“Just over one year ago, I traded in my subway pass for Roxie, my pink Schwinn cruiser. She was given to me by my Dutch friend, Kirsten, who bought it off of a Brooklyn-based Haitian voodoo doctor whose colorblind son originally bought it thinking it was blue. One day I was riding through Brooklyn and a teenaged black boy yelled at me as I rode past, ‘Normally I would make fun of a dude riding a big pink bike, but your arms are so big, I don’t wanna mess with you.’”
Baratunde Thurston was photographed in New York City on June 27th. You can follow him on Twitter.
“The moment I saw this ribbon on a goodie bag at a disco party, I decided it would be my lucky ribbon because it was white and satin and beautiful. Sometimes I use it to tie up my hair when I want to dress up a bit fancy for class. One time I took my lucky ribbon to school, and it brought me good luck because it made me have a fabulous day.”
Beatrice was photographed in Montclair, New Jersey, on January 5th.
“One of the things that I’ve kept over the years is a book of classical Greek myths from my grade nine English class that was falling apart by the time I got it. The notes in its margins from past students who borrowed it - beginning in 1976 - seemed like they were just for me. I knew that if I stole it I couldn’t pass it on to the next student but I fell so much in love with it that I had to.”
Christian Lo was photographed in New York City on May 18th. You can follow her on Instagram.
“My dad bought this mask in the olden days before I was alive from a Chinese man with one eyeball who painted it. When I was little I would run past it at night because it looked alive in the dark. Now I like it so much, I even think it will scare bad guys away.”
Raul Andres was photographed in New York City on March 2nd.
“This leather jacket was my father’s and by some grace of God, it fit both of us perfectly. He wore it with aviators and ascots and I wear it with everything—dresses, jeans, nightgowns. A small hole above one pocket got stuck on a metal fence and completely ripped, but I just think of it as an extra pocket."
Morgan Doff was photographed in New York City on August 5th. Here she is on Twitter.
“For my final contortion show at the National Circus School, my director told me, ‘Be different.’ So I saved money (a lot), bought myself a beautiful pair of ballet shoes, and created a choreography that I performed with such pleasure. So yes, I love my ballet shoes.”
“I got my life-sized Pikachu on my fourth birthday from a friend of my Dad’s in Japan. He stays on his tiny bed I made for him at the corner of my bed and he has a wife in my home and they will be having kids soon. I hold him all the time and he helped me feel confident in making new friends when I started school.”
“When I found this vintage Schiaparelli hat - a fashion unicorn - at a vintage shop in the Marais in Paris, I was finishing college and had a lot of self-doubt. I took it as a sign from the universe to keep doing what I love. It doesn’t fit me so I place it around my apartment like a talisman.”
Cara Araneta was photographed in New York City on May 7th. You can follow her on Instagram.
“Six years ago I was on a pebbly beach in Peru, south of Trujillo, and I looked down and saw small pieces of charcoal in the sand - indicating an archaeological site - and this little figure which I dug out with a stick. I call her My Little Peruvian Goddess. She could still be buried in the sand but now she’s free, with me.”
Nick Evangelos was photographed on December 26th in Santa Fe.
“I wore each of these watches one summer during elementary school when I lived in Thailand with my mom and sister. The black one broke shortly after I arrived, and I bought the red cartoon watch when I couldn’t read the traditional Thai numbers on the red-and-black one. Exploring a different culture, meeting new relatives, eating strange food, discovering new fashion, learning new games and songs, and seeing different landscapes at a young age helped to form my perception of the world, and I keep these watches because they remind me of how invaluable those experiences were."
Tassy de Give was photographed in New York City on December 6th. You can follow her on Instagram.