The idea for the latest installment of Out of the Box came from a casual comment photographer Meredith Jenks made to her friend, stylist Rachael Wang. Jenks — whose clients range from Nike to Nordstrom to Nylon — wanted to do a story about the way teenagers tend to dress in high school, when their identities are constantly shifting and experimentation is the norm. Wang thought the concept was brilliant because it’s so closely aligned with what’s happening on the runway.
“With the likes of Alessandro Michele now at Gucci, J.W. Anderson driving Loewe, and John Galliano at the helm of Maison Margiela, never before have the runways unanimously dictated a more eccentric personalized look,” Wang tells the Cut. “To me it felt reminiscent of the spontaneous, creative, and whimsical way high-school students get dressed, and with that fearlessness of youth in mind, I cast four women with strong individual style to interpret the best of pre-fall.” Three out of the four women featured aren’t professional models, but they all have a powerful sense of self that comes through in photographs — Jenks actually scoured Instagram to find them.
Click the slideshow below to see how the two friends pulled together a tribute to youth, eccentricity, and refusing to play by the rules.
Makeup: Katie Mellinger. Hair: Andrita Renee. Models: Raven Lyn Corneil at Women, Elizabeth Ammerman, Sasha Frolova, and Mari Guidicelli.