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Avoiding A Winter Style Rut

This winter has been unmistakably bitter for those living on the East Coast. There have been inches of snow and below freezing temperatures-even for those living below the Mason Dixon line. Once the holidays are over and the semester begins, it’s inevitable that the winter blues start to sink in; and for college students that means forging style for comfort. Keeping your style in the middle of winter doesn’t have to be a chore though. In fact, putting together a fabulous outfit can even help prevent those winter blues from keeping you down. It’s been a long winter already, but according to that little groundhog, Phil, there is six more weeks of it, so fashionistas everywhere must prepare for the long haul. 

1. Layering is crucial. Especially when you go to a large school like Mason where you have to walk fifteen minutes to class in what feels like the arctic tundra, layering definitely comes in handy. Knowing how to layer is one of the fundamental elements of avoiding a winter fashion rut. Layering can be a simple way to keep stylish and warmth when you’re in a rush. Pairing a long sleeve button down under a graphic sweater alongside your long winter coat is a quirky preppy mix that will block out the wind chill. 

2. Wearing quirky staples. You can also use layering to break out warmer weather pieces. Instead of avoiding that quirky staple piece you love that maybe isn’t the most practical piece in your closet, wear it with layers to add some fun to your winter wardrobe. A funky kimono can be thrown on over a cable knit sweater or a pair of cute fringe socks can make summertime wedges versatile for a sunny but cold winter day. 

3.  A pop of color. A lot of people tend to steer clear of color in the winter and stick to darker outfits, be creative with your outfits and don’t be afraid to add some pigment. To avoid a winter style rut it’s important to use all aspects of your closet. Throw on some of the neon colors you reserve for summer by layering these bright pieces with neutrals that bring out the color pigment while still making it versatile to wear in winter. A bright red skirt paired with a beige winter coat will set you apart from a sea of black that normally swarms the streets in January. 

4. Oversize everything. One fabulous (and easy) way to look stylish, stay warm and be comfortable is investing in oversized pieces. This winter there has been a particular obsession in the fashion world with everything oversized. It’s a simple element that can be really versatile, especially in the colder months. The key to wearing oversized pieces is pairing it with another more form fitting piece, so that you maintain your shape and don’t look sloppy. Pair an oversized top, such as a coat or sweater, with a form fititng bottom, like a pair of skinny jeans or maybe a pencil skirt and tights. Throw on a pair of boots with a few accessories, and you instantly have a chic street style look that you can put together in minutes. 

5. Bold patterns. Winter fashion is well known for being bold in the pattern department. What’s great about these big pattern looks is that you don’t need to think much more about the rest of your outfit because you’ll need to maintain the neutrality to balance the boldness. It’s a look that makes you instantly more chic with little effort. Plaid and houndstooth are just a few of my favorite winter patterns, because they’re edgy, chic and can be found on almost every article of clothing. 

6. Accessories galore. For anyone who’s an accessories junkie, this winter is the perfect time to make use of all your fun accessories you’ve been collecting throughout the year. From beanies, infinity scarves and studded gloves to fun jewelry and bold lip colors. There’s no better time to throw on a little bit of everything than when it will keep you warm and stylish all throughout these rough winter days. 

 

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Helen Ray

George Mason University

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