Remember Kristina, also known as cybr.grl? We featured her in Vol. 1 Iss. 4: Cyber! So why are we featuring her again, you ask? Well, her style has totally evolved and we absolutely had to ask her why. When Kristina isn’t being featured in things like Barcroft TV’s “Hooked on the Look” or demonstrating her entrepreneurial prowess with her brand Candy Trap and Depop store, she’s being an all-around positive voice encouraging global community spirit with fashion walks and an active social media presence. And she does it all with rainbows and smiles! We sat down with Kristina to talk fashion evolution, Decora, and community life!
When we first featured you, your style was more Cyber-inspired. How has it changed since then?
Drastically, to put it simply. It was like a 0 to 100 change from Cyber neon person to IN YOUR FACE RAINBOW OVERLOAD GOBLIN. I was very inspired during my trip to Japan and had sort of an awakening. When I was still focused on Cyber fashion, I was in a place where I was experimenting with different styles but once I returned to America I found myself through rainbow Decora fashion.
What is it about rainbows and colour that you find so captivating?
Colours are scientifically proven to affect the human psyche and I think that it’s so fascinating. I love the way that different colours make me feel and I love putting them all together into a rainbow because rainbows symbolize many powerful life lessons. For example, the rainbow is comprised of seven different colours and each of these colours is vibrant and beautiful. This conveys a beautiful message of inclusiveness and cohesion. It demonstrates how beautiful diversity can be. Also, rainbows are often seen after a rainstorm when the sun breaks through the clouds. It shows us that good and beautiful things often follow the darkest storms.
A lot of people find styling with colour a challenge. Has it always come naturally to you?
I don’t think I came out of the womb naturally able to style a lot of clashing colours together but I definitely attribute the ease that I have with styling them to two things. One, I’ve always had an interest in art and because of that I learned colour theory and the visual effects of specific colour combinations. And second of all, the clothes that my mom would dress me in growing up really stuck with me. She’s quite a stylish woman and I am indebted to her for instilling that in me. Pinterest boards help a ton, too!
What tips would you offer someone who is just starting out in Decora fashion?
Just go for it! Often times we feel nervous about trying something new because we want to get it right, but the best way to learn is through doing the thing and sort of practicing the best way to style pieces together. It can also be very nerve-wracking because there are so many components to Decora fashion, like the multitude of accessories and layers. But how I overcame that fear was by looking at people already involved in the Decora fashion community like Haruka Kurebayashi or Creamy Sauce and trying to follow how they would usually style their looks. Typically, it would be a brightly-coloured shirt tucked into a tutu skirt with some knee-high socks and platform shoes. So I started out with that formula and once I got the hang of it, I started experimenting with different silhouettes and colour combinations, which was really fun!
What are your design inspirations?
90s to early 2000s Japanese anime, manga, magazines, and pop culture. The dream-like memories of childhood. The positive effect that colours have on human beings.
You’ve become a really integral part of the global community! What does being a part of it mean to you?
Being a part of this amazing community is so, so important to me. As humans we have that innate need to connect with others and to find our chosen family and I’ve definitely found my family through this global community. Because of that I want to continue encouraging others to try out Harajuku fashion and welcome them with open arms to our big J-fashion family!
In our last interview with you, you said your future goal was to “stay happy and to share that happiness with others!” We all know that life is full of challenges but you always have such an upbeat personality! What is your secret?
As someone who struggles with mental health issues, it’s important for me to have coping mechanisms in place so that I can continue to reach that goal. There are many resources online to find healthy coping skills but for me personally, listing things I’m grateful for everyday, looking at pictures that remind me of the people, places, and things that bring me joy, cleaning a small area of my house, getting some bubble tea with a friend at a chill café, etc. It’s important to find your own coping skills because everyone is different so experiment and find which ones help you and in turn it will help you emotionally, spiritually, and even physically in the long run.
Any last words?
DON’T LET YOUR FASHION DREAMS STAY DREAMS.
In the words of Shia LaBeouf’s extremely loud motivational speech, “Do it. Just. Do. It.”
Introduction and questions by Cora.