Whether she's going to a nightclub or a class, Barbara Eibe likes to stand out in a crowd. As a teen-ager, that meant dying her hair black and wearing combat boots. At 22, she's adopted a more sophisticated style, often blending retro and modern looks.
Regardless of what she wears, Ms. Eibel, a senior at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, says she has to stretch her shopping dollar. Her philosophy: It's not what you spend but how you shop.
How would you sum up your style?
It's a new take on the look of the 1920s. I'll wear wide-legged pantswith Doc Martens and a shirt that looks like something Katharine Hepburn wore in "Woman of the Year." Most everything I have is a floral print or polka dot, although most of my pants are solids. It's an alternative kind of look, but it's somewhat modern. In the spring and summer, I also like to wear rompers.
What's your all-time favorite outfit?
I have this romper that has van Gogh sunflowers all over it. It's really vibrant, and the colors are really rich. It's like a jumpsuit, but it has no defined waist.
Where do you shop?
I like to buy a few things from Tweeds' catalog. I go to the Gap or the Limited, but I'm very selective about what I buy. I'm a real bargain shopper. I'll also go to vintage stores sometimes.
What about your clothing mistakes?
Sometimes I buy something dressy on impulse. It will sit in my closet for a long time, because I don't get dressed up that often. Now I have a lot of suits -- fitted jackets with pleated skirts or pants. I bought these MC Hammer-type pants that have this baggy front and back. But when I wear them, I always feel funny. They make me look big.
In high school, I used to wear these grandmotherly dresses with fishnet stockings. And everything had to be black or plaid. A lot of my friends were dressing the same way, but my parents thought I was strange.
It didn't compliment me. It was fun, but I like the way I dress now. I try to look classier.
What's the biggest hassle about getting dressed in the morning?
Finding the right shoes. Most of my shoes are black. I have Doc Martens and one pair of heels. I wish I had more variety. I seem to have plenty of clothes to wear, but sometimes when I get down to the accessories I have trouble.
Who would you most like to see in something you own? And what would it be?
I'd like to help dress some of the characters from "Beverly Hills 90210." I don't want to cut on their style, but it would be nice to see them dress hipper. They're too all-American. I'd like to see Brenda in my wide-legged polka-dot pants.
If we stopped by on a Saturday night, what would you be wearing?
A red jacket with a black-and-white shirt tucked into a pair of black jeans.
You've gone from dressing punk to retro. What's next?
Since I'll be graduating soon, I'll have to succumb to dressing for the real world. I don't mind wearing dresses as long as I can keep some sense of style. But if I have to wear heels every day, that will definitely bother me.
Do you know some dressers? Let us know. Write to Mary Corey, The Baltimore Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.