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On the streets of…Prague, Czech Republic










Dvorákovo nábreží (Dvorák’s Waterfront) in Prague’s Old Town



I first crossed paths with Karolína in New York City where, amidst a sea of urban black, she stood out like some exotic Central-European bird (should such a thing exist)—bold and unapologetic in blocks of color, skirts of neon tulle, Minnie-Mouse hairbows and plastic glasses with frames the size of your fist, all without a shred of Brooklyn irony—only hell-bent on having fun.  As I ground and groaned out the first drafts of an undergraduate thesis, Karo, between performances of her jazz-band tour (she does vocals, natch), grumbled politely about the price of beer and the sprawl of grey pavement and proudly showed off a pair of Chuck Taylor knockoffs she’d scored in midtown, covered heel to toe in sequins.  Still in her final year of high school, she strutted and sighed and smoked a cigarette with the nonchalance of a silent film star.  This girl, I thought, could pull off anything.


Now an art history student at Charles University in Prague, Karolína’s wardrobe for the weekend is as fearless as it was when we met, but it’s rounded out with classic pieces she’s hunted and gathered for the school and work week.  The secret is a keen eye for second-hand shopping—Karo is that enviable breed of woman who seems to scout a treasure out of every trash heap.  And paired with a quick wit and a shock of self-confidence, just about anything works.


Karolina uses her father's book bag from the Czechkscolvak army

Karolina uses her father's book bag from the Czechoslovak army



Karolína’s classic blazer and Klein-blue blouse are finds from Prague second-hand shops, and her pleated mini was a steal from a sale rack in Munich.  But the real gem is her gorgeous leather bookbag—her father carried it in college, Karo told me, but it was originally issued by the Czechoslovak army, her family believes, as a holder for a gas mask.


Photographed and written by Morgan Childs 



*Morgan currently lives in Prague, Czech Republic, where she is an MA student in the Department of Anglophone Literatures and Cultures at Charles University.  She is a graduate of Barnard College and a native of Texas.  She tweets here: https://twitter.com/#!/MorganAChilds.

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