Style Profile: Colin and Emily
In this segment of our ongoing Style Profile series, we take a closer look at the stylish duo behind Harvard’s very own street style blog, Books and Liquor. Hailing respectively from Maine and Singapore, Emily Xie and Colin Teo (both class of 2012) have just as much personal style in front of the lens as they do behind it….
My name is: Colin Teo
When I was 13 I… was quite overweight.
Currently obsessed with: Begonias.
Me in three words: —
Favorite books or authors: Richard Fortey “Trilobites!”
Guilty Pleasure: None, guilt is for the guilty.
My name is: Emily Xie
When I was 13 I… had braces and wore sweatpants. I was a lanky stay-at-home super-nerd, parked in front of the computer playing Age of Empires II (multiplayer online) for days on end, and pwning all n00bz.
Currently obsessed with: 1960’s everything.
Me in three words: In Leverett Library.
Favorite books or authors: 100 Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
Guilty pleasure: Really trashy techno music.
On him: Raf Simmons jacket, Wykidd shirt, Uniqlo pants, thrifted brown bag, Surface to Air belt, Maison Martin Margiela shoes. On her: thrifted dress and bracelets, vintage scarf and shoes, Banana Republic trench, Citizen watch, Urban Outfitters tights.
Any particular style icons?
C: Emily Xie
E: Colin Teo!
What pieces would you say are staples in your wardrobe?
E. Black blazer + sweater tights. And the watch I always wear!
C: My button-downs.
The accessories often make a look. What are your favorites to wear?
C: A mechanical watch which my mum gave me for my 21st.
E: I like huge chunky vintage statement necklaces and outrageously patterned scarves.
It’s date night… What do you wear?
C: An interesting jacket paired with some sort of neckwear. I’m into the more unusual – an ascot perhaps?
E: A dress and a blazer—with a colorful scarf!
Favorite store in the square?
E: Probably Oona’s.
C: None really, but my favorite restaurant is Rialto!
On her: Cole Haan shoes, cardigan from Second Time Around, Zara shirt, thrifted scarf, BDG jeans. On him: Stolen Girlfriends Club shirt, GF Ferre jeans, Haerfest bag.
Are there any special pieces you have picked up on your travels?
E: Indeed! I have a spiral golden ring from Japan that I always wear, as well as some cool gladiator sandals from China.
C: Because I’m from Singapore, the US counts right? I would say all the crazy vintage pieces that I’ve accumulated here are irreplaceable.
Favorite (or least favorite) thing about Harvard style?
C: I feel that students at Harvard tend to splurge on a few common items. For example, Hunter boots rarely look good on most people; the same thing happens with the Le pliage bags. On the other hand, I think there are some extremely uniquely dressed individuals in Harvard who really follow the beat of their own drums.
E: The bowties, probably. You won’t find too many campuses where students walk around with interesting bowties around their neck.
We are big fans of Books and Liquor, the style blog you guys founded and operate… can you tell us a bit about what inspired you guys to start the blog? What have been the most rewarding/most challenging aspects of running the blog? How do you pick who to feature on the blog?
We were inspired to start the blog because we always noticed some of the interesting things students wore on campus, and there weren’t really any style blogs at Harvard…so we decided, why not? And we figured that if we started one, other students may be inspired to dress up more often—and have fun and be more adventurous with their closets!
What’s challenging about the blog? Well, it’s hard to juggle on top of all our classes and coursework—especially as both of us are attempting to write a thesis. The most challenging aspects of running the blog is that—especially during the winter—it can be hard to find students who are dressed up interestingly, which is completely understandable given the stress that we must endure throughout the year; students tend to throw on sweaters and sweatpants, particularly during midterms season or during the paper writing process. But the rewarding aspects definitely outweigh the challenges. It’s awesome to know that students on campus have already heard about the blog without you mentioning it to them. That, and the fact that we’ve inspired other Harvard students to start their own style blogs!
When we pick people to feature on the blog, it is usually an immediate, gut reaction. We see something, and we think “Oh cool!” and then we photograph. Simple as that.
As both of you are seniors, can you tell us a bit about what projects you are working on now and what your plans are for the future?
E: I’m writing a thesis, and I still host my weekly radio jazz radio show on WHRB Harvard Radio Broadcasting. As for plans for the future…well, I guess I’ll find out!
How do you see fashion fitting into your life post Harvard?
E: I really enjoy dressing up in the morning and putting together a matching outfit, so I think I’ll continue to do that.
C: Well maybe not fashion per se, but I think style will always be an important part of anything I’ll do.
On her: H&M shirt, Buffalo Exchange scarf, Goodwill shoes, vintage skirt and necklace. On him: Marc Jacobs shirt, Drifters jacket, Patrizia Pepe waxed jeans.
Photography: Bonnie Wong and Michelle Hu
-Thomas Dai 14′