On Turnstile x Converse and Personal Style

Posted: by The Editor

Converse, a timeless brand, dropped shoes this year inspired by Turnstile’s arguably perfect album Glow On. I was stoked on this, because I love the album, love the band, and love an excuse to buy shoes (I also wasn’t mad about their tour merch last year, and really wanted the plushie that had a lot of boys pissed, but I digress). On a rainy, March day in New York, myself (Ryleigh Wann, writer), Madison Van Houten (videographer), and Sarah Knoll (photographer) decided to meet up and have a photoshoot with the Chucks we all bought the second they dropped. So step into style as we dive into Converse’s latest ode to Turnstile, and find some new inspiration for how to rock your pair. 

Describe your personal style in five words or less.

Sarah Knoll: Easy, “effortless,” laid-back.

Madison Van Houten: Grungy, masculine, laid-back.

Ryleigh Wann: Glitter Girl meets Dive Bar.

How did you choose to style the Turnstile shoes?

Sarah: When I saw that Turnstile was coming out with these shoes I was pumped! I wear a lot of black, so initially I wanted the black pair. However, they were sold out in my size so I got the white pair. I actually really like the white pair because it’s not the traditional converse style. It’s really cute with the lyrics on the side and the pink glitter stars. Since they have that pop of color, I wanted to keep some pops of color in my outfits. I chose to wear a super baggy wide leg jean that’s more of a blue tone since I thought that the blue would complement the pink in the shoes. Both outfits included a very baggy oversized sweater. The first was a classic Alice in Chains crew neck and the second was a Beetlejuice-esque navy striped sweater with a lime green trim. I was trying to just tie all of the colors together without feeling like a Jackson Pollock painting. 

Madison: So I got the black high top pair – this is actually the first pair of all black sneakers I’ve owned in a long time! All my others are white or cream. I realized they look better with lighter pants, so I often pair them with my khaki pair of Dickies and then a dark shirt or in this case, this big black bomber jacket that says “Chevrolet” on the back. I found it at a thrift store and love it mostly because it has the name “Bill” stitched on the front. I always wonder about him! Otherwise when I’m trying to dress up more I’ll wear them with a skirt and high socks, but still a t-shirt on top. I’ve gotten so used to wearing t-shirts all the time that I often feel uncomfortable or too dressed up wearing a tighter or differently cut top.

Ryleigh: I picked the white pair because I don’t really own any white shoes, and I thought this would be a good reason to snag some. I love the pink, glittery stars and the lyrics written across the side. I also wanted this pair because two outfits came to mind: one being a pink cardigan I own with bright red hearts on it. I wore that on Valentine’s Day with my Converse and cookie-shaped earrings with pink frosting on them that say “EAT ME”. The second outfit was my pink, sequin jumpsuit that I bought for my 26th birthday party. I haven’t worn the jumpsuit since, but when the time arrives, I can wear the shoes with it.

Does the music you listen to affect what you wear?

Sarah: I don’t think it does. I try to just stay true to myself and whatever I feel like wearing that day. Sometimes my outfits compliment whatever album I’ve been digging lately, but more often than not I just go with whatever feels right in the moment. 

Madison: I spent a lot of time as a kid being mad that boys could just wear t-shirts and jeans every day. I would always save my t-shirts to wear on Friday because they were my favorite. And then going to hardcore shows now, I still continue to be jealous that guys get to wear skate pants and a big shirt and it looks effortlessly cool and they don’t have to overthink their style. So I just started dressing like that, because actually, I can wear that same outfit too. The shirts feel sentimental to me, they remind me of the show, and are an easy way for me to express what I’m passionate about. That with the larger skate pants felt like an easy way to play with my gender expression. Once I leaned into that vibe, I started feeling much more secure about myself, and it feels much easier for me to get dressed in the morning. I can just wear a t-shirt! It’s fine! I occasionally get more dressed up, but that’s saved for like, an arena show at this point. It is kind of funny to go to a gig and see all of us dressed and looking exactly the same though. But that’s subculture I guess!

Ryleigh: I don’t really think so, unless it’s for a show. Like, if I’m going to see Dead and Company for the 11th time, I’m wearing a bucket hat and massive t-shirt. If I’m going to a rave, I’ll wear some leather and fishnets. Besides that, I always joke and say my closet is essentially a costume closet. It’s full of patterns, loud colors, velvet, fur, denim, leather, and animal print. It’s perfect for a heavy metal hippy or someone who likes skirts, band tees, and sweaters. I listen to music mostly on shuffle, so I could go from listening to Sufjan Stevens to Doja Cat to a song from Rocky Horror Picture Show. I guess my wardrobe feels similar—all over the place.

How about working in music? 

Sarah: If I’m at a show my goal is to be comfortable. Since I photograph most of the shows I go to, I always go for something that I can move around in. I don’t like to feel constricted, so no super tight clothes for me. I prefer clothes that make me feel good, or kind of go with the genre of whatever the band is. I don’t see going to a show as a big fashion moment, but more about being comfortable so you can enjoy the show and not have to worry about what you’re wearing affecting your experience. 

Madison: If I’m “working” a show (being a designer, I’m never actually working a show, but I always call it that when I’m networking: meeting some friends or mutuals from the internet for the first time, or talking to a manager or band about a project that they hired me for), I absolutely lean more masculine, into the vibe I was talking about above. Being a non-man in music I sometimes feel worried about presenting myself the right way. It feels easier to wear the big shirt-big pants combo and just blend in with the crowd in that circumstance when I’m shaking some guy’s hand or passing around my Instagram handle.

Ryleigh: For a day job, I work as a copywriter for a British newspaper. I go into the office twice a week and in a room full of business-casual, I wear jeans and “nice” sweaters that still drip in personality. My boss lives in London, so no one is really seeing me, so I’m essentially invisible. If I’m covering a show, I will almost always be in big, flashy earrings or a gaudy jacket (loud color, fur-trimmed sleeves—that kinda thing). Come say hey. 

There’s a lot of discourse around selling out (Taco Bell deals, shoe deals, etc.) which is nonsensethe musicians we love need to get paid. What’s another band/brand collaboration you’d like to see in the future?

Sarah: As much as I don’t need more mugs, I love a good novelty mug or cup. So maybe a Pure Noise x Stanley collab would be cool. I’m also a huge coffee drinker so any coffee collab would be really cool. I think any non-traditional merch could be fun, I have way too many hoodies and tees. 

Madison: We need more accessories and weird pieces in band merch, and I’m also a Dickies stan, I just talked about my skate pants for two paragraphs. I just saw Drug Church had a belt at their most recent table. Give me like a Dickies and Spaced belt collab with the Spaced smiley face logo all over it.

Ryleigh: I still think about that Lana Del Rey/SKIMS campaign. Give me a Lana-inspired bathing suit line for the summer. I want to be in cherries or something that feels like 2010 while I’m laying on the beach. 

Final question: would you wear these in the pit?

Sarah: Depends on the show. I wore these out for a full day of walking and my feet didn’t hurt, so sure. However, I don’t want to scuff them up, so these may be saved for a tamer show. 

Madison: Absolutely not, I like these too much. I have a dedicated pair of “pit shoes” that are old, beat up high-top Vans. They also have the comfy cush inside so that I can jump around for a bit without my thirty year old feet aching.

Ryleigh: I sprayed my white pair with Crep protectant spray (I used to work at Journey’s and sold a ton of this stuff by pouring drinks on my shoes while wearing them) so probably, yeah. That said, I have a wonky ankle so try and stick to ol’ reliable Docs in the pit—I’m all about that ankle support, baby!

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