Style Counsel: Margy Waller

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JUL14_Margy2

Photograph by Annette Navarro

Occupation: Senior Fellow, Topos; Serendipity Director, Art on the Streets
Her Style: Thoughtfully customized

You’re a lawyer who’s made a career in public policy—not the most fashion forward industries. How do you express your  style in such button-downed professions? While studying for the bar and hoping to get a job with Legal Aid, I worked in retail as an assistant buyer—and loved it. But I decided I should give law a shot. So I went to work for Legal Aid—wearing the dresses I bought in retail.

You rode your bike to this interview wearing a dress and clogs, which is impressive. People always want to know if it’s hard to ride in heels, and it’s actually not. I only wear dresses and skirts. I try very hard to buy things that are unique and made in the U.S., and I love customizing.

For example? I found a company, Sven, where you can design your own clogs. You can choose the color of the wood, the color of the suede, the height, everything. I use Etsy as a source because you can customize.

The city’s support of getting artists and performers in public spaces through Art on the Streets seems downright progressive. Do you see other signs of Cincinnati loosening up? When I came to interview for a job with ArtsWave in 2008, I went to the shoe department at Saks to ask if it was necessary for me to wear hose to the interview. They said no, so I didn’t. To me, that was a sign that things in Cincinnati had changed.

Originally published in the July 2014 issue.

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