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Spotlight Intro: Counterpoint

With the shift of each season comes the question of what fashion mask to put on next. Will I be sporty this season, or more subdued? Pastels or paillettes? The options are generally endless and this Spring is no exception. In response, stylists Justin Reis and Christen Mitchell faced off with an interpretation of this season's strongest trends. Pastels, fringe, tribal patterns, sportswear, the new work wardrobe, and an under the sea influence were the trends our stylists took to the trenches. After the style off, Justin and Christen waived their white flags and sat down to discuss their take on Spring's trends and the state of Boston fashion. Check out their thoughts after the jump.

What is your favorite item from this shoot?
Out of my selects? The pastel Proenza top.  Hands down.  That collection caused major fashion freak outs, you know the ones I mean. 
Out of your pieces? I loved the orange Rag + Bone blazer. 

Out of mine? Easily the For Love Of Lemons black dress with cut outs.  
Out of yours? Your tribal dress

What are your thoughts on Boston style?
Christen: There are some amazingly creative people with stunning style in Boston, but when I first arrive off the boat it was really hard to find those people. I think Boston is starving for color. It seems like people feel really safe in what they are wearing and they just keep rocking different variations of the same outfit. Shake it up people. In my mind it is better to take a risk that could fail than stick with the same old thing.

Justin: Boston style is funny. There's definitely too many uniforms that people in Boston seem to wear. I also think that people are willing to spend but just don't know where to spend it. Yes, Saks and Neimans are great but I think there's a lot more options out there that people over look. Look at Dress, Stel's, and Flock. They're carrying things that no one else is and in most cases it's not going to break the bank. There's just too much monotony in Boston. Whether it's through color, fabrics, designer, whatever, people need to shake it up! 

What is the most difficult trend for spring?
Justin: Under the Sea, definitely.  It's such a bizarre trend, but I love it! Chanel and McQueen did it best and I know so many people (read: everyone but me) don't really get it but I think it's so refreshing. It's fashion being fantasy again and I think after the last few seasons of minimalism and 50s silhouettes, we need it. It's not something that can be easily incorporated into the modern woman's wardrobe and I think that's causing people to shy away from it.    

Whats your favorite trend for spring?
Justin: Hmm, aside from Under the Sea I'd have to say I'm really into the whole 'sporty couture' thing that was going on.  For years designers like Alex Wang have been doing it but we finally saw it explode in a major way at shows like Altuzarra and Stella McCartney.  I think it is a trend so that is so uniquely American and really hope that people embrace it.  If you can make true sportswear look chic, you're okay in my book.

What trend do you think you'll be wearing most this Spring?
Christen: Fringe duh! I just went to New Mexico and snagged tons of amazing items with fringe dangling everywhere.

How did you give fringe a conservative flair?
Justin: Years of practice and New England upbringing.  I just don't get fringe.  

Why are your girls so buttoned up? 
Justin: Ha, they are not! I think all of my girls seem to look like that because I love interpretations on the classic oxford shirt.  That Proenza top in pastels is the perfect example.  At it's core, it's technically an oxford.  Then you add the chiffon, the pastels, the raw hem, the fish + eye hooks, and the whole shirt transforms.  It becomes womanly.  That transformation is something that is exclusive to womenswear, the ability to take such a staple in the wardrobe and go all these amazing places with it - that's what I respond to.  

Christen, who would you love to see wearing your c|a|m jewelry line?

Christen: Can I include everyone? Off the top of my head I would probably say Vanessa Hudgens or Rachel Bilson. The new stuff is crazy colorful and I like it best with just a t-shirt and jeans and some other stacked bracelets which both girls rock. What about you Justin?

Justin: Probably, someone major like Taylor Tomasi Hill. But also the good Boston crowd, let's get this going! 

How can Boston spice up their often dull and simple work wardrobe?
Justin: Color! It is so easy yet people shy away from it.  I loved your work look because it was so vibrant.  There's some weird stigma in Boston that workplace color is inappropriate but I find that absolutely insane. Colored pieces are so widely available in such a variety of prices there is really no excuse to not have it in your wardrobe.  I mean, yes, I would love to say Boston can spice up their work wardrobe by buying classic pieces in new fabrications like the almost neoprene Marni jacket I shot but I get that not everyone is spending 1200 on a jacket.   

What look of mine would be the easiest for you to wear? The hardest?
Christen: The tribal dress would be my jam for sure. The hardest thing for me to wear would be anything that has the top button buttoned or is zipped up to my chin. It makes me suffocate thinking about it.

What trend would you like to see in Boston?
Justin: You know, I don't think I can pinpoint one specific trend. I guess I just wish people had more of a style. In Boston you've got your internationals, your preps, your students, your club-goers, your bloggers and there's this uniformity that each of them subscribe to. People just need to embrace the idea of individual style. Boston has a surprisingly great shopping scene once you take the time to seek out the right places.  There's no reason to follow the masses and avoid personal style. Like, I just refuse to believe everyone in Boston loves Barbours.   

How would you describe my style?

Justin’s take on Christen: It's a toss up between fearless and comfortable, and at times fearlessly comfortable. I love the risks you take in what you wear, and love that it's a total melting pot of trends and places and ideals. I never know what I'm going to see you in next and that's what makes style exciting. 

Christen’s take on Justin: New England swag. Its colorful and fun and I feel like its how we'd like to see men in Boston dress. Nothing crazy (most days) but well put together and tasteful while taking some chances.

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