Womenswear Wednesdays: Dancer Sarrah Jane Brooks on her transforming style
All photos by Mauricio Rocha.
When it comes to personal style, some people find genres and labels limiting. One of those is local dancer and aspiring fashion designer Sarrah Jane Brooks, who likes to take inspiration from unexpected places to craft her own look. That look changes depending on her mood and the occasion. Keep reading to find out what inspired Brooks's cheetah print and red ensemble, what dances she studied, and what she keeps in her purse.
Name: Sarrah Jane Brooks.
Spotted at: 15th and Larimer streets
Profession: Classically trained dancer and fashion designer. I can dance ballet, jazz, hip-hop and ballroom. I'm going to attend the Art Institute of Colorado for fashion design in the summer.
Favorite film: I have several -- 500 Days of Summer, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. Sin City and Forrest Gump.
2013 Jam: " White Diamonds," by Friendly Fires.
Style inspirations/icons: Everyone. Today I'm inspired by a cross between retro rockabilly and Breakfast at Tiffany's. I like Rihanna and the show Fashion Police as well. My style can change from day to day, though --from punk-rock to bohemian-art chic. I love New York fashion, too. Some days I can be inspired by something as simple as a tree. Tokyo and Paris street styles are inspiring, too.
Favorite color: I like how black, white and red look all together.
Favorite accessory: Sunglasses and bracelets. I have ten pairs of sunglasses.
Style mantra: Wear what you mean, and mean what you wear. You're what sells the outfit. I believe weirdness is a side effect of awesomeness. It's fun to be different.
Shops at: Everywhere: H&M, Urban Outfitters, Forever 21 and Michael Kors if I was balling out of control.
This is Brooks's gold necklace that matches her earrings; it depicts the face of a lion. "I've been dancing since I was four. I moved here from California when I was four as well," she says. "I used to help design costumes and sew my own pointe shoes when I was growing up."
Brooks created these custom-made gloves that she layered for the outfit. "I love how red and cheetah print look together," she says. "I like clothes that have personality and tell a story when you see them."
These red boots with gold buckles match her gold pants and channel the glam gods of the '70s, like Bowie and Mercury. Brooks picked the pair up at Forever 21. "Colorado, the square state, is a melting pot for all styles. We have people from all coasts here," Brooks says.
See what's in Sarrah Jane Brooks's purse on page 2!
When we spotted Brooks on Larimer Street, she agreed to show us some of the items in her tan bag to tell a story about who she is. We have Gucci Flora lotion, a floral-printed planner and pink pen, a neon pink and green duct tape-covered cell phone, Louis Vuitton wallet, gloves, compact and tortoise shell shades. The photos are from the 1970s, when Brooks's mother was a model. "My mom is a big inspiration when it comes to my style. She's always very fashionable," says Brooks.
Style analysis: While many stick to one look, Brooks jumps around to express herself. As with her dancing career, her street fashion can vary from ballroom to jazz, from hip-hop to punk to rockabilly. She uses fashion as a method to express her personality and share her story. Even her lipstick is in line with her gold, red and cheetah motif -- a checkerboard of red and cheetah print. She takes inspiration from everywhere and is unafraid to be different.
Never let the constraints of one genre limit your fashion possibilities, Denver.
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