By Kay Bush
Elm Staff Writer
It’s hard to miss the people who are in fraternities or sororities on campus. They’re almost always wearing some form of Greek letters or sitting at a table in Hodson fundraising for their philanthropies. The biggest stigma that comes with being a part of Greek life is the style. From Sperry’s to cardigans, the stereotypical frat boy or sorority girl apparently meet every expectation.
Truth be told, fraternities and sororities often have events that require the brothers and sisters to look preppy or well-dressed. Some organizations have adopted this more than others in their everyday look, resulting in khakis and button downs. There is an unspoken understanding that brothers and sisters are supposed to look presentable to represent their organization well. Each fraternity and sorority has their own idea of what qualifies as presentable. There may also be people who just want to look nice every day. So what if you wanted to know the “In’s and Out’s” of Greek life fashion? It’s not very difficult, but some color coordination might be needed.
Let’s begin with the sorority look. You may have heard this stereotypical style be described as “totally srat.” On Washington College’s campus, “srat” means a few things. If meant to describe a casual, typical sorority girl look, it usually entails jeans or leggings paired with a plain v-neck or Greek lettered T-shirt. A shawl-like sweater or cardigan finishes off the look so it looks casual but somewhat polished. It’s not an outfit that makes it look like the girl just rolled out of bed. “Srat” can also apply to a classier look. There’s usually one day of the week when sisters wear a nice outfit like a dress with a cardigan and boots (since it’s fall). Most people wouldn’t elect to wear such a nice outfit just for attending classes, which makes it a trademark sorority woman style. You’ve probably heard about the Lilly Pulitzer craze that all sisters supposedly go through. In part it’s true, because she makes bright, preppy clothes which makes dressing up more bearable. Unfortunately, she comes with a hefty price tag, so those clothes usually only come out for important occasions such as formals.
Shockingly enough, women aren’t the only fashionistas on campus. The fraternities bring their own style to the table with their sport coats, khakis, and ties. Vineyard Vines and Southern Tide are probably the most sought out clothing brands among bros. They perfectly embody the typical frat, preppy look. For the more casual, and perhaps less expensive days, long sleeved tees and khakis seem to do the trick. In the summer, most frat brothers sport a nice pair of Chubbies and a bro tank. Now that it’s fall, it’s time to break out the Bean boots and vests. For an everyday classy, warm look, you can’t go wrong with this combination. Quarter zip sweaters are also a high point in fraternity fashion. Why not be warm and stylish? My personal favorite look is the bowties. Many frat guys wear colorful bowties when they have to attend a formal or special event and they bring their outfits to a whole new level. Say what you want about fraternities, but they know how to get gussied up when they have to.
Not everyone follows these fashion guidelines, but they do create a sort of unity within the Greek community. Most people actually try to personalize their look, which makes this campus a lot more relaxed and welcoming in a sense. No one should feel pressured to look a certain way, but when you’re in a fraternity or sorority you almost want to look like your brothers or sisters for the sake of closeness. So the people wearing their letters or dressing up for that one day of the week are trying to portray their organization and themselves in a good way. Hopefully, in a fashionable way too.