my style is having unique flare but not doing too much. I try to stay within a good budget too," Bonhomme said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Frederick Reuben, 24, an employee at The Gap, poses for a picture in the Bronx borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "I wear what I like regardless of how people feel about it," Reuben said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Makiko Oshino, a Nissan employee, shows her shoes at the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "I like black with colour, I like to be different from anyone," Oshino said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Josiah Esowe, a photographer based in New York, poses for a picture in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., August 25, 2018. "I make everything, bespoke is my style. I just have one rule in fashion, never wear black," Esowe said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Kat McClanahan, 23, a Merchandising Manager at Aritzia, poses for a portrait in the Manhattan borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "If Lou Reed ever had a daughter, it would be me," McClanahan said. My fashion inspiration is from movies or TV shows I watch ... or music I listen to... I watched Cheers last night so I was thinking about Diane Chambers." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Aziza Nicole, a jewelry designer based in New York, poses for a portrait in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., August 25, 2018. "My style is androgynous, free, moody, fantasy, chic, bohemian, it's just me, honestly," Nicole said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Daniel Silverstein, 29, designer and founder of Zero Waste Daniel, a unisex apparel store in Williamsburg, poses for a picture in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. At Zero Waste Daniel the garments are eco-friendly, handmade pieces created using 100 percent scrap material. Silverstein's goal is to prevent textile pollution and bring awareness to the fast rate of consumption and waste of clothing driven by trends in the fashion industry. "I try to make stuff that is wearable and comfortable, that you can really wear around, that you can really move in, that you can style in different ways that's versatile for your life without contributing to that issue," Silverstein said. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Abby Felix, 23, who works in fashion public relations, poses for a portrait in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 2, 2018. "We have to find a new way to create again," Felix said, adding that the crowds at fashion week have fewer buyers and are mostly journalists and influencers. "The designers are starting to look all the same, there's not a lot of originality." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Kafilah Muhammad, 21, a computer programmer and DJ, poses for a portrait in the Brooklyn borough of New York, U.S., September 3, 2018. "I like to wear how I'm feeling, I like to be comfortable," Muhammad said. "Solange's monochromatic outfits inspire me." REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs SEARCH "STREET STYLE" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
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Abby Felix, a 23-year-old who works in fashion public relations, shops at retail stores such as ASOS.com and American Apparel as well as thrift shops to create a 90's-inspired "eclectic" look. She says one reason for taking an off-beat approach to fashion is that mainstream designers are "starting to all look the same."

"We have to find a new way to create again," Felix said. "There's not a lot of originality."

In Queens, Priti Shercsan, a 31-year-old illustrator from Nepal who follows Nepalese-American fashion designer Prabal Gurung, says she does not pay attention to fashion trends.

"It becomes a lot of waste," Shercsan said. "You get to a point where it doesn't matter and it's more about being comfortable and having your own sense of personal style."

MODISH IN PINK

To the untrained eye, Nia Indigo might look as if she left home wearing a night gown and sneakers, but her appearance is quite intentional.

The 23-year-old stylist's affinity for mixing trendy high-end designer clothing with thrift shop finds led her onto a bustling Brooklyn street in a vibrant pink silk dress and Louis Vuitton Archlight sneakers that retail for more than $1,000.

"I love galleries ... and I get inspiration from installations mostly," Indigo explains while waiting with friends for a table at a popular brunch spot. "I like to look like walking art."

Walking down a lower Manhattan street wearing a white collared blouse, blue jeans and pink suede heels, Kat McClanahan, 23, says she derives her fashion inspiration from film and television characters and music.

"Best way to describe my style: If Lou Reed ever had a daughter, it'd be me," said McClanahan, a merchandising manager.

RECYLCING IN VOGUE

At Zero Waste Daniel, a unisex clothing store in Williamsburg that is the brainchild of Daniel Silverstein, clothes are eco-friendly and made from 100 percent scrap material. Silverstein says he aims to reduce textile pollution and raise awareness about the fast rate of consumption and waste of clothing that is driven by fashion trends.

"I try to make stuff that is wearable and comfortable, that you can wear around and really move in, that you can style in different ways and is versatile for your life without contributing to that issue," Silverstein says while stitching T-shirts on a sewing machine.

In the Bronx, Diondre Cruz, 17, says he sets his style apart from "dressing regular" by tapping into the creativity of Japanese anime characters and rappers like Trippie Redd and A$AP Rocky.

"I'm not really big on New York Fashion Week. I kind of just do my own thing. I wear whatever I like," Cruz said.

Along the Fordham Road shopping strip in the Bronx, Robert Norman, 37, wears an all-white, gothic and western inspired outfit while selling sunglasses on the street. He says a good look starts "from the ground up."

"Your shoe game ... that's the foundation," says Norman while giving a nod to his Versace-inspired white boots with gold charms. "If your shoes are all scuffed up it kills the whole thing. It does the heavy lifting."

Although Fordham Road is not a runway, it is one of the streets New Yorkers strut in all their self-styled glory.

(Reporting by Gina Cherelus Editing by Toni Reinhold)

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