The Activist Who's Never Without Her Patch-Covered Jean Jacket

Patty's a field organizer for Elizabeth Warren (coolest!) living in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Though she's young, she's "lived many lives, from a stint in New York as a fashion design student and media intern for a modeling agency, to CMO of a student-run non-profit, to social justice activist on campus at my (second) alma mater, UNC." No matter what persona she's trying on, her wardrobe remains consistently low key: "I’d describe my personal style as tomboy femme," she says. "I love a t-shirt and a good pair of jeans, and can’t seem to get enough sneakers—but I’m picky about quality and have kind of a complicated relationship with fast fashion." Instead, she favors sustainable brands like Allbirds and Everlane.

"Shopping is and has always been an important part of my self-care," she adds. "Since I was a kid, going to the mall with my mom to try stuff on was and still is a huge bonding activity for us, and when I was a Tumblr kid, I documented my purchases under the tag shopaholic on my blog."

Though she's no longer active on Tumblr (RIP Tumblr), Patty documented her latest purchases for us here.

Allbirds Runners

"I have two pairs of these: I bought a limited colorway, pink wool, ahead of a networking trip to London with my journalism school and have worn the shit out of them since. I love pink as a neutral. It’s particularly fun to play with it when I’m not necessarily sticking to super femme silhouettes or vibes in general. This past summer, I bought the tree runners, made of plant fiber, in a gorgeous dark purple shade at their Chicago store. I’m a big fan of brands that prioritize sustainability and transparency, and if there’s one thing I learned from going to FIT and making bags and shoes for two years, it’s that you should always invest in good shoes. Bad shoes aren’t just painful and kind of a nuisance—they literally can f*ck up your posture and your balance. Allbirds are really durable and relatively supportive for a lifestyle sneaker. I can throw these in the wash when I get stuff on them (I used to be a barista; lots of coffee stains) and they sell extra laces and insoles for when those get beat up."

BUY: $95 at Allbirds

Everlane Boxy T-shirt Dress 

"I absolutely love t-shirt dresses: they’re feminine without trying too hard, you can dress them up or down, and once you find a silhouette you like, you can buy the same dress in a bunch of colors. I have the same Everlane t-shirt dress in both black and white and red and white rugby stripes. Everlane is one of my favorite brands out there right now: they make luxury quality basics at radically transparent price points. They lay out the cost of their goods on each product page and an estimate of the traditional retail price. The best part about these is that Everlane makes the same t-shirt dress in a boxy tee silhouette and I have a couple of those, too. I think this winter I’m gonna experiment with layering these over some mock neck long-sleeve tees, since they tend to be a good summer staple, but I haven’t schemed how to transition them to colder weather just yet."

BUY: $50 at Everlane

Gap Icon Denim Jacket 

"I've collected patches and pins for a few years now and it took me a long time to find the perfect denim jacket to commit to. I’m glad I waited for a good one, and I’m not surprised I ended up with one from the Gap. It’s one of me and my mom’s favorite places. I have a big Drawbertson patch of a pair of red lips on the back of this jacket, patches from traveling to London and Medellín and Los Angeles, ones I bought at Rumors in Chapel Hill—all kinds of stuff. Lately I’ve been layering a Uniqlo compact ultra light down jacket underneath it: the denim jacket covers the down jacket perfectly and it’s a pretty solid combo for days spent out knocking doors and talking to caucus-goers."

BUY: $70 at Gap

Herschel Dawson Backpack 

"I bought this bag for my last semester of college because I knew I’d be traveling (I went to Colombia to work on a documentary in the spring) and it’s been a hit. I like the number and placement of the pockets on this one, and I’ve always favored a drawstring and flap combo over zippers, which are so much more likely to catch on stuff or get jacked up. In general I’m a fan of Herschel’s silhouettes and craftsmanship—this is a backpack that can keep up without being fussy or obtrusive, but I still get compliments on it. The flap on mine is covered in enamel pins and buttons, mostly related to my activism. I can’t seem to find my colorway online, but the one I have is a really nice dark teal."

BUY: $70 at Hershel

Tiffany Airplane Charm 

"I can’t physically bring myself to write a list of my can’t-live-withouts without including the little plane I’ve worn almost every day for the past 10 years. My first birthday after moving to the U.S. was my fifteenth, which tends to be a big one for a lot of Latinx cultures, including Venezuelan culture. I didn’t get a huge quinceañera, partly because that was never my vibe but also because we had just moved to a new country and I didn’t exactly know a ton of people or have my extended family around to make it a huge deal. Instead, one day my mom and I wandered into the Tiffany store at the mall in Boca Raton, Florida as a half-joke and I walked out with this little plane. The propellers on it actually spin, which is pretty neat, and for the past two years I’ve worn it on a plain silver chain I bought at Greenwich Market in London."

Buy: $150 at Tiffany

Leuchtturm1917 Bullet Journal 

"I’ve bullet journaled on and off for the past three or four years—I try not to be too fussy about it, so I go through phases of using it a ton and then weeks where I don’t touch it. Since I started organizing for a living, though, it’s become an indispensable tool. I make daily checklists, weekly spreads with my benchmarks, and monthly calendars to help me visualize my work. I saw this particular bujo really highly recommended by a bunch of websites so I went with it. The pages are pre-numbered and there’s a blank table of contents at the front that comes in handy. It also has a pocket at the back where I keep sticker sheets. Definitely get the dotted one!"

BUY: $20 at Leuchtturm1917

Follow Patty at @thepattymatos

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