The Demure Muse: An Interview with Katrina

by Katherine Boury, Seattle Goodwill
September 16, 2014

Katrina, of the Demure Muse, is originally from Toronto and recently moved to the Pacific Northwest for work.  She started the Demure Muse blog as a creative outlet from her day job and now posts about her inspiration, do-it-yourself projects, and personal style.  She talks with us about some of her favorite thrift finds.

How would you define your style? 
My style is a mix of menswear inspired with edgy finishes. I really enjoy simple silhouettes with unexpected accessorizing.

You are from Canada. Is there a difference between style in Toronto and in the Northwest?
Most definitely! I feel like PNW style is much more relaxed and anything goes. It's probably most evident on a night out around the town. I would've never been able to go out in a pair of comfy flats and a t-shirt back in Toronto, where the expectation is to get dolled up. Don't get me wrong-- it's still fun to get dolled up from time to time, but it's nice to be able to go out in comfy clothes and still have an awesome time. 

How did you start thrift shopping?
I grew up thrifting with one of my favorite people in this world, my grandma. Growing up, I would spend at least a week of my summer vacation with my grandparents. On our way to the fresh vegetable markets (which is one of the top things I miss the most about Toronto, to this day), we would pass by a Goodwill and always stop in to see what goodies were being rotated on the racks. My favorite find for her was this beautiful pastel-colored silk-like jacket with a watercolor pattern. It's been more than a decade since we thrifted that together and it's still in her closet! 

What is your favorite thrift find?
My favorite thrift find has to be a vintage Coach stewardess cross-body bag. I had been eyeing these bags online for the longest time, but a new one just wasn't in my budget. I found a vintage one in perfect condition (and at 10% of the price of a new one) and quickly added it to my bag collection. It was the first thing that caught my eye on my first visit to the SLU (South Lake Union) Goodwill location. Since that find, the SLU location has become my favorite for finding hidden gems between the racks.

What is a wardrobe basic for you?
I'm all about the accessories, which I think make or break an outfit. I'd have to say a perfectly-fitted white t-shirt is a wardrobe basic MUST!

You highlight some DIY on your blog. Do you ever shop at Goodwill for projects?
I do! Goodwill is perfect for finding supplies for DIY projects. I usually get inspired by the things that I find between the hangers while thrifting and that's how the project ideas are born. Plus, the prices are perfect for trial and error projects. I've definitely had a handful of clothing reconstructions go awry and didn't feel too bad about it because the materials would've cost at least double the price elsewhere. 

You post fashion and some DIY on your blog. Why kind of feedback do you receive from your readers and does it shape your style at all?
With a limited clothing budget, I like to get creative and DIY a lot of pieces that I feel will be one-off, non-basics, for trends that I'm currently lusting over but know will not become long-term pieces in my wardrobe. I think my readers have similar budget constraints and we often trade ideas over the DIYs posted. It's always fun to learn about how similar (or not) I am to those who come to read the DIYs.

I originally started my blog as a way to document all the nifty places I visited when first moving to Seattle. At the time, I was reading a lot of style blogs and decided to participate in Kendi Everyday's 30x30 remix (taking 30 pieces, including shoes, and creating 30 outfits). It was a really nerve wracking experience to post outfits because I felt like I didn't have a particularly special opinion when it came to clothes. I still don't feel like I do, to be honest. It's been a learning experience to find out what works and what doesn't for me and I love the fact that the blogging community is as inclusive and supportive as it is!

Who inspires you?
I think after being a blog reader for a while, I would have to say the other women whose blogs that I read are some of the most inspiring. It's so interesting to hear about the balance they find in their lives while also sharing style advice and how much fashion plays into their day-to-day lives. 


Katherine Boury is the Communications Manager at Seattle Goodwill.

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