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"? la Mode Style Guide: Red sneakers, floral prints and gladiator sandals"

First week fashion around campus

The Spectrum

Since kindergarten, the first day of school comes with serious pressure – the pressure to pick out the best-ever outfit: the outfit that summed up how much you changed during the summer, the outfit that best showcases your personality, or the outfit that will finally get your crush to notice you.

In college, fashion often takes a backseat to laziness or comfort as students pull on snuggly sweatpants just a few days into the semester. But during the first week, many students are dressed to the T’s. While walking around campus I noticed a lot of high-waist shorts, drawstring printed trousers, quirky haircuts, T-shirts with aggressive quotes and a whole lot of black.

Every Friday for the rest of the semester, I’ll be bringing you style guides filled with little-known fashion icons, the most stylish subcultures (I personally can’t help but swoon over a good ole’ punk) and ideas to re-invent yourself through clothing. For today though, I’ll let campus fashion speak for itself.

Check out these students’ first week fashions and see how they nailed back-to-school.

Anthony Rizzi, junior undecided

We may be in Buffalo, but Rizzi’s outfit transports you to sunny California. Longboard in hand, he has captured the easy, breezy, laidback West Coast vibe that demands attention – without really asking for it. Rizzi picked up on the all-white trend that made a major impact in Spring 2014 collections but punched it up with simple accessories. In perfectly understated style, the red sneakers, neon sunglasses and orange watch speak for themselves. In this outfit they blend seamlessly. This outfit is as effortless and as cool as jumping on a longboard and gliding to class.

Kelsey Bynum, graduate student in political science

With just a flash of leg and a hint of strappy gladiator sandals, Bynum’s look is totally fluid and confident. This first week outfit mixes the go-to summer maxi – floral print included – with a touch of fall in the denim shirt. With no obvious trends in sight, Bynum has created a classic look perfect for the semester’s calm first few days.

Kenteh Lees, senior international business and finance

Lees is mixing it all up with a black flat-brimmed hat, a thrift floral kimono, a simple white dress and not quite combat, not quite rigger boots. In a seemingly haphazard manner, these elements seem like they shouldn’t work as well together as they do. By combining unusual pieces, Lees’ look makes a quirky statement. Hats have lately garnered much attention by the fashion social media crowd and Lees’ casually placed classic hat is distinctly cool. Lees really is the queen of mixing in this outfit, and injecting more of ‘you’ by creating new fashion formulas is the best way to make outfits truly you.

Sierra Thurston, junior fine art

These gladiator sandals are everything. In a totally unexpected way, Thurston combines warrior gear with a simple summer dress in the cutest of prints. Thurston achieved keeping the summer vibe even as school begins.

Ian Brunner, junior English major

I can imagine Brunner strolling down a wide tree-lined French boulevard, coffee in hand in this outfit. The red bandana knotted around his neck adds a twist on an otherwise classic outfit. Red, navy and white is one of the best color combinations for adding a touch of Europe to your outfits – think la Nouvelle Vague and walking along the Seine at dusk. Maybe my imagination is getting away with me. Either way, Brunner has pulled off a classic, sophisticated first-week look.

Sophie Gallivan, freshman communications and political science

Gallivan is totally adorable in this printed sleeveless dress. Black and white has been a trend for a while now, but Gallivan looks wholly herself, not jumping on any trend wagons. I appreciate the mix of medallion print with bold black and white strips. Plus, major props for wearing black with brown.

Jeongyeop Lee, sophomore business administration

What isn’t there to love about this combination? While I personally have yet to try mixing running shoes into my everyday wardrobe, Lee is rocking a crisp, printed dress shirt, well-fitting trousers and bold, red Nikes. By keeping to standards of proper fit, Lee has the sophistication to punch up his look with the extremely fashionable sneaker trend. This mix of comfort and style is perfect for campus fashion – you can run to class upon realizing your ten minutes late in the line at Starbucks, but you can impress the professor with your polished look. (Oh, and with your intelligence too, of course).

Chelby Balcerzak, junior art and architecture major

All-black is probably the most consistently awesome thing you can put on in the morning. Balcerzak nails it with a simple black crop top, high-waisted vegan leather shorts and barely there black flats. Despite the utter simplicity of her outfit, Balcerzak is on point without stepping into the pretentious territory of major trends. Crop tops and high-waisted bottoms are to be celebrated, but simplicity is the name of the game when playing with such popular trends. A look that doesn’t scream ‘look’ is always a winner.


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