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Tara Graves, A Passion for Fashion

Tara Graves. (Photo Courtesy of Tara Graves)

Tara Graves is a manager of the local Chicos FAS, a fashion store.  Graves has been with Chicos since 2011 and has been working in the Springfield, Mo. store since 2013, although her passion for fashion has been lifelong.  In a recent interview with The Scoop, Graves talks about how fashion has evolved and how it has impacted her life.

Why do you stay involved in the rapidly evolving fashion world?

I love fashion and it has always been a great outlet for me.  For example, I have always wanted to sit down and be able to draw/paint but I’m not really artistic in that sense, but fashion gives me a way to be creative.  I have always had the passion for clothes and in a way it has been a therapy outlet for me in times of need.  The fun thing for me is exploring a multitude of styles and seeing how fashion has evolved over the years while still appreciating all the different interpretations.

What do you feel like fashion does for the community?

I think fashion is a big part of the community.  We have numerous local businesses and boutiques that intertwine throughout the community.  I have learned that the fashion community is a very “tight-knit world”, where everybody knows everybody, like that of a family.  In Springfield, we have many fashion shows through different organizations that are well known in our area and recognized by others.  I have built some really great relationships throughout the years and met people that will be in my life forever all because of fashion.

How do you react to the “rules of fashion” many people believe are set in stone?

I can proudly tell you now there are no rules and that is very hard for many people to grasp when entering into retail.  Especially with the age group I work with on a day-to-day basis, ages 50-65, that have this mental rule book in the back of their mind are beginning to expand and accept the changes.  Many people are caught off-guard by these rules when in reality it is really cool that you can do whatever you want with fashion, giving you endless freedom.  I will say that I really love how Pinterest has effected the fashion world and how it really brings together past and present that lends the opportunity to be creative and be able to save and reference them later.

What would be your advice to someone who wants to start exploring fashion?

Be willing to go through change because fashion is always evolving, and one thing I’ve learned from my experience is to always try new things.  You have to be able to think outside the box and more importantly be willing to accept the change and freedom fashion allows.




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