Freshers Fashion

September 15, 2016

So it's finally happening, you're leaving home and entering the big wide world of independence. I wanted to do a post on Freshers Fashion, giving you a general idea of some good starting points for outfits at Uni. Starting University is a really good time to reinvent your wardrobe and make more daring fashion choices that you normally wouldn't. You want to make a good first impression and if you've found it an incredibly daunting process having to decide what to wear for a night out, lecture, or even moving in then I've got you covered!

Let's start this chronologically. It's the big day - you're moving into your new home for the next year. This is the first time your flatmates will have seen you and you want to make a good impression. When moving in you want a look that's stylish but also comfy for the car journey lugging all your stuff across the country.

Jumper - £49, John Lewis ; Trousers - £32, Topshop ; Neckerchief - £10, Urban Outfitters ; Shoes - £37, Vans
This look is the epitome of cool and comfy. I love this jumper, it's very Whistles-esque but at a much more student friendly price. These trousers hit on the pyjama trend but are a classic, stylish fit. The neckerchief adds a playful splash of colour and is a chic yet cute touch. Slip on vans are super comfy too, such an easy shoe that will go with anything.

So you've moved in, you're getting along wonderfully with all your new pals and it's the first night of Freshers Week. But what are you going to wear? First let me warn you that if you rock up in heels and a dress you will feel incredibly overdressed. Nights out are becoming much more casual, which I for one am glad about, as it means you can wear comfy trainers and dance away to your hearts content.
I would definitely invest in a good pair (or two) of trainers before Uni, you will get so much wear out of them. Opt for a versatile pair like Adidas Superstars / Stan Smith's or Reebok Classics. I'm a big trainer fan and have included two pairs I'm pining for in the edits below.
Word of warning: some clubs may enforce a stricter dress code, especially for boys, where trainers aren't allowed. Perhaps have a scout online to see if you can see anything about certain clubs in your new hometown. More often than not if you've got a dressy outfit on with a pair of trainers the bouncers aren't going to put up a fight, but it's worth bearing in mind.

Night Out Option 1 -
Skirt - £42, Topshop ; Top - £26, Urban Outfitters ; Bralette - £28, Calvin Klein ; Bomber - £40, Monki ; Trainers - £90, Adidas
All black is a popular choice - cool, sexy, you name it, you've got it - but I would always want to add a splash of colour. How gorgeous is that mustard yellow? It's going to be a big hit this season and that bomber is perfect. You can't go wrong with a leather skirt and I'm really loving sheer tops at the moment (Urban Outfitters have a good selection). Those trainers are such a winner, the touch of leopard skin is also a nod to the ultimate fashion print which is going to be a big trend this Autumn/Winter.

Night Out Option 2 -
TShirt - £22, Adidas ; Dress - £42, Topshop ; Earrings - £5, ASOS ; Shoes - £80, Adidas ; Clutch - £45, Whistles ; Lipstick - £24, Nars
A great way to dress down a party dress is by teaming it with a tshirt, this Adidas one is ideal (you can't go wrong with Adidas in my opinion) and sportswear is a v. popular look at Uni. The metallic dress still keeps it glam for evening wear though and is perfect for a club look. Teamed with those paint splattered Adidas Superstars and a red clutch, with lipstick to match, you have a total winner.
Tip: Buy Nars makeup through ASOS and get your 10% student discount on it!

Finally, Freshers Week is over - you've barely slept and your body is severely punishing you for all the drinking and late nights but despite all that you're excited to start lectures. You want something that makes you feel comfortable and at the same time confident.

Notebook - Kate Spade, £20 ; Pen - Trouva, £4 ; Watch - Casio, £45 ;  Skirt - Miss Selfridge, £28 ; Top - Mango, £20 ; Bag Charm - Lipsy, £10 ; Bag - ASOS, £32 ; Boots - Next, £42 ; Jacket - GAP, £80
This classic look has that nailed. The leopard print boots are a must, it's a popular item at the moment (River Island, Topshop and Joules are all worth a look), I really like these ones from Next - the heel isn't too high and I prefer the print in a more browny colour than yellow. You can't go wrong with stripes teamed with denim - Gap's new denim range is really cool and there's a huge range of denim jackets available. This bag from ASOS is super gorgeous and really sturdy for carrying books, laptop etc. There's always the worry with high street bags that someone will have the same, add a lil charm, ribbon or keyring to give it a touch of individuality.
Obviously there are cheaper note books than a Kate Spade one, if you fancy a treat this initialised option is cute. But a more practical and cost effective choice can easily be picked up from Wilko or Tesco or somewhere along those lines. I'd recommend Oxford Campus, they're a good price and the paper quality is excellent (what a boring sentence).

Most of the links I have provided are to student discount friendly sites such as ASOS, Topshop and Urban Outfitters. It's definitely worth knowing which shops provide student discount as the 10% saving really makes a big difference when you're on a student budget. Also, keep your eyes peeled for student discount weekenders (often at the start of term) where you can get 20% off at a wide range of shops.

Another tip would be to dress for the climate. No matter which Uni you go to in the UK you're going to have a cold winter, in particular Northern Unis. I moved further North from Leeds to Newcastle and the change in temperature is noticeable. A suitable coat is a necessity. I would recommend a good puffer - check out ASOS for athleisure pieces such as this or Topshop has a good range at the moment.

Athleisure is a big trend at uni - brands like Adidas, Nike, Reebok. Fila and Ellesse are very popular. Probably too popular, it almost seems that by trying to look different you end up looking like everybody else. I would maybe stick to a couple of pieces - a tshirt or a sweater are good buys but don't overdo it.
I also reckon the 90s grunge trend will be big, invest in a pair of dungarees and a couple of oversized dresses - juxtapose these with floral dresses or introduce some clashing prints.

My one item to avoid is the school leavers hoody. Nothing says you're holding onto the past more than wearing a hoody adorned with the names of ex class mates, leave it at home.

Fancy dress is always fun at Uni, I'd pack one staple fancy dress outfit (something witty but also recognisable - a figure from pop culture is always good), defo pack some glitter and something like a pair of fairy wings for lazier options.

Final Tips:
Packing clothes for Uni is tricky especially if you currently have a vast wardrobe. Your Uni wardrobe is likely to be very small, pack seasonally and think to yourself "how often will I wear this?" and "what will I wear it with?" The last thing you want is items that don't go with everything, that are only suitable for rare occasions taking up valuable wardrobe space. One of the main things I realised after my first year was how few of my clothes I actually regularly wore which led to a massive (much needed) clear out.
When your student loan comes in you're tempted to spend it all on clothes you've had on your wishlist for ages. Don't. Unless you want to be living off a diet of your flatmate's unwanted crusts of bread and cheese with the mould scraped off for the rest of the term. Buy the essentials only, look for gaps in your wardrobe and see what you actually need and will wear - a pair of trainers, a coat or a good pair of jeans are worth investing in.
Budgeting is key. Set aside a certain amount of money for clothes but priorities things such as food, books and a social life.
Let charity shops become your best friends. You can pick up amazing pieces in charity shops for a fraction of the price. Forget the stereotype and embrace them.
Finally, be yourself. I may have just bombarded you with information but it is most important that you be true to yourself and your own unique style, wear what makes you comfortable and your confidence will shine through. Cheesy as this all may be, you go to University as an individual - stay true to your individual style.

Thanks for reading! Good luck at University, I hope you have the most amazing time.
Comment below with any questions or let me know what items you'll be wearing this term.

Soph x

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