New Yorkers are donning colorful post-pandemic summer looks
This summer, the fashion forecast is flashy.
With more than half of New Yorkers now fully vaccinated, fab fashionistas are shedding their drab pandemic duds and slipping into vibrant attire in celebration of the season.
“It’s over for the gray and black sweats,” Gabriella Lascano, 30, told The Post.
The Bronx fashion influencer is ditching her joggers for electric orange and strawberry-pink glad rags.
“Being able to get sexy in colorful clothes again ignites my spirit.”
Here, six stylish New Yorkers show off their re-opening regalia.
After a year of minding her teenage niece and toddler nephew, Keyana “Keekz” Aird is ready to let her fun fashion flag fly. “I’m definitely ready to break out of these sweatsuits and T-shirts and get into some silky slip-dresses,” said Keekz, 26. But she’s not ditching all the sporty touches we’ve all grown to know and love this past year: She’s planning on pairing those dresses with Stan Smith kicks.
The Bed-Stuy native and influencer describes her aesthetic as tomboy-chic, and plans to hit rooftop restaurants and outdoor lounges in bold pieces with a comfy twist. Her stop-and-stare style will feature trendy orange and pink statement pieces from Zara paired with gear from Nike. But she’s not beholden to one kind of look: “I never want to feel like I’m obligated to dress like a girly-girl all the time,” she said. “Whether I want to do sneakers or heels, it’s up to me. I’m not bound by gender rules of fashion. I do what I want.”
Before the pandemic, 20-year-old Rutgers student Haley Konopka’s wardrobe was full of “basic” black shirts and blue jeans. But when everyone was stuck indoors, she started “wearing things I usually wouldn’t,” Konopka told The Post. “I wasn’t really seeing anybody, so no one would be able to judge me.”
A year ago she started trying pastel suits, cutout zebra-print crop tops and groovy checkerboard trousers paired with punchy purses (like the $72 purple hobo above, from JW Pei). It resulted in a newfound confidence in rocking bold styles, and Konopka is never going back. Now she’s in bloom: Her Instagram, where Konopka has nearly 17,000 followers, is filled with her vibrant, patterned looks from thrift stores and trendy outfitters like Zara (those psychedelic pants are $50). “Now I look into my closet, and I have red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. It makes me happy,” she said.
The Y2K slay
Gabriella Lascano’s radiant raiment recently earned her an Instagram follow from Rihanna.
“Rihanna is such a badass,” she said. “She does whatever she wants in fashion and in music, and that motivates me to do the same with my style.”
Lascano’s poppy looks are inspired by a not-so-bygone era. “I’m all about the Y2K style trend that’s taking over right now,” the social-media tastemaker with more than 400,000 followers said of the over-the-top style popularized by the likes of Paris Hilton in her heyday. “Me and my girls will be giving Spice Girls vibes in sexy little red rompers or lilac backless dresses.”
Lascano — a full-figure model who rocks a size 18 or 20 in outfits from Fashion Nova and Forever 21 — wants women with a little more “junk in the trunk” to ditch the notion that they have to spend the summer wearing the dark-colored clothes they sported throughout the pandemic.
“Don’t feel like you have to hide your curves in black,” she advised anyone who gained some extra poundage during quarantine. “Don’t wear black just so you can look thinner. Show off in some color, so you can look happy.”
With a husband, seven kids, five dogs and 10 chickens, Belmar, New Jersey, mom Faith Ann Razzino-Rogers couldn’t wait for lockdown to come to an end.
“I spent a lot of time cooped up in the house wearing pajamas and flip-flops,” the 43-year-old said. “I just felt so blah.” Ready to resume date nights on the beach with her hubby, Alex, in March, Razzino-Rogers — who has four biological kids and three stepchildren between the ages of 15 and 25 — did a summertime wardrobe overhaul, dumping her dumpy PJs for colorful crop tops, bodysuits and monokinis from fast-fashion shops Shein or H&M.
“Moms can sometimes fall into a frumpy rut,” Razzino-Rogers noted, adding that she’s maintained a 75-pound weight loss through intermittent fasting for over five years. “But I’ve learned that in order to best take care of everybody else, I have to take care of myself. And for me, that means dressing up to look good and feeling even better.”
The luxury lover
Scientist and content creator Rakhee Sachdeva used the pandemic to invest in sustainable outfits from shops such as Theory, Project Gaia NYC and Manhattan-based shoe brand Sarah Flint that she knows will stand the test of time, rather than buying super-trendy fast-fashion pieces. “My money was going instantly in the garbage,” the mom of one, 40, told The Post. “I would wear things once.”
Although she does rock bright pieces, she’s also stepped up her practical neutrals, like this playful-yet-polished plaid Alice + Olivia romper ($225). She loves to play with brooches to add a touch of sparkle (she sports a Chanel pin with many of her looks), and recently treated herself to some timeless jewelry from Cartier. “I want a little bit of an edge, but not drastically that [the pieces] won’t work in the long run,” she said.
For Brooklyn body-positivity promoter Alissa Wilson, skin is in, quarantine cover-ups are out. “In order to make up for the summer we lost last year, I’m turning my fashion all the way up,” Wilson, 38, said. “I’m letting these legs out in some sexy midi dresses. I’m showing off my arms with some strapless or one-shoulder tops.”
But don’t underestimate the power of a strong, bright blazer. “It’s all about showing a little skin while keeping it classy,” the mom of one said. And the plus-size digital content creator from Dumbo is encouraging women of all frames and figures to embellish their summer ensembles with neons, pastels and polychromatic prints. “Color can brighten up somebody’s day just by looking at it,” Wilson said, adding that she loves to show off in swag from Eloquii and Lane Bryant’s line of ready-to-wear designs. “I want to bring a little sunshine to everybody’s day while I’m strutting down these city streets.”