After surveying 13 students from Point Park University, I was assigned to survey an additional 10-20 to show more diverse possibilities in available answers. For this survey, I created a 10 question, multiple choice survey and emailed it to all the students in the class section. After I received 23 responses, I began to analyze the data.
In reference to previous answers, I anticipated the “Somewhat Interested” option to be the most responded answer. With 10 votes, my hypothesis was correct. I was somewhat surprised that “Very Interested” was the 2nd most chosen answer with 6 votes, as the last survey portrayed my classmates as more interested rather than what this graph shows. Four people decided they were “Interested” and three claimed they are “Not Interested”. As you can see in the chart, no one skipped this question. Overall, this information leads me to believe that there may be an increase in money spent on wardrobes, diversity in style/brand interest, etc. because it seems as those the participants do find fashion to be worth their time.
This question is one that I expected to vary (as the answers did in previous survey data). In the last survey, most participants found their inspiration from celebrities and stylists. In this survey, I learned that heritage/culture is the driving force behind 7 of the survey taker’s fashion sense. “Musicians” and “Athletes” were tied with 5 votes each. Compared to my last survey, only 4 people claimed to look to “Celebrities” for style inspiration and only 2 people chose “Stylists”. What I think is most interesting about this data is learning that many of the survey takers upkeep a traditional or mainstream sense of style (based on their own culture). The fact that only 2 people chose “Stylists” compared to 5 from the previous makes me think that either people changed their mind, I should have given the option to answer more than one selection, or, they didn’t pay attention to what they selected and chose at random. A correlation between sense of style and brand names did not exist; nearly every sense of style either acknowledged “Levi’s” or “Adidas” as appealing. *Side note: compared to the last survey, these results showed that no one takes style tips from “Models” whereas my previous survey results showed at least 1 person did.
This data had what was some of the most unpredictable. I did’t anticipate most answers to go to the farthest distances, but for distance traveled to shop, 6 people answered “25+ miles”, 6 people answered “20 miles” and 5 people answered “15 miles”. Only 2 people answered that they would travel 10 miles and 4 people said they wouldn’t travel more than 5 miles. If we consider that most of the people who took the survey are from within 30 miles of Pittsburgh, (refer to graph below) then it would mean that most of the survey takers either live in very rural areas, where shopping diversity is uncommon. Also, considering that 4 people wouldn’t travel over 5 miles, I am curious if this means they live close to a mall or shopping center or shop local boutiques.
Before I examined these results, I hypothesized that most people would spend a decent amount of money on their wardrobe per month, considering how interested in previous answers. Also, considering the distance the survey takers were willing to travel made me believe they would drop cash in shops and stores as well as the gas station. As you can see, these predictions were quite off. 12 of the survey takers responded “Under $50” is allocated to their wardrobe each month. 10 people said they spend up to but not over $100 and only 1 person said they spend up to $200. This graph shows that most of the survey takers portray a trend in spending less than $100 per month.
For this question, I enabled multiple answer options. In total, “Vintage” was the most chosen style option with 7 votes; 6 people claim a “Trendy” style; 5 people rock an “Athletic” style; 3 people claim a “Hipster” style; 1 person has an “Eclectic” style; and 1 person dresses in a “Preppy” style. I noticed some interesting correlations within individual responses and this answer. The one person who decided they had an “Eclectic” style also answered in the first question that they weren’t interested in fashion. I wonder, does this person think their style is eclectic because they will wear literally anything, or because they are interested in different aspects of fashion? Most people who claimed to have a “Vintage” style were influenced mainly by Heritage/Culture, Musicians and Celebrities and refer to websites and blogs for style advice and updates. The survey takers who embrace a “Hipster” style take notes from Musicians.
This question wasn’t one that was intended to represent much more than heightened areas of interest. As you can see in the graph, “Shoes” were the number one choice from 10 people. The other results were almost equally scattered: “Jewelry” as the second choice pick with 4 votes; “Purses” and “Hats” with 3 votes; and “Sunglasses” with 2 votes. Neither “Scarves” nor “Backpacks” received a single vote. Overall, it is clear that footwear is a main focus of interest for the demographics overall. (With this in mind, I should make more posts about shoes! *Files in brain*). If you add the total number of votes, you will notice 1 person did not vote and decided to skip. Perhaps accessories are not relevant to everyone. I believe there is an obvious correlation to the survey taker’s sense of style in relation to the accessory they are most interested in. After comparing the individual responses, I could see that “Shoes” were chosen by every sense of style, but perhaps slightly more by those with a style inspired by “Musicians” and “Celebrities”.
The equality between “Levi’s” and “Adidas” is not surprising as they are both very mainstream brands that are immediately recognizable. I was very, very surprised that 9 people chose “Alexander McQueen” who is, no doubt, a recognizable name and brand, but given the only moderate interest in fashion among the survey takers, an unexpected preference. 5 people recognized “Bullhead” a brand featured in Pac Sun as their best liked brand. 2 people chose “Obey” and 1 person chose Target’s brand “Merona”. I included “Kelly Lane” as an option to see if any of the survey takers recognized or shopped the brand, based out of Pittsburgh. Unfortunately no one did, but you should: here! For this question I gave the survey takers the option to choose more than one brand to better compare their sense of style. “Adidas” and “Levi’s” were simultaneously chosen 3 times. “Alexander McQueen” was chosen alongside other brands including “Obey”, “Bullhead”, “Adidas” and “Levi’s” a total of 6 times.
The only relevance this has to my survey is the requirements of the assignment and the need to break down the demographics of my survey. As there were only 7 male participants, the female perspective was at an unfair advantage, but some of the men were in fact interested or knowledgeable with fashion terms and trends. 3 of the men had a sense of style inspired by “Athletes”; 3 had a sense of style reflective of their “Heritage/Culture” and 1 looks to “Celebrities” for style advice. 3 of the males with an athletic style voted that they are “Somewhat Interested” in fashion; 1 voted that he was “Interested” and 3 voted “Not Interested”. However, one of the “Not Interested” votes was the same person who refers to “Celebrity” style, which I imagine reflects an interest in fashion, so I imagine that answer was made incorrectly. All but one person chose “Under $50” for their monthly wardrobe contribution, which is significantly less than the averages of the female’s responses (below).
The second group of the survey represented 16 of the total votes. Looking through the female demographics, I learned that not one of the females answered “Not Interested” in fashion; 3 “Interested”, 7 “Somewhat Interested” and 6 “Very Interested”. The females expressed a varied sense of style inspired by each of the available choices. More of the women voted for spending in the higher options for monthly totals of $50-$100 and/or $100-$200. Only 5 females chose the “Under $50” option.
This question was concerned with the original location of which my survey takers live. The importance of this question is simply to centralize this survey to the style of the people in Pittsburgh. Without this question, my survey could be used in any city’s blog under the description of college student fashion demographics. The importance of where these survey takers are from is vital to relate the style of people born and bred in the Burgh. 14 of the survey takers were from Pittsburgh, or less than 30 miles North/South/East/West of Pittsburgh. Basically, this shows that nearly half of the survey takers represent style that could be common in Pittsburgh. Of these 14 respondents, exactly half of them expressed that they were “Somewhat Interested” in fashion; 3 were “Very Interested”; 2 were “Interested”; and 2 were “Not Interested”. For shopping, 3 people travel up to or over 25 miles; 5 people are willing to/do travel “20 miles”; 3 people travel “15 miles”; 1 person stays within “10 miles” and 2 people travel “5 miles”. What we can see from this data is that those who are from Pittsburgh are generally concerned with their sense of style; are willing to travel and spend money. The respondents from the general Pittsburgh area and < 30 miles within are made up of 10 females and 4 males.
** This graph represents the total number of votes (7) by people from Pittsburgh **
A graph like this is truly heartbreaking for an aspiring fashion journalists. Not one person voted that publications (i.e, Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar) offer them insight on current fashion and trends. On a more positive note (again, from my point of view) is that 9 people refer to “Websites and Blogs” for fashion tips – 🙂 – 7 people answered “Social Media” fills their void for style updates; 4 people refer to “Television” for their daily dose of fashion inspiration and 2 people would be lost without the help of “Friends/Strangers”. Of the Pittsburgh and < 30 mile surrounding area, 1 person skipped this question. 5 of this group voted for “Social Media”; 4 voted for “Websites/Blogs”; “Television” and “Friends/Strangers” both had 2 votes. With the two most voted for options a product of technology, it is no surprise that these options were chosen by college students. We are constantly surrounded by and taught the importance of social media, blogs, websites, etc. and in the world of journalism, we are being told that print publication jobs are out there, but this small sample group may be revealing the ugly truth. If college students do not rely on publications for their fashion advice, they may not refer to them for other advice and tips either. Just a thought.
Other interesting findings:
Of my 10 questions, 3 were skipped. The first was question 6, “What accessory are you most drawn to?” The second question was “Where are you from?” The third was “Where do you see the newest fashions/trends?” I’m not sure why any of these questions would be skipped, I don’t see them as overly invasive or uncomfortable, but, to each their own. One person skipped the location question, while another person skipped the two others in their survey.
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What I have gathered from this survey is a complex set of information that can be vaguely broken down into this: On average, a good sense of style is important for this group of college students. Though they may not spend over $100, they do rely on blogs for trends, which some of them are willing to travel up to and over 25 miles for. Most of these students enjoy shopping for shoes, embrace a collection of style and recognize both high-end, designer and mainstream, every-day brands.
** I wanted to include this screen shot to show how popular the “Pittsburgh Fashion Bloggers” tag is – anyone who took this survey knows how big the network of fashion bloggers in the ‘Burgh is! **
And, yes, I could have dove much deeper into the parallels among these students and their answers, but overall, I have learned that no matter who or what inspires it, and no matter how vital or minuscule, fashion is an aspect of everyone’s life from this survey.