Designers are constantly playing with volume and proportions in an effort to invent new silhouettes. Unfortunately, extremely voluminous shapes, like those seen in the Vivienne Westwood spring 2010 ready-to-wear collection, do not typically transition into everyday wear. Although rail-thin models can pull off the hot air balloon type shapes, the exaggerated proportions do not accentuate the average woman’s shape and instead tend to make them look heavier.

Just when I thought shoulder pads would be the only way the everyday woman would even consider manipulating proportion, I spotted Fashionista Alexandria Chong. She found, and mastered, a way to play with volume while still showing off her figure by wearing sheer fabrics, very reminiscent of Haider Ackermann’s spring 2012 ready-to-wear collection. Although I love combining different textiles, I must admit that I am obsessed with this chiffon-on-chiffon ensemble. Chiffon is often considered a dressy fabric, but Alexandria gave this look a boho feel by using casual cotton and accessorizing with long necklaces and a colorful Arm Party of bracelets. Take a cue from this boho look and feel free to experiment with volume — it’s only natural, after all.

Name: Alexandria Chong

Major: Marketing and Law, Public Relations Minor

Year: Sophomore

CollegeFashionista: Where do you get your style inspiration?

Alexandria Chong: Probably my close friends from home. We tend to dress very similar. It’s a weird thing when you look at someone and you think you could adapt his or her look to your style. Also, I just worked at Topshop over the summer so that was a pretty big influence because I got to meet people from different fashion schools. I also get inspiration from whatever music I am listening to. For example, if I wake up in a M83 mood, I’ll wear a graphic tee and if I wake up in a Rihanna mood, I’ll wear something similar to my outfit today. But mainly I just wake up and pick out an outfit.

CF: What are your go-to stores?

AC: Topshop, Brandy Melville, Urban (especially when they have sales) and H&M if I need something really fast. For jewelry, I go to Etsy. For shoes, Bloomingdales. And when I’m at home in Brooklyn, I go to thrift stores.

CF: Have you seen a major difference in style from Brooklyn to Boston?

AC: It’s a lot more laid back here in Boston. In NYC, you see people with crazy colors. Here, it’s a lot more classic than New York it’s very eccentric. I like NY because everyone’s an individual and people aren’t afraid to be eccentric. In Boston, everyone looks the same.

CF: What would you say your favorite trend of the moment is?

AC: I would say red lipstick, which never really goes out of style. You can put it on with any kind of outfit and it will dress it up super easily. You can transform jeans and a tee from class to become date appropriate by just putting it on. Also, in terms of accessories, I would say mixing different heavy metals and experimenting with the different colors together.

How To: To get this breeze caught in my shirt boho look, start with a basic oversized chiffon shirt and sheer maxi skirt. Add a cotton tank and weigh down the look with a basic leather jacket. To accessorize, layer vintage necklaces and rings and wear an Arm Party — layers upon layers of colorful woven and metal bracelets. Add a pair of sequined flats and voilá, you have conquered the infamous volume dilemma.

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