Style

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor

Writer and Clever editor Nora Taylor has two modes when it comes to style. “I fluctuate between wearing all black and wearing colors like a funky poetry professor,” she says. Here she shares five outfits she wore in a week…

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor

Dress: Selva Negra. Boots: Doc Martens. Glasses: Zenni Optical. Bracelet: from Colombia.

“This dress is from my sister-in-law’s company, Selva Negra. She and her partner, Kristen, run it; they’re both Latina women. It’s a higher price point, but they know all the sewers and pay them well; they use dead-stock fabric and mindfully source their materials. I love the cut and patterns of their clothing, and they’re expanding their clothing sizes, as well.”

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor

Dress: Thrifted in Minnesota, similar. Boots: Universal Standard, similar. Glasses: SEE Eyewear, similar. Earrings: Emily Zirimis.

“At the beginning of quarantine, I gave myself the gift of not setting an alarm. But when it comes to clothing, I’m more regimented. I always put on a bra in the morning — it helps turn my brain on. I also try to separate my ‘sleeping’ soft clothes and ‘hanging out’ soft clothes. There’s some form of getting dressed every day.”

Shirt: limited edition by André 3000. Jeans: ASOS. Shoes: A life X Adidas.

“André 3000 released these shirts after George Floyd was murdered this summer. I was quarantining in Chicago with my brother and his wife and it felt like a miracle that we were all together — young Black and brown people together — deciding whether or not it was safe to go out. Considering the climate of the time, we decided to get them. I gravitated toward this one.”

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor

Glasses: Zenni Optical. Gold bamboo earrings: Old H&M, similar. Necklace: Thrilling. ‘N’ necklace: Demure and Dainty. Gold watch ring: flea market in Wisconsin, similar.

“Big earrings were a thing I started wearing senior year of high school. It was 2005, and I was tall and chubby. Everyone was wearing low-rise jeans and polos and nothing looked good on me, and then I started wearing big earrings and it felt right. I got this watch ring at an outdoor flea market in Wisconsin about a decade ago. It doesn’t work and even though I’m not handy I always thought I would fix it myself. It’s the most unique thing I own.”

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor Shirt: Thrifted in Florida, similar. Jumpsuit: Universal Standard. Socks: Bombas. Shoes: Birkenstocks. Glasses: Zenni Optical. Mask: Diop. Charm bracelet: Formerly mom’s.

“This jumpsuit is the comfiest, softest thing in the world. It’s perfect to toss on in the morning, whether I’m going to the bank or to work out later. When we go back into the world, it would be amazing for a yoga class because I wouldn’t have to wonder if my butt is covered. I gained weight during quarantine and the impulse was to hide my body, but now I lounge around in it like, ‘This is what I look like now and I’m comfortable.’”

A Week of Outfits: Nora Taylor Dress: Selva Negra. Shoes: A Life X Adidas. Glasses: Zenni Optical. Earrings: TITS Amsterdam.

“I was a Little House on the Prairie nerd and also had one of those American Girl dolls that you could dress like. I used to fully dress up along with my Addy doll and go to the farmer’s market with my mom, hold a basket and be like, ‘I picked these turnips myself!’ This dress feels like a grown up, sexier version of that and I’m obsessed with it.”

Thank you so much, Nora!

P.S. More women share their weeks of outfits, including an Afrofuturist curator and a beauty editor.

(Photos by Christine Han for Cup of Jo.)

  1. Kathryn says...

    Nora, your style is so fun and inspiring!

  2. I’m kinda obsessed with her! She seems like someone I would love to know in real life!

  3. Amy says...

    Love Nora’s style and voice! Thanks for featuring her!

  4. carla says...

    I love this, I love women who are a bit more free about what they wear. Especially as I get older

  5. Jean says...

    Beautiful!

  6. Eleanor says...

    Love this so much!

  7. Love me some Nora Taylor. We worked together for a bit at Apartment Therapy and no one ever compared to her cleverness. ::heart eyes::

  8. Courtney says...

    Yay! Love Nora so much and so happy to see her featured here!!

  9. Jenny says...

    You are so pretty!!!!!!
    And so cool!!!!!!!!!!

  10. Alisyn says...

    Grown up, sexy Little House on The Prairie nerds to the front! ❤️

  11. April says...

    Great smile! Love that thrift shop dress.

  12. emily says...

    Wow, so good! One of my favorite outfits posts and what an incredibly effective ad for Zenni. Love the thrifted black dress, the Addy dress (I can see the book cover in my head), and the Andre 3000 sweatshirt the most.

    Nora’s personality comes through so strongly–exactly the elegant and effortlessly cool vibe I aspire to :)

  13. Allie says...

    Nora, thank you for this fun week of clothes! In every picture, I just kept thinking “she looks so happy!” “so looks to so kind!”

  14. Laura G. says...

    the description of the last outfit gives me heart eyes! love her looks, and especially her glasses game!

  15. Caitlin says...

    Commenting solely to say that I didn’t know how much I needed to see someone else wandering around in Universal Standard comfy gear, socks and sandals. I see you and I feel seen. Doing the same thing in Detroit today xoxo

  16. Cait says...

    Oh, what a smile! I love all of the outfits and it really tickles me how different each one is. Sometimes people seem to have such a cohesive style, and I tend to jump around a lot, so I love seeing someone who does a bunch of different things and looks happy and confident in all of it.
    Also yay for American Girl! I was in an American Girls history club as a kid and it was the best thing ever. My daughter is getting into it now and I think about starting something similar someday (we studied one ‘girl’s’ time period each year).
    One of my favorite ethical brands, which also uses a lot of deadstock fabric, is Elegantees. Their clothes are great basics with good quality, and employ women rescued from trafficking in Nepal. They employ people in NYC sometimes to continue providing for the workers in Nepal despite covid – they’re the real deal as far as purpose. The owner lives in my neighborhood!

    • Rachel says...

      Thank you for telling us about Elegantees! I love their shirts and am buying one right now :)

  17. Mikayla says...

    I’m obsessed with this series. Every time I see a new one I scroll through the post and take each outfit in like a work of art. I love how thoughtfully these women claim their identities through clothes and jewelry, and how consciously they pick pieces based on their values. They’ve inspired me to love my body, take a closer look at thrift stores, and define beauty by what a person does and not their waistline. Thank you so much, CoJ. Can’t wait for the next one!

  18. anni says...

    yep, this is a really good one!

  19. Suzanne says...

    I’m just here for the shop called TITS.

  20. Jessie says...

    Her style seems so playful, effortless, and chic! I’m so inspired when people are so creative with their looks as I am regularly in jeans and a tee. She just seems so free! Loved seeing her style.

  21. Annie says...

    I love her unique style, especially all the fun glasses.

    • Christina says...

      This is a great one! I love her glasses.

  22. Sarah says...

    Yes! Love seeing a woman with fun eyeglass fashion!!

  23. Ashley says...

    Now I’m thinking I need a pair of green Docs…

  24. Lauren says...

    I love the story of dressing up like Addy at the Farmer’s Market! I had Samantha’s school dress, and when I was 11, I decided it was time to wear it one last time before I outgrew it. I wore it to school and everyone asked me if I was dressed as a pilgrim for Thanksgiving. I was so shocked not everyone was as into American Girl as I was. Also, they didn’t even accurately date my outfit. – it was clearly Victorian era, ha! I just stumbled out a, “Oh yes. It’s for Thanksgiving.” in embarrassment!

    • Court says...

      Lauren, we are kindred spirits. I had the Felicity doll and wore the mauve dress WITH A FLORAL APRON one Fall for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas that year. Halloween seemed acceptable, but I specifically remember my mom kind of shrugging when I didn’t want to wear a Christmas dress to church and I wanted to wear my Felicity getup.

    • Mindi says...

      Totally wore my hair looped in braids like Kirsten until I was in 5th grade…oh wait, I’m 41 and wore a crown of braids today! Some loves never die.

  25. Lauren E. says...

    THOSE GLASSES. I am in love.

  26. J. says...

    I felt so seen and warm from the “this is what my body looks like now and I’m comfortable” as I am …entirely new to an inkling of that thought but which I feel like quarantining has surprisingly more of. I also laughed out loud at Addy and “I picked these turnips myself!” — I often pretended I, like Felicity, was responsible for starting revolution by galloping around my backyard whispering [forming] state secrets (??) or Molly tapdancing for WWII victory! Thank you for sharing – you are gorgeous, I loved each and every outfit, and seem like you would be a really fun friend!!!!

    • erin says...

      I was going to make the same comment! I feel so seen by the slow move from the initial annoyance with my quarantine weight to “this is what my body looks like now” in a gorgeous stretchy bodysuit! Nora, you are sexy and funny and iconic!

  27. E says...

    I too have sleep-comfy clothes and day-comfy clothes, but I hate hate hate bras!

  28. Melissa says...

    As a person who sews, I prefer the term sewer to seamstress when describing myself, so I didn’t even think twice to see it in text. But your comment about reading “sewer” as in “NYC drains” had me howling.

    • joss says...

      I think ‘sewist’ is a very common alternative to sewer, as it is reads more clearly..avoids any stinky confusion

    • Jen says...

      I am compelled to comment.

      Every night my daughter gives me a story title for me to create a tale for her, tonight was “X and the broken pillowcase.” (X being a recurring character we have created, and our secret “:)

      As the pillowcase was broken our hero needed to make way to someone to repair it. I made a point of making the magic “sewist” a gentleman, but I could not think of the proper word and called him a “seamster,” throughout the story…

      Happy to, later this night, come across the right words by chance.

  29. J. says...

    I felt so seen and warm from the “this is what my body looks like now and I’m comfortable” as I am …entirely new to an inkling of that thought but which I feel like quarantining has surprisingly more of. I also laughed out loud at Addy and “I picked these turnips myself!” — I often pretended I, like Felicity, was responsible for starting revolution by galloping around my backyard whispering [forming] state secrets (??) or Molly tapdancing for WWII victory! Thank you for sharing – you are gorgeous, I loved each and every outfit, and seem like you would be a really fun friend!!!!

  30. Amrita says...

    I loved all her looks, and especially that first pic in her yellow dress and green boots. Gorgeous!

  31. Hayley B says...

    DAMN that thrifted black dress with super cute gold buttons is everything!!! Love how it fits on you, Nora!

    Aside to CoJ team: perhaps you might want to replace the word “sewers” with “seamstresses” in the interest of clarity? If attempting to avoid using weighted gender specific terms, how about “workers”? When I first read the sentence I thought wait, they know all the sewers as in NYC drains?! And then my brain finished the rest of the sentence and processed the context and was like, OHH. Still, it seemed a little jarring and took me out of the “enjoying all the fashion mentions” train of thought. Just a note!

    • Emily L says...

      HA! I didn’t even think about “sewers” in terms of drains but can understand the confusion. “Sewer” is a gender neutral term, where as “seamstress” would refer specifically to a woman who sews. There’s a glove company in my town with both men and women who sew! To me, “worker” isn’t specific to that industry and would refer to literally anyone who works. Oh the English language…too many words that mean multiple things. I think I’ve seen the word “sewist” start to be used – maybe that’s a solution!

  32. anne says...

    I love Nora’s style, thanks so much for sharing! I’m starting a piggy bank fund for one of the Selva Negra jumpsuits!!

    Ok, question to to the community… I am always like 2 clicks away from ordering that Universal Standard Unitard… it looks amazing, and like exactly what I want this winter.. but question for anyone who has it, do you wear a bra with it? is there a sneaky shelf bra or something that I can’t find on the website??

    • Kim Rhodes says...

      Hi, Anne!
      Nora actually mentioned to me that you can wear it with or without a bra! Options! Hope this helps! xoxo

  33. Jill Kelly says...

    She is NOT WRONG about the Universal Standard Bodysuit. It is incredible. It’s not hot, not compressive, just so comfy. I live in mine!

  34. Vero says...

    Love this week of outfits and her perspectives. And especially that Selva Negra dress. Love clothes that are gorgeous and ethical.

  35. AMK says...

    Ahhh gorgeous!!!! And that last dress is soo beautiful!!! It looks soo soo beautiful on Nora!

  36. Katie says...

    The Addy dress!! For all fellow American Girl fans, PLEASE listen to the podcast American Girls. It’s brilliant and hilarious. https://www.americangirlspod.com/

  37. Erica says...

    Gorgeous. Also, yes to the bra every AM, and distinguishing pjs from lounging clothes. XO

    • Kat O says...

      Some mornings I change out of my gray knit joggers and pink sweatshirt into…my gray linen joggers and a pink sweater :)

  38. Ceridwen says...

    Love this post so much! Love her style and attitude.

  39. Alexis says...

    I love her style and attitude! And also, Selva Negra & See Eyewear. I look forward to this series so much.

  40. Stephanie says...

    I LOVE all the stylish and practical shoe choices here! As someone with foot issues I have to wear study, comfortable shoes all the time so I love seeing these great outfits with stylish and practical shoes. Also, thanks for the introduction to the Selva Negra brand!

  41. Johanna says...

    Nora you have such a warm and friendly energy — I love this week of outfits!

    I also ‘have’ to put a bra in in the morning, even when I’m the only one who is going to see me.

  42. Clare says...

    This is all so beautiful and funky and full of life!

  43. Kara says...

    Extra yes to the part about dressing like your Addy doll!

  44. Sylvie says...

    All super cute but LOVE the dresses!

  45. Mickey says...

    Probably my favorite week of outfits yet! Love to see Universal Standard highlighted. I have turned several friends and loved ones, of all ages and sizes, on to their styles. The quality, inclusivity, and styling is impeccable! Excited to check out Selva Negra as well!

  46. Katie says...

    Nora, you are so beautiful and stylish and fly!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I usually don’t post but I loved this so much I had to. Elegant and cool together is hard. Also love all the thrifted stuff. In love with allllll thiisssssss

  47. Emily L says...

    Love her confidence and her style! I appreciate the reminder to embrace the size we are now and not to hide it.

  48. Shannon says...

    Ooo gorgeous :)

  49. K says...

    Thank you for featuring someone who admitted to gaining weight during quarantine. I did too! I’ve been feeling self-conscious and embarrassed alongside so many people who worked out and lost weight during this time. It’s hard to be kind to your body and see it objectively in this social media-obsessed world.

  50. katie says...

    For all of us feeling the AG nostalgia – have you seen the latest doll from the 80s??! Her bangs are not poofy enough – I can provide better reference.

    I appreciate the delineation between sleep comfy and daytime comfy – that’s me, too. If I designate a shirt now for the sleep pile, I can’t just switch it back willy-nilly.

  51. Lindsay says...

    I immediately scrolled to the bottom of the photo with the clock ring to see where it was from and, damn, a flea market! Now I will forever be haunted by the ring that got away!

    • Bec says...

      Lindsay, you should check the internet! I Googled ‘vintage clock ring’ and lots of unique options popped up on Etsy and elsewhere. I bet you could find similar. Good luck!

  52. Harling says...

    Nora!!!!! What a delight.

  53. Tristen says...

    CONNECTION on living out that American Girl doll prairie fantasy.

    • Cool style.

  54. Claire says...

    She is interesting and beautiful. I love the prairie dress, her red lipstick, and thanks for doing a close up on the jewelry – I am trying (unsuccessfully) to get a closeup look at her charm bracelet (I have always wanted one, and how sweet that it was formerly her mom’s). I love that her style that is infused by finds at thrift shops and flea markets and family connections and gifts.
    I am curious – I’ve seen the term “dead stock fabric” used a lot, but would like to know more about what it is, and where it comes from.

    • liz says...

      dead stock generally means never used or sold, but old. it doesn’t mean that they are not synthetic materials (although they could be all natural) and generally its hard to get information on these types of fabrics because the manufacturers are long gone out of business. could think of it as “recycled” I guess. but not all dead stock is the same!

    • Claire says...

      Thank you, Liz. That is sort of what I figured. Interesting, and it makes sense, about not being able to verify the content. I wonder where people find it?

    • liz says...

      Claire, not sure! I’ve always wondered that myself, especially for folks that get enough deadstock materials to make a product line out of them. I do think though that the availability of so much deadstock just goes to show that our society makes wayyy too much clothes. We can’t even sell it all.

  55. ADDY!! I LOVED my Addy doll. i also dressed like her and read the books over and over. I havent thought about her in years. Great post! :)

  56. Laura says...

    She’s so cool! She reminds me of those cool girls I’d look up to when I was kid.

  57. Cynthia says...

    The references to the American Girl dolls brought back memories of my girls and their dolls.

  58. Megan says...

    American Girl! So good. Loved her style!

  59. AN says...

    “hiders of pain” got me in the head, heart, and gut. Sending love, Nora and all BIPOC family.

  60. a.n. says...

    those glasses in the last pic look STELLAR on her!!!!!

  61. Morgan says...

    You’re SO BEAUTIFUL!!!

  62. Olivia says...

    I loved this post, but especially felt my heart burst at the very end!!! I was the same!! I had a neck to floor full length fleece matching nightgown with my Felicity doll. Couldn’t have picked something less practical for San Diego. Now I know where to get my grown up version :)

  63. Kelly says...

    Amazing, unique style and that American girl reference had me feeling all kinds of nostalgia. :P

  64. K says...

    Feeling nostalgic seeing the first outfit. Such a pair of green Docs were the first shoes I bought myself from my own money (well, pocket money) in my early teens. Loved them and wore them well.
    Love the yellow dress. Summer vibes!

    • Poppy says...

      I am here for the green doc martens! 😁

  65. liz says...

    omg this one is soooo good xoxo. thanks for sharing with us, Nora! you seem super cool

  66. Em says...

    Excellent glasses collection!

    • liz says...

      agree!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      agreed!

    • b says...

      Agreed. I have to wear prescription lenses so my options are limited. I always get fun frames because I can’t see without my glasses, might as well have some fun, but I’ve always wanted to be able to switch it up.