I’ve made it halfway through my busy couple of weeks. Even though my semester is over, I still have to move out, pack for my trips this month, and complete some forms before I board the cruise ship.
I think the worst thing is going to be moving out, because I don’t know exactly what day I’m moving, and when I do move, I have to move everything up to the third floor of my new building.
Luckily, I made my goal of pretty much having my whole apartment packed up by this past Friday. I had a little motivation to get it all done because one of my good friends wanted me to go to Jacksonville, Florida for the weekend to visit.
The vibes and fashion there were not what I expected at all, and I want to share my experience with you babes.
Jacksonville is only about two and a half hours south of Tallahassee, so it wasn’t a bad drive. I was really excited to go because one, I’ve never really been, and two, I hadn’t seen my friend, Maggie, all summer.
Even though it’s still a Florida town and I didn’t travel that far, I experienced a little bit of a culture shock. To my surprise, Jacksonville’s vibe is a beachy southern. It makes sense since it’s in north Florida and known for having amazing beaches, but I thought it would be more diverse than it was.
I’m so used to seeing a lot of other people with a similar style as me when I’m out and about, but in Jacksonville I stuck out like a sore thumb. Tallahassee is pretty southern too, so I was used to that vibe, but because it’s a big college town there’s styles on all points of the spectrum.
On Friday night, we went to one of the many bars that were on the beach. While I was neither over or under dressed in my black floral trousers, black v neck, black booties, and choker, I definitely stood out in the crowd.
Almost all of the girls there were wearing daisy dukes and flowy tank tops. If they weren’t they were wearing sundresses or jeans and a brightly colored blouse. I’m used to seeing ranges of different styles in both Tallahassee and my hometown, Orlando, Florida, but out of the whole bar, I was the only person in an indie influenced outfit.
A couple of people even came up to me and said “where are you from? I can tell you aren’t from here.” The good thing is that I didn’t feel self-conscious and rocked what I had on. It was just a weird experience being the only one in a room with a certain type of style.
At first I thought it was partly because we were on the beach, because I know that beach town styles are generally more laid back, but I stood out at a local grocery store too.
The next day we went to get coffee and pick up some things at Publix. If you’re a Floridian, you know the lost feeling of walking into a Publix that’s not “your Publix.” Not only was this not “my Publix,” but again I was the odd one out in a maxi dress with Aztec designs on it.
It wasn’t just my clothes that stood out either. My hair and makeup was another giveaway that I wasn’t a local. The majority of hair colors were natural browns and blondes paired with natural looking makeup. Silver hair sticks out anyway, but where I live seeing other people with silver and other funky colors isn’t uncommon. On top of having an “exotic” hair color, my everyday makeup is more on the bold side. Even the guys were clean cut and dressed preppier too, I hardly saw any bushy beards or man buns.
I didn’t look like an alien all weekend though. Saturday afternoon we headed over to St. Augustine, a cute town that was only 25 minutes away from Maggie’s house. I was really excited because the last, and only, time I had been was for a 4th grade field trip.
Since it’s a historical town and somewhat touristy, I saw the wide range of styles that I’m used to seeing at home. I fit right in in a button down denim skirt and a tan cowl neck shirt. I even got a couple of compliments on my outfit.
Saturday night we went bar hoping on the “hipster” side of Jacksonville. I was happy to see the bohemian styles and bold hair and makeup that I didn’t see anywhere else in the city. Just like in St. Augustine, I blended into the crowd while sporting black wide leg pants and a black crop top.
I was still dressed slightly differently than everyone in general, but not as much as before. One thing I noticed in both parts of town was that high waisted clothing was rare. If you know me, or have read some of my previous posts, you know that I live for high waisted anything.
I wasn’t ashamed or embarrassed that I was wearing something hardly anyone else was, but it was definitely strange having a different look when it would be considered normal, or even basic, where I live.
I actually enjoyed the experience and it made me want to go exploring in cities all over America. I already knew that certain states and cities had different overall vibes, but I never really thought about how it affects the major styles or how I would look different compared to everyone else living there.
I also never really thought about the fact that not every city has the really diverse populations that I’m used to. Of course you can find a range of styles anywhere, some are just more dominant than others.
What is the vibe like in your town? Have you ever felt like you looked out of place while visiting somewhere?
dress well. eat well. live well.