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Mackenzi Lee Breaks the Rules When It Comes to Personal Style

by Holyn Thigpen

Courtesy of Mariah Wall

Every print issue of BUST brings a chat with a new fashionista about their personal style, as part of our Fashion Nation series. In this past Winter 2021/2022 issue, we spoke with Salt Lake City-based author Mackenzi Lee (@themackenzilee). 

Alright, tell me about this outfit because I love it. 

The main piece is from Maria Queen Maria on Etsy, the shop of independent Bulgarian designer Mina Kaye. I’m obsessed with the return of the ’90s, and by ’90s, I mean 1890s. The necklace is actually three necklaces that I layered on top of each other, which I’m becoming more confident doing—kind of mixing pieces. The boots I thrifted. I’ve become big on second-hand shopping as thrifting has become more of an option online. 

MLee small final 6aaa6Courtesy of Mariah Wall

How would you describe your style? 
My style is evolving and realizing that there’s no right way to do anything. Androgynous doesn’t have to mean colorless, and masculine doesn’t have to mean I can’t wear it. Feminine doesn’t mean it has to be a skirt and a traditional 1950s silhouette. The last couple of years for me have really been about challenging my own preconceptions about what I am allowed to wear. 

Who are your biggest fashion influences? 
There’s a Singaporean fashion blogger named Esther Quek. She wears a lot of men’s silhouettes and men’s suits but in really bright colors. She’ll also wear a really tailored, fitted blazer with a beautiful tulle skirt, and I love the interplay of masculine and feminine in her style. I also love Iris Apfel—just the fearlessness of her aesthetic and the total disregard for any rules. 

How do you decide which outfits are Insta-worthy? Any criteria? 
I try to dress every day like it’s an outfit I’d put on Instagram. But it’s really about how I feel in an outfit. There are some days that I get up and throw clothes on without thinking about it, and I’m like, “I feel really good,” and I want to document that. Taking pictures of my clothes feels like a way of telling people about myself in the same way that a bio or caption would. 

The Nobleman’s Guide to Scandal and Shipwrecks, the final book in Mackenzi Lee’s New York Times Bestselling Monatague Siblings series, is out now. Find out more at


Disregard the rules with a few of Mackenzi’s faves!

fashion nation picks 864b6

1. Kiki Clothing Kimono Cap Sleeve Dress, $273,
2. Julia Bo Hendrick Derbies, $145,
3. Studio Cult Binder Clip Bag, $115,
4. Julia Allert Designer Midi Dress with Belt in Bright Yellow, $241,
5. Goldmeise Statement Chain Hello, €49,
6. Kat Maconie Lucie Boots, £310,

Photographed by Mariah Wall 

This article originally appeared in BUST’s Winter 2021/2022 print edition. Subscribe today!


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Founded in 1993, BUST is the inclusive feminist lifestyle trailblazer offering a unique mix of humor, female-focused entertainment, uncensored personal stories, and candid reporting that tells the truth about women’s lives.

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