Just put away your high school T-shirts, okay? This is for all of the college students out there. While I’m no longer in college, the only thing about getting is older is being able to look back and think “wow, I really should have done this five years ago instead of that…” Our parents were right and we’ll realize things eventually, but luckily for all of you, I’ve already been an 18 year old college freshman and a sophomore and a junior and a senior, so I have some insight.
Today, we’re talking wardrobe staples. Like realistic wardrobe staples you will find yourself needing/wanted while at college.
A lot of college kids get a bad rep for showing up to class in sweats and just-rolled-out-of-bed-messy-buns. I was never one of them, but if you take this post into consideration, neither will you.
- Neutral V-Neck: V-neck T-shirts are really versatile, so pack a few of these. You can keep it casual with jeans or dress it up a bit with a skirt and statement necklace. But they’re a must.
- Chambray button down: These are a personal favorite for me. They look nice tucked into something for a dressier occasion or unbuttoned for something casual.
- Oversized flannel: These are really trendy and useful. They’ll look ridiculously chic half tucked into shorts, tied around your waist, or just thrown on over a T-shirt. I like them when it starts to get a little cooler, just for something warmer as the sun goes down.
- Dark wash skinnies: Skinny jeans are still my go-to, and I would say any kind work. But I really prefer a dark wash. They look cleaner than light wash which makes them more versatile (and with limited closet space, versatility is key.)
- Circle skirt: I love pieces you can wear to work and for fun. You can make a circle skirt dressy with patent ballet flats and tights or casual with combat boots or sneakers. And a skirt is the appropriate way to not wear pants in public. They’re comfy.
- The Little Black Dress: You just need one, regardless of your age, honestly. Things happen. You may get a job interview (score!), a hot date (good for you!), a professional class presentation (good luck!). This is a piece that’s really handy. Make sure it fits nicely and is comfortable.
- Denim cut-offs: Kind of like flannels, they’re just always going to be trendy, especially while it’s still warm.
- Sundress: I would say make it a fairly conservative cut, nothing too revealing. Color and pattern can be up to you. But with a flattering but not too revealing sundress, it’ll be class appropriate, shopping appropriate, date, night out, church or sorority appropriate.
- Layering jacket: I usually have three jackets on hand: denim, leather, and cargo. That’s my style; I bounce back and forth. I would advise at least having one jacket you can throw on when it’s going to be a chilly morning walk to class or cool evening.
- Collegiate gear: Wearing a crazy amount of your college’s get-up is a surefire way to show you’re a freshman, which is fine. But I really like a simple crew neck sweatshirt for autumn football games/winter basketball games and a T-shirt or tank for warmer events. Boom. You’re set.
- Blazer: You will have a presentation that requires you to dress professionally, and you will probably get points taken off if you don’t. Just have a blazer. Wear it with the circle skirt and V-neck. You’ll be alright.
- Cozy sweats: I own one pair of sweatpants, and I wear them to bed. I was the same in college. But I’m not saying you can’t have them. Just try to reserve them for dorm hall hangouts and late night study sessions instead of your noon class, okay? Please?
- Dress slacks: Like the blazer, just trust me on this one. You’ll need them at least once.
This is part one of your staples, because the accessories are a whole other list that you can catch on Tuesday. (: