TikTok Fashion Icon @Tinyjewishgirl on the Art of Low-Balling
Clara Perlmutter—or @tinyjewishgirl, as she’s known to her 772K TikTok followers—found internet fame during the depths of the pandemic. When lockdowns forced her to leave NYU for her parents’ home in Connecticut, Perlmutter, who had spent her college career mastering the art of the perfect on-campus fit, satiated her aesthetic boredom with a series of TikToks staged in the middle of her jam-packed closet. The college student showed viewers how she would dress for occasions that didn’t exist, trotting out obscure ’90s designer pieces and thrifted favorites in the process. Two years later, Perlmutter has remained true to her own formula, drawing on an expansive knowledge of fashion history to source archival pieces while pulling together ever-more outlandish outfits. To find out how she does it, we slid into the @tinyjewishgirl DMs.
TINYJEWISHGIRL: 23, female, NYC.
INTERVIEW: What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Turn off my alarms and all subsequent backup alarms I have set so I don’t wake up my boyfriend. Then check my phone, usually in the order of: texts, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter.
INTERVIEW: What were your last three Google searches?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Chernobyl, a Jeremy Scott Adidas jacket that I ended up finding elsewhere for cheaper, and Nicole Scherzinger.
INTERVIEW: What’s your favorite platform to shop on?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Easily Poshmark. I go down very intense rabbit holes of brand discovery on a daily basis. The RealReal is a close second, though.
INTERVIEW: When was the last time you low-balled someone and what was it for?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: That Jeremy Scott jacket yesterday. And I just found out it went through! Really excited because I have the matching shoes.
INTERVIEW: Can you tell us how much you paid?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Yes. Just got two brand deal payouts this week so I spent $240, which is like $200 higher than I would normally pay for anything! The reason I was googling the jacket was to make sure I couldn’t find it for cheaper anywhere else.
INTERVIEW: Oh you really got them down!
TINYJEWISHGIRL: I seem to have gotten the best deal on the internet. I think they had it on sale for $444 from the original $1,000. And I was like, “No chance in hell.”
INTERVIEW: What are your top three favorite archive accounts on Instagram?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: @ninagabbanavintage, @gabriel_held_vintage, and @tomfordforgucci.
INTERVIEW: What’s your favorite YouTube rabbit hole?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Live music performances, recently a lot of Warren Zevon ones. I also try to find good covers of my favorite Warren Zevon songs but apparently not that many people are covering anything besides the greatest hits. My taste for Warren Zevon is too obscure for my own good.
INTERVIEW: Who’s your go-to for makeup tutorials?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Mikayla Nogueira on TikTok! She has the most therapeutic presence. I trust her judgement without question. And I have been a follower for a long time! It’s incredible to see how far she has come as a makeup artist and a person over the past however long. I don’t watch makeup tutorials for creative inspiration. I pull that from my own head. It’s mostly for product recommendations.
INTERVIEW: What’s your stalking platform of choice?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Instagram. I basically don’t stalk people anywhere else. That might be surprising because I am a TikToker, but I like the aesthetic element of a feed, seeing tagged pictures, the works.
INTERVIEW: Can you describe your browsing persona in three words?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Visual stimulation/rubbernecking. My boyfriend has such an educational approach to the internet and I definitely don’t take advantage of that possibility at this point in my life.
INTERVIEW: What does your TikTok For You page look like?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Oh it is horrible. I want cursed video-type content, but it is mostly people who don’t have to face the consequences of their shopping addictions because they thrift things for dirt cheap. The reason I say that it is horrible is that it gives me the desire to acquire when I have no business buying anything else. I’ll show you what I wish it was like:
TINYJEWISHGIRL: This curation is unmatched.
INTERVIEW: Maybe that answers this question: what’s an account that everyone should follow?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: That’s a good question. I think many people won’t get @kimbuchakardashian. Also, sometimes I secretly contribute to @joan.of.arca. It was love at first them making me a cursed image.
INTERVIEW: What’s your favorite meme format?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Cursed images! You know, like accidental memes. Something that is aesthetically bizarre or was not self aware of how funny it was that got screenshotted and reposted. I also love memes that are like five-ish years out of date being shared ironically.
TINYJEWISHGIRL: I was a meme queen back in the day but my sense of humor is so broken. Let me show you.
@interview_magazine This ad made @clara ♬ original sound Interview Magazine
TINYJEWISHGIRL: This tiny section of this ad made me cry laughing. I never finished the ad or figured out what it was for. I didn’t want the context. This was perfect.
INTERVIEW: How many unread iMessages do you have?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Zero. I read them right away and respond to them. Something is wrong with me if I forget to respond to a text.
TINYJEWISHGIRL: I am a machine powered by anxiety. I couldn’t not look at it and I do NOT want to see that notification bubble on my screen.
INTERVIEW: Read receipts: on or off?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Off! I used to have them on in like 2014 but now I think it’s sadistic.
INTERVIEW: Describe your most incriminating accidental email or text.
TINYJEWISHGIRL: I am pretty good about saving contacts but apparently I had two unsaved contacts in my texts: my boyfriend’s cousin and my ex-boyfriend. This wasn’t incriminating per se, but I once sent my ex-boyfriend a birthday text meant for my boyfriend’s cousin. I am even more meticulous about saving contacts now. If I don’t wear my reading glasses I will carelessly send online shopping links to the wrong people. It happens too often.
INTERVIEW: What’s a website everyone should know about?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Google docs, or rather Google Drive. God did life get easier when that came about. I wrote a book on Google docs! I would also diary on it! Goodbye flash drives!!! And being able to write on my phone on the train to my parents’ house got me through college. All the collaborative aspects! I could go on and on.
INTERVIEW: Ok, wait. What was the book?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Okay, unpublished. Haven’t even looked over it. ‘Twas kind of a vampire story. Fictional. About freshman year at NYU and it is really specifically set in December of 2017.
INTERVIEW: Amazing. I hope we get to read it some day. Final question: what is your password?
TINYJEWISHGIRL: Hahaha my password??? That is for me to barely know and for everyone else to never find out.