• About a Girl: Bean McLean

    On new adventures and forever favorites: spend a weekend in the life of SoCal girl Bean McLean (@beansiie) as she gets ready for the season ahead.
    Photos by Frankie Hildebrand

    Can you introduce yourself and share a little more about yourself?
    I’m Bean McLean. A lot of people want my last name to rhyme with my first but it doesn’t. Bean's a nickname that stuck ever since I was tiny — the origin is kind of disappointingly vague and lacking since my legal name is Danielle. I’ve just always been Bean. 

    I'm from north county San Diego and a first gen American between my split English and South African family. (This means I know maybe four curse words in Afrikaans and nothing else). I'm lucky enough to have a group of listeners in a corner of the internet where I share bits of myself. I love painting and creating and anything that keeps my hands and mind all tied up. 

    Describe more about your personal style — what colors, silhouettes, styles, fabrics do you love?
    I think my personal style is a total smorgasbord of eclectic and evolving influences. I'm really into the red trend at the moment: I've got some bright red gel nails on right now. Flirty skirts( skirts in general), gingham print, statement earrings, oval glasses, Bardot tops. Sometimes clashing is fun. Anything that could look Parisian.  Anything that is a little tongue-in-cheek and just ironic enough to confuse people on whether I might be wearing it seriously or not. I will always fall back on my pair of Levi’s. 

    Who/what/where/when do you look to for fashion inspiration?
    I don’t have one reliable source that I can constantly be inspired by. I feel like I’ll find little snippets of inspiration in the most bizarre crannies of life. A fun stranger will skirt past me and I’ll find myself seeking out a similar style for weeks afterward and they’ll never even know... I think things are so funny like that. 

    At what moments in your life do you feel most like yourself?
    At this moment I am still trying to track down who “me” is amongst huge scary lifestyle changes and coming into young adulthood. As cliche as that sounds. 

    I always get hit with an overwhelming sense of self in moments where I'm either running my mouth or completely shut up. Those really rare sparkly moments can be and often are obscure and fleeting and frustratingly hard to appreciate while you're living them.

    Sometimes I’ll catch myself off guard with self love when I’ve dressed myself and about to head out the door and realize that Im putting myself forward with only “me” in mind. Clothes can do that!

    What are some of your favorite local spots?
    For coffee I like going to Lofty Coffee and Jamestown Coffee Co. The Solana Beach farmer's market is always good for picking up flowers and hummus. Wood’s Cove, The Flower Fields, Hideaway Cafe. Or breakfast at Zinc — I would definitely recommend the French toast. 

    What's a personal mantra or favorite quotation? 
    “Once there were brook trout in the streams in the mountains. You could see them standing in the amber current where the white edges of their fins wimpled softly in the flow. They smelled of moss in your hand. Polished and muscular and torsional. On their backs were vermiculate patterns that were maps of the world in its becoming. Maps and mazes. Of a thing which could not be put back. Not be made right again. In the deep glens where they lived all things were older than man and they hummed of mystery.”  — that's from The Road by Cormac McCarthy. I’m pretty sure it’s the last page. I like snippets from books because they always remind me of the specific people and things in my life at the time I was reading it. Even if they don't make that much sense or sentiment to other people...but I don’t think that's what favorite quotes are for. 

    Who are some of your favorite artists? Is there anyone newly on your radar we should know about? 
    I’m in love with Frank Ocean right now. He’s so good. And also Lorde and her new album. Cake, ABBA, Khalid, Father John Misty. Music wise I think I have a pretty wide range of favorites. 

    I'm going to take “artist” in all forms of the word too! Elly Smallwood, Ivan Alifan, Margaret Atwood, Tim O’Brien, and Cormac McCarthy are all very inspiring artists or authors and I’d love to be able to pick their brains for a second. 

    Tell us three things you've been interested in lately
    The color red, putting a large geographical fissure between my high school and college years, scrunchies.

    What’s next for you? What are you looking forward to?
    I’m making the move from San Diego to Boston next month for college. It doesn’t completely seem real yet but I think I’ll soon be straddling the line between excitement and total meltdown. 

    What’s next is learning how to clean, how to not mess up my laundry, and how to become a real functioning half-adult. And juggle classes and any other spectacles of being 18 in a new city all while mastering the basics of cooking/self-sufficiency from YouTube videos. Wish me luck!

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