Coming into college, I had no idea being a college student came with an unspoken uniform...
College students tend to dress in a pack mentality. In fact, even in a world without uniforms, there are several clothing items that almost every student owns. It may be the name brand or off brand version, but some variation of these staple clothing items eventually become a part of every young 20-something's wardrobe. Even if you don't come into college with them, these items sneak their way into everybody's closet. To save the complexity of trying to describe every style and variation of these college clothing icons, I'm choosing to stick to the name brand or original version of each of these fashion heavy hitters. Here are 8 clothing items that every college student eventually has in their closet:
1. That one professional outfit.
Unless you're a business student or close to graduating, I would be surprised if you had more than one. This is the outfit that was either a hand-me-down from a parent or was bought for cheap at either GoodWill, Target, or Khols. You wear it exclusively for interviews, job fairs, or big presentations. When you do have it wear it, it is basically a given that you're going home to put on the "Groutfit" (see item 7). It doesn't matter how uncomfortable you are though, because when you do wear it you look super adultish.
2. The generic college logo shirt you got for free at an event.
Take your pick, I guarantee you have been given more than one. Is it your Welcome Week t-shirt? Did you volunteer or join an organization? Free sporting event giveaway? Did you fill out a survey? Did you randomly walk into the library on the right day? Well, congratulations! You now have a free t-shirt. It probably has either the name of your university, a cheesy saying related to your university or a picture of your mascot cheaply screen printed onto it. Regardless, you lazily wear this shirt at least once a week, whether you want to admit it or not.
Or the off-brand equivalent. Need to slide on shoes to walk to the class you're late for? Birks. Need to take out the trash? Birks. Need to look nice for class? Fancy Birks. Basically, Birks go with anything, and are really, really comfortable. So comfortable, a whole generation is willing to look over the fact that they look like Jesus-sandals.
Is it too cold for your Birks? Then move on to Uggs, or your other variation of furry boots. Perfect for walking across campus in a blizzard when they should have canceled classes but didn't. Dress them up with jeans and a sweater, or dress them down with leggings and a sweatshirt. If you don't want full boots, I'm sure someone you know will let you borrow their moccasins or slippers.
Perfect for when it's too hot for a coat and too chilly for just a shirt. You can tie them around your waist when you're hot without looking like a 5-year-old, but you can also wear them over a shirt and still avoid the fashion police. Comes in various levels of warmth and even more various colors
6. The "going-out" outfit.
Similar to the professional outfit, but for the exact opposite occasion. Generally, includes some form of tight-fitting top and/or jersey, and depending on the time of year you can pair with leggings, skirt, shorts, or jeans. In reality, the top is most likely what makes the outfit and it's something you most likely hide in the bottom of your closet when you move home in the summer.
7. The "Groutfit".
So you woke up five minutes before a class that is a ten-minute walk away. Cue the "Groutfit." For anyone who doesn't know a "Groutfit" is an all grey outfit (which you could have likely slept in if you could have foreseen these circumstances, which should never actually leave the confines of the dorm room, generally consisting of an oversized t-shirt, baggy sweats, and whatever shoes you can throw on in the least amount of time. (Looking at you Birks!) Throw the hair into a messy bun and quickly grab your books and you're good to go.
8. A set of color-and-brand-coordinating work out gear.
While this outfit can vary in appearance, everyone has it regardless of whether they realize it or not. This outfit can have a variety of purposes. You can wear it to class when you're too lazy to look actually cute but don't want to go full "Groutfit." It is also perfect for when you plan on going to the gym, but are self-conscious about who you might actually see while you're there. Worn most often to instructed work-out sessions or Monday classes.