Dawgs with Fashion: Meghan Colligan

Meghan Colligan talks about her growing homemade earrings business and her creative and artistic style. Photos by Lauren Jindrich.

MADELEINE HALL | HR REPORTER | mghall1@butler.edu

Meghan Colligan, a freshman dance performance major, is rarely seen without a pair of her unique homemade earrings. Recently, she even turned her passion for fashion into a small business. Colligan’s style underscores her creativity and artistic expression, from economical fits to color combinations in ballet lessons.

The Butler Collegian: How would you describe your style?

Meghan Colligan: I don’t know that I follow a certain style, it’s more of a mix of what I feel every day. I try to choose looks that are not that simple, but I would definitely say that color coding is something I like to do with my outfits. For example, today I wore a green sweater vest with green frog stockings, avocado earrings and green clips in my hair.

TBC: What things influence your style?

MC: I like the feeling of wearing unique outfits – in fact, I would say that 75% of my wardrobe is economical. I get a lot of inspiration from things I’ve seen online, but I feel like my style has improved a lot from the quarantine because I had the time. I also embroider a lot of my clothes and make my own earrings!

TBC: Earrings are definitely a staple of your look – how did that come about?

MC: Actually, I’d only had my ears pierced for a little over a year, but I fell in love with fun earrings straight away. I started buying earrings from Etsy and soon started making my own via quarantine last year. Some of my favorite earrings that I have are cubes, avocados, goldfish in a bag, and small glasses with pink pearls inside.

TBC: Can you tell me a little more about your earring business? What is the process? How do you come up with new ideas?

MC: When I started making earrings I mostly used simple pearls, but then I started experimenting with more charms, unique pearls, necklaces, and other items. I would get lots of ideas from Michaels and their pearl selection or online earring stores. Sometimes funny ideas just pop into my head, like these Lego earrings I made. These turned out to be super unique and I only used regular Legos to make them. I keep all of my earrings at one great price, and I’m now offering free shipping to butler students on campus!

TBC: Aside from cost, are there any other reasons that influenced your decision to save more?

MC: Definitely learn about the effects of fast fashion on both the environment and the working conditions that exist for workers. I’ve always been environmentally conscious, avoided plastic, became a vegetarian and have now bought as much of my second-hand clothes as possible. Buying second hand clothing is not only more environmentally friendly, it also results in some of the most unique pieces being found.

TBC: What economical tips do you have?

MC: I would say patience and time. You can’t go to a thrift store and expect to find something right away. You have to spend time searching each rack. Second, don’t look for generically trendy clothes, but for things that you could style into an outfit and add character. If you don’t find something you love the first time, don’t give up. Thrift stores are constantly replenishing clothes, so returning will bring a whole new store in a few days.

TBC: How do you determine which outfit to wear every day?

MC: Honestly it depends on how I feel every day, where I go, what to do when I have dance classes. Sometimes I just put something on when I have to run somewhere, but when I have more time I will think about it more.

TBC: As a dancer, how do you maintain your individuality while adhering to a dress code?

MC: I definitely feel like this one is heavy, but I’m going to build fun clips into my hair, little earrings – we can’t wear big dangling ones to class – and I recently started doing eyeliner. I love fun too [leotards]!