Category Archives: Campus Couture- Style.Study.Savvy

Fall 2013 Trend Picks

Fashion weeks have come and gone and the results are in…from garments incorporating dyed furs to the revival of classic quilting techniques, some pretty unique (and some traditional)  trends may be hitting your favorite retailers this next fall.

Here are my top picks for what is going to be hot, while the weather is cold in fall 2013.

Plaid and Gingham: Finally! Plaid is making a comeback…I have a feeling that this oh-so-classic yet under-appreciated pattern will be everywhere. Which is a good thing since I have a plaid blazer stowed in the back of my closet somewhere. For the gingham, this traditional summery fabric will be paired with heavier items, such as in the case of Prada, leather and fur.

dg plaidDolce and Gabbana Fall 2013 RTW (image via NYMag)


Prada Fall 2013 RTW (image via NYMag)

burberryplaid bag

Burberry Prorsum Fall 2013 RTW (image via NYMag)

Colored Fur: Fur always has somewhat of a presence in the fall, but in 2013 I think that fur is going to make some more appearances in bold and/or subtle ways–full vests, coats, accessories, and trimmed accents. What’s making this trend fresh is that fur will be painted, dyed, and printed.

fendifallfurFendi Fall 2013 RTW (image via NYMag)


Marni Fall 2013 RTW (image via NYMag)

Heavy opulence: Gold, jewels, shaped metal embellishments–the more excessive the better. Where will you be finding this trend the most in stores? Accessories and shoes probably, but also jackets and cocktail dresses. Think of jewel encrusted metallic elements and mosaics reminiscent of the Byzantine Empire era of history.

dgopulenceDolce and Gabbana Fall 2013 RTW (image via NYMag)


L’Wren Scott Fall 2013 (image via NYMag)

Quilting: We are not talking about your grandma’s log cabin quilt pattern making an appearance in garments, but the actual technique. Two layers sewn together at regular intervals produces a check or diamond pattern that is slightly puffed. For the mainstream ready to wear, look for quilting on shoulders, sleeves, and pockets as well as other accent areas.

michaelkorsquiltedMichael Kors Fall 2013 RTW (image via WWD)


J. Mendel Fall 2013 RTW (image via WWD)


Theysken’s Theory Fall 2013 RTW (image via WWD)

Will any of my picks make it into stores next fall? Only time will tell.



Pattern Play

Prints, patterns, and polka dots…oh my! Have you ever sifted through your closet looking for something new and fresh to wear, but  it all just seems a bit blah? Looking for a way to breathe some new life into your daily style? Fear this style slump no more because with a little bit of curiosity, bravery, and some style know-how you can become a master at mixing patterns.

Yes, you heard me right. This post is all about mixing prints! I will be the first one to admit that mixing prints can seem downright tricky. The overall look should be unique and interesting…yet it should not give off any “displaced circus clown” vibes. Mixed print outfits can also go from cute and quirky to “did she get dressed in the dark?”

Let’s try and keep this whole mixing prints thing simple with just a few basic suggestions.

1. Keep it subtle.

I love how my fabulous friend Lauren P. layered a neutral sequined printed tank under a cardigan, and then added a floral print scarf that picked up on the tank’s hue. With accents of each pattern showing, this combination is a smart and subdued way to capitalize on your closet’s offerings.

photo copy

2. Play with the scale.

Scale is the relative size of one object to another. As you can see in the example below, the polka dot print on the pants is much smaller in scale than the stripes of the sweater. Through optimization of large- and small-scale items, the sweater and pants do not compete with one another. Instead of visually sorting through jumble of stripes and dots, one will notice the stripes and then the dots, or vice versa. Add a bold pop of color in there for bonus points too!

Screen Shot 2013-01-18 at 11.34.42 AM

3. Match the colors, mix the prints.

With this sassy, classy, and retro outfit, the warm tones of the skirt and shirt make the outfit cohesive. The polka-dotted print is crisp and sharp, while the lines of the tweed skirt are a bit muddled. Because polka dots and tweed are decidedly feminine, these two prints are well suited to each other. Other options might include floral prints and soft stripes, plaid and and geometric prints, etc.

Screen Shot 2013-01-18 at 11.39.29 AM

Mixing prints isn’t so difficult now, is it? If there is one point to take away about this technique, it’s to make sure that the chosen prints aren’t fighting for attention against one another. Keep that in mind, and you should be good to go!



Expect the Unexpected

Lately I have been obsessed with exploring Scott Schuman’s blog, The Sartorialist. Forget what you know about perfectly matched ensembles and open up your eyes to some seriously cool street fashion. Schuman “began The Sartorialist with the idea of creating a two-way dialogue about the world of fashion and its relationship to daily life.” Schuman photographs real people on the streets, just the way they are. No fancy lighting, props, or gimmicks. Just the individual.

What I happen to love most about this refreshing take on capturing fashion is that every ensemble featured has inspired me to become more brave and curious with my outfit choices. I will be the first one to admit that I love to match and be perfectly coordinated at all times. Which has huge potential to lead to a boring and unmemorable look. Who wants to be boring and unmemorable?

I have collected a couple images of some outfits that I happen to love, that bring in a bit of the “unexpected element”. These two stylish ladies happen to be some of my close friends with amazing senses of style. So, let’s examine the unexpected and refreshing elements in their outfits.

First, let’s take a look at the fabulous Laura S.


This is an excellent example of mixing blacks and browns. The very neutral taupe color in the snakeskin printed pencil skirt lends itself well to bringing together the cognac colored leather jacket and the black pumps. With the leather and snakeskin, Laura could have tiptoed into the very edgy “biker at a bar” look, which while perfectly appropriate for the evenings and weekends does not translate into a business casual look on a Monday afternoon. The unexpected element of this outfit is the ever so classic and preppy gold-buckle pointy-toed black pumps. The addition of the shoes makes the whole outfit scream “Hey, I’m super fun and sassy…but I’m also responsible and know how to take care of some serious business.”

Clearly, Laura is a shining example of knowing when the right touch can bring an outfit to a whole different level.

Next is Claire B.

double button-upGold earrings. Chambray shirt. Cheetah print button-up. Red jeans. Riding boots. Gold bracelet. This is a lot of color and texture, but Claire pulls it off effortlessly. Claire could have easily just worn the chambray, or the cheetah print, and her look would have been stylish. The unexpected element of her outfit that really sets it off is her layering technique. A button-up shirt on top of a button-up shirt. How cool is that? I just love how the cheetah print peeks out of the chambray near the collar and down near her wrists.

Bravo to you Claire for your innovation!

Try something a little unexpected when you dress yourself next. It never hurts to be memorable, does it?



New Year, (re)New You

Ah, tis the season for making New Year’s resolutions. Is your list 20 items long? Have you given thought to what you want to accomplish in 2013? I’m not in the habit of making New Year’s resolutions (it’s a pretty radical choice), but I definitely undergo a period at the beginning of the year where I focus on renewing my life. After all, this is the perfect time to start fresh.

What do I mean by renewing? Well, as good old Merriam-Webster would put it, to renew is to “make like new (obviously); restore to freshness, vigor, or perfection”

Are there some aspects of your life that have gone stale, and could use a bit of renewing? Maybe you don’t need to make huge resolutions, but instead, work on the little things in your life. Now is the time to envision what 2013 will hold for you, and it is the time to decide how that might happen.

Here are two aspects of my life that I want to focus on renewing this year:

-My sense of style:

Problem: I have gotten into this style comfort zone of wearing subdued colors and lots of scarves…and now I am in the mood to try something fresh. I would love to try something a little more edgy. Black leather and studs, perhaps? Hmmm, I will definitely have to try and incorporate that somehow into my wardrobe!

Solution: If you are struggling to update your style the best way is actually to un-define it. Get out of your comfort zone and try something completely fresh. Try on items that you feel you would never wear. It may be a happy surprise to find out that you actually like it. Don’t know where to begin? Take a friend or family member shopping with you and give them the control of picking out the outfits!

  • Key point: Take some time to evaluate what you wear and how it makes you feel. A new look will give you a new zest for life. 

-Focusing on relationships:

Problem: As a college student I definitely get into a zone of convenience as I like to call it. What is a zone of convenience you might ask? Well, it’s like a vortex where all the choices revolve around what is easiest for you to do at any given time. My zone of convenience looks like this. I tend to focus on all my schoolwork first, and then make time for fun stuff or hanging out with friends when it’s convenient for me (yes, it is sad, but true!). You don’t have to be a student to be in a zone of convenience. This zone affects people who have a highly routinized behavior (i.e., going to work, taking care of the kids, etc).

Solution: Understanding that sacrifices have to be made and simply making the effort to reach out. Maybe there is a friend that you haven’t gotten together with in a long time. Text them, or call them to see how they are doing. Take the time out of your day to listen to people and be sincere. Get to know your colleagues, your employees, your students, acquaintances, etc. By focusing on relationships, you get to focus on the people who help to bring out the best qualities in yourself

  • Key point: You never know when you may need someone’s help, so make your relationships count.

Now, I will leave you with some thoughts to ponder and guide you through a time of renewal.









Sequins and Sparkles

If there is one part of the holidays that I love more than snow, peppermint hot chocolate, and Christmas carols…it has to be sequined clothing. Nothing says, “I’m here for the party!” than an outfit adorned with sequins, sequins, and more sequins. Why stand in, when you can stand out with the help of a little sparkle?? The holiday season is the perfect time to shine as bright as a lighted Christmas tree. Personally, I think that sequins are appropriate all year round. Sequined tanks, sequined shorts…even sequined blazers are available. If it has sequins, chances are I will be drawn to it faster than Santa Claus’ reindeer can take off on Christmas Eve. Just remember that unfortunately, it is possible to wear too many sequins. With head-to-toe sparkle, you will look more like a disco ball than the belle of the ball. 

Sorry Heidi, but I will have to say “auf wiedersein” to this look.

(photo courtesy of

I am in full support of sequined cocktail dresses, and other pieces with sequined accents such as shirts with sequined elbow patches and sequin paneled mini-skirts. When applying such sequined pizzazz to an outfit, remember to keep the other components somewhat simple. Opt for solid colors and minimal accessories. Think of sequins as the lead role, and accessories as supporting actors in your grand holiday outfit.

The famous Lady Gaga once said, “And now, I’m just trying to change the world, one sequin at a time.” The next time you have have a holiday party to attend, try something different. Maybe think twice about breaking out your classic little black dress…unless it’s covered in sequins 😉



Campus Couture-Mastering the Art of Thrift Shopping

Does the term “thrift shopping” turn you off? Does your mind immediately conjure up images of dusty and musty rooms, packed to the gills with unwanted cast-offs, decrepit sweaters, and bizarre knick-knacks? I understand that thrift-shopping may seem like an unappealing and daunting task, the pros far outweigh the cons. Don’t believe me? Here are my thift shop faves!

1. Mustard 3/4 length tweed jacket-Ark&Co.-$4

2. Tan long-line blazer-BCBGMaxAzria (for real!!!)-$5

3. Peachy/coral pencil skirt-J.Crew-$3

4. Chunky oversized knit sweater-Express-$2

4.Polka dot cardigan-$3

5. Printed cardigan-$2

6. Olive green v-neck sweater-Banana Republic-$3

7. Tribal print sundress-$6

8. Green pin-striped button-up-Gap-$2

9. Greige waffle-knit sweater-$3

10. Black, white, and green plaid trapeze blazer-$5

If you want to experience the same thrift shopping success as I have, there are a few things you should take note of. First of all, lower your expectations. Don’t go out thrifting and expect to find a ton of designer duds on your first stop…lots of times going thrifting is pretty hit-and-miss. Second, have a creative vision. If you are handy with a needle and thread, chances are you can transform a hideous muumuu into a cute little dress for less than $5. Third, be patient. Thrift stores are packed to the gills, and oftentimes with a bunch of junk. Take your time to slowly peruse the selections. Fourth, thrift stores are amazing places to find vintage jewelry and scarfs. I probably have about 10 scarves that I absolutely adore that come from thrift shops.


(just a small portion of my scarf collection)

Go forth and explore your local thrift shop, and hopefully your endeavors will be rewarded.



Winter Essentials- Campus Couture meets Friday Favorites

It’s a winter wonderland here on campus! The current temp is 8 degrees with freezing fog. What? Freezing fog? I have never even heard of that!! Thus, I thought it would be perfectly appropriate to list off some winter essentials for your wardrobe to brace against the biting cold.

1. Sorel Boots: These boot do work. They are super warm, they have excellent grip on snow on ice so that do not wipe outs do not occur. They also come in an abundance of styles and colors.

2. Glomitts: These are a hybrid between gloves and mittens. They offer the unbeatable warmth of mittens with the functionality of gloves. My favorites are fair isle style, but they literally come in every color and style imaginable.

3. Colored Peacoat: A peacoat is a style essential. Put one on and you will automatically look classy and fabulous. Try a peacoat in one of the colors from Pantone’s Fall 2012 color trends.

4. Fur Trim Jacket: Fur trim jackets are great for those perfect winter days when there is a light frost covering the trees and everything just glistens. The trim is cozy and fashionable, and adds a little je ne se qua to traditional plaid or tweed.

5. Knitted Ear-warmers: I loovvveeee these. I myself have probably knitted and crocheted like 10 of them. They are so convenient and cute. They are especially great so that your ponytail of top knot doesn’t get smashed in a hat!

6. Plaid Scarf: I simple plaid scarf will never, ever, ever, go out of style. Burberry’s perfect plaid scarves have been around forever and are still a classic style craving for lots of people.

Stay warm, stay stylish.



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