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So here’s the thing, BurdaStyle readers:

I’ve noticed that most people’s style tends in one of two directions: naughty or — you guessed it! — nice. I’m talking about people’s personal style here, not their personalities. You may be an ax murderer and that would be naughty indeed, but not relevant to the topic at hand.

Take me for instance. I’m a “nice” and always have been. This is about as naughty as I get:


Then there’s my partner Michael. He’s a naughty. Left to his own devices, he’d wear jeans cut too low and ripped in all the wrong places, a see-through tank top, and studded leather wrist bands (You’ll have to take my word for it.) I’ve actually given up trying to do anything about it, though I’m not above the odd barely-audible-but-definitely-disapproving chortle.

My style icons are decidedly wholesome:

(Wally and the Beav, Pat Boone)

A naughty person’s icons would probably include people like this:

(Mick Jagger, Patti Smith, Lil Kim)

Not sure which type you are?

Here’s a simple test. Complete the following:

Debbie ___________.

If you said Gibson, you’re a nice. If you said Harry, you’re a naughty, see? Here’s another.

Ozzie __________.

If you said Nelson (Remember Ozzie and Harriet?) you’re a nice. If you said Osborne, you’re a naughty.


More naughty…


And more nice…


Frankly, readers, it seems that people today are so desperate to be naughty — think Halloween and all the naughty secretary, naughty nurse, naughty everything costumes that are all the rage — that projecting nice is positively subversive!

So how about you? I can say with confidence, having seen many BurdaStyle members projects photos, that we have some definite naughties among us — I won’t name names!

Do you think you are a naughty or a nice? If so, why? Were you rebelling against an oppressive childhood of church picnics and “Little House on the Prairie” re-runs? Was your mother a Carol Brady wannabe? Or just the opposite: were you raised by a woman named Rainbow on a commune and forced to wear fringe vests and peace-sign-embossed leather headbands, and chew peyote gum?

How does your nice/naughty style manifest itself?

Are you Debbie, Doris, or the devil?

Enquiring minds want to know!


When native New Yorker Peter Lappin bought his first sewing machine two years ago to hem a pair of thrift store jeans, little did he know he was initiating a journey that would bring him fame and fortune. While awaiting his fortune he stays busy writing “the world’s most popular men’s sewing blog,” Male Pattern Boldness, and now contributing to BurdaStyle.

“For more than twenty years I’d lived on the edge of the Garment District without even knowing what a seam ripper was. Now I rip daily!”


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    Apr 30, 2011, 02.58 PMby gedwoods

    Hmmm… I’m a definite “nice”, but I increasingly incorporate some “naughty” elements as part of my changing look. And now that I recognize this, I may do so more consciously! A very thought-provoking post! In general, I am creating an “unconventional” look that is more nice than naughty.

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    Apr 28, 2011, 09.46 PMby harrietbazley

    Hmmm… I answered Debbie Who? and Ozzy Osbourne – I’ve never even heard of any other Ozzies, and can’t think of any Debbies offhand – but I’m definitely a Nice: my everyday style is a blouse-and-skirt combination, with trousers thrown in if I don’t need to cycle (Chafing. No ventilation. No wonder they had to invent cycle shorts for men…), a brooch or necklace to add interest,and a jacket for warmth. Velvet and corduroy for winter, cotton and linen for summer. In the short spring interval I can get away with short-sleeved ‘vintage’ jumpers worn on their own over a slip, but otherwise they take too much washing! High waists and low hemlines: the ‘regulation inch below the knee’ as a minimum. Knees are not pretty objects to display, and I’d rather show off my slender waistline than my not-so-slender thighs.

    For dressing-up I like frills (“Frilly jabots, puff sleeves or ruches on the skirt all tend to make the figure look more becoming” confides my 1936 home-sewing manual) and costume jewellery, although not necessarily both at once. Lashings and lashings of swirly fabric to flare as you move and drape as you sit down. A full neckline is a must; nothing strappy, let alone strapless (I prefer to keep my extensive underpinnings under cover).

    So if you measure naughtiness by the amount of flesh on display… then very, very nice ;)

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    Apr 28, 2011, 05.10 AMby rifka

    Like to keep ’em guessing…

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    Apr 27, 2011, 07.02 PMby weare4

    My answers led me to naughty and nice. Would that be considered sexy? Because when I am not running my kids all over the place in my jeans and sneakers.I like to wear pretty things that respectfully show my full figured puerto rican womanly curves. Great article!

    1 Reply
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    Apr 27, 2011, 04.43 PMby lclausewitz


    2 Replies
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 27, 2011, 09.20 PMby Peter Lappin

      LOL! Perfect.

    • 970316_10201865009255816_2084508514_n_large

      Apr 29, 2011, 05.08 PMby lclausewitz

      FYI, I don’t dress like Ramesses the Great. Well, not every day.

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    Apr 27, 2011, 10.20 AMby ichigogirl

    Whoopey, I’m naughty! At least according to your test, and probably in reality, dress-wise, too. I’m rather kind though ;-). I think the reason that I’m naughty dress-wise is partly that being a petite blonde without a lot of curves (read: with a child like figure) I HAVE to dress a bit naughty to be age appropriate and not look like an ageless, sexless plain boring girl/woman/?. Also, it might have to with the fact that I was a swimmer during my teen years (ie VERY used to showing exposed skin, no biggie, heck, I just noticed my avatar… just to illustrate the fact!). Btw, I’m always drawn to guys who look lie the santa clad nice guy bottom center, but in the end they always bore me. Too nice. I should go with the bad guys instead, maybe ;-) Funny post, I like it!

    1 Reply
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 27, 2011, 01.10 PMby Peter Lappin

      Thanks! Great comment.

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    Apr 26, 2011, 07.19 PMby loulourosa

    Hmmm your quiz says, i’m deffinitly Naughty. But it seemes allways difficult for me to make naughty things, everything turnes out sweet and well,…nice. When I was 8, Debbie Harry was my favourite popstar, I really loved her style,…

    1 Reply
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 27, 2011, 01.09 PMby Peter Lappin

      Aha! The quiz does not lie. ;)

  • Missing

    Apr 26, 2011, 12.21 AMby Barbara Ruggieri

    i said debbie moore so LOL im nice with out doubts haha

    1 Reply
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 26, 2011, 12.26 PMby Peter Lappin

      OK, I had to Google that one but it does sound like you’re a “nice.”

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    Apr 25, 2011, 11.39 PMby artemis-ivorywings

    hmm…. that’s actually a hard question. I think since I do most of my shopping at consignment shops and my latest exciting purchase is an uuuuggglllly green floral print dress that I intend on refashioning into something cute…. i think I fall into “artsy nice” if that isn’t a category, maybe it should be. lol

    1 Reply
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    Apr 25, 2011, 06.25 AMby woman

    Hahaha cute quiz. I answered Gibson and then Osbourne hahahhaa

    1 Reply
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    Apr 25, 2011, 03.02 AMby urbandon

    Category 3 -Bad ass Naughty. What am I rebelling against? What have you got? (and Anglican-white-bread childhood) Last time it was Halloween everyone asked where I got my spooky costume from. “Oh, from my closet.” I said.

    1 Reply
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 25, 2011, 01.08 PMby Peter Lappin

      Off the charts, huh? ;)

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    Apr 24, 2011, 02.38 AMby marloncosta

    I`m definitely nice! I used to be naughty when younger but nowadays you could say my style is “NICE”!

    1 Reply
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 25, 2011, 12.04 AMby Peter Lappin

      A “nice” — who knew? ;)

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    Apr 23, 2011, 03.37 PMby milr26

    I suppose it depends on the situation – and if I’ve lost that 10lbs of winter weight ;) Really, I prefer jeans and a tank or cute top. Not very exciting, I know. As a kid, I definitely rebelled, wearing mini skirts or anything else my mother would have a heart attack over. But now, the pics of Mick Jagger and Patti Smith sum it up pretty well. I always go for comfort first. I don’t even own a pair of heels…

    1 Reply
    • Jeans_sew_along_best_large

      Apr 25, 2011, 12.05 AMby Peter Lappin

      You’ve mellowed…into Patti Smith! ;)

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    Apr 23, 2011, 02.53 PMby panicsindetroit

    Well it depends. Daytime, I definitely dress nice, and oftentimes probably too nice. However, night time attire definitely falls under the category of naughty, I have no problem wearing short short skirts or refashioned t-shirts. My personal style is definitely bipolar.

    1 Reply
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