Car Couture

What does your car say about you? A deep dive into accessorizing your vehicle


As high schoolers reach the age of 16 and get their license, many look forward to making their car unique and personalized. This can show up as a range of colors, original bumper stickers or fun decor. 

Car decor is not only for style, but it can also serve as a practical addition to students’ vehicles. Blankets, pillows and air fresheners have become popular inclusions to students’ cars to add style and comfort. With that, students also choose options that showcase their personality and make their car feel like their own. 

Students’ cars are often a form of self expression. The Paly parking lots are full of cars that have become a vital way for students to express their individuality. 

One of these students includes junior Natasha Strauss, who takes pride in her highly decorated mini-van (“Vincent Van Gogh”). 

Her car not only includes a plushie of the artist Vincent Van Gogh (with a detachable velcro ear), but also many other essentials.

“Some of my car essentials are polar ice gum, blankets and pillows, lots of charger, about seven extra hoodies just in case, silly putty and snacks,” Strauss said.

These items are essentials and a way to give the car a more personalized look and feel. A car can represent much more than a simple vehicle, it can be a place of comfort.

My car is a motif for my teenage years, my autonomy, friendships and connections. My car is my hearth.

— Natasha Strauss, 11

Strauss’ car relates to a lot more memories than just driving. It relates back to her homecoming proposal and to many hangouts with friends. 

Juniors Natasha Strauss and Alice Lifshitz

“My car is a motif for my teenage years, my autonomy, friendships and connections,” Strauss said. “My car is my hearth.”

Lili Wakenshaw, a Paly junior, also prides herself in her unique car, a bright blue truck. 

“I would always ride in it with my cousins since I was really little, so the car is like 15 years old,” Wakenshaw said. “It was totally the coolest thing ever to me, and that’s what made me want a blue truck as my car.”

Because of its distinctive color and manual gear, Wakenshaw appreciates the car, which has been around her family for many years. 

“I got so lucky because my grandparents were trying to sell it right when I was going to get my license, so my parents bought it and now I get to drive it, which is super cool,” Wakenshaw said. 

Additionally, Wakenshaw’s car is manual, something which isn’t common with most other cars at Paly. 

“I like learning on a manual [car] because I think it’s a good skill to have,” Wakenshaw said. “I also want to live in Europe at some point, and they drive manuals there.” 

These two cars, as well as many others, can be a form to express uniqueness and a method to personalize your car to something that fits someone’s personality.