Fashionable Words to the Wise

By The Elm - Oct 31,2012@1:07 pm

By Grace Arenas
Copy Editor

Edgy or conservative, dressy or casual, girly or grunge- no matter how different styles vary, the fun of fashion is that there are no set rules for any style. You can stroll around campus in head-to-toe black or as a bedazzled, be-feathered, be-whatevered spectacle and as long as it’s a style that you feel your most confident in, chances are you’ll look great.

Nevertheless, while there’s no official wear-this-not-that handbook, there are things to keep in mind when compiling a wardrobe. Voices throughout the ages have spoken on the subject of fashion—some wisely, some not so much—and here’s what they’ve had to say.

“When in doubt, wear red.”-Bill Blass

Blass, an American fashion designer, could not have been more correct. Red, like leopard print and most metallics, is basically a neutral; it goes with everything. The color itself is bold and sexy and can either be the focus of an outfit or bring just the right accent in the form of a bag, a pair of shoes, a nail polish. But the “wear red” rule doesn’t have to be taken literally. The point here is to always have a fabulous go-to something—a favorite dress, a power color— that is guaranteed to work for you. That way, when you’re simultaneously scarfing down breakfast, printing your midterm, and studying for that stats quiz, dealing with the dreaded “nothing to wear” syndrome can be the furthest thing from your mind.

“Some of the worst mistakes in my life were haircuts.” –Jim Morrison

Clearly the time to hesitate was not through for The Doors’ frontman before he hopped into the barber’s chair. But it’s true; your hair is as much a part of your style as any item of clothing. As much as we all may regret the unfortunate bangs we had in middle school or the -gasp- mullets that may have made an appearance at one point or another, experimenting with hair styles and colors is a fun, low-risk way to freshen up your look. Bad as it can get, it will always grow back!

“You can never be overdressed or overeducated.” –Oscar Wilde

Amen to the overeducated part, but you can in fact be too formal for the occasion; no one expects a ballgown in bio lab. However, as many of us begin applying and interviewing for internships and jobs, we should bear in mind the importance of clothes as a part of this process. Before they read your résumé and hear your wonderfully articulate selves talk, prospective employers are going to see the hopefully polished and professional wrapping in which that’s all packaged. Flannel and denim, though comfy, are not going to cut it.

“I like my money right where I can see it- hanging in my closet. -Carrie Bradshaw

Granted, the college student’s budget does not allow for the 30 plus pairs of Manolos the way a television character’s does. That being said, this line from “Sex and the City” can be taken as a statement on the value of investment pieces. Trends come and go, but you’re always going to need the perfect pair of jeans, a great coat, a pair of ballet flats, the list goes on. Spending a little extra on quality items that will be worn again and again means they’ll last longer, leaving extra money free for inexpensive, popular pieces to mix in with your classics.

“I wear my sort of clothes to save me the trouble of deciding which clothes to wear.” –Katharine Hepburn

Famous for her menswear-inspired clothing, and all those Oscar wins, Hepburn knew her stuff about style. Her statement boils down to this: there are as many types of clothes to wear as there are people to wear them; the important thing is finding your own unique look. Once you have your signature style figured out, you’re set!

The Elm

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