Hello readers of A Beautiful Mystery! My name is Maria Wendt and I blog about modest fashion and style at The Orange Purse.
Part One: The Essentials
Since school is starting soon (less than a week for me!) I wanted to talk about some essential staples every college girl should have in her closet. In creating this list, I wanted to pick things that wouldn’t be on your average college girl list. Like a “Little Black Dress”. Everyone knows that. So here are five essential (and specific) things that every college girl should own.
1. A White Cable Knit Sweater
This may seem like a very specific item to start with but let me tell you, this is incredibly versatile.
I bought a white sweater last year and I used it so much it pilled and now I have to get a new one.
As you can see, you can basically wear a white cable knit sweater with anything. Plus, it’s totally comfy - like getting to wear a polar bear all day long.
2. Tall Riding Boots
If you don’t have a pair, you should totally get one! These are great for walking to class in the rain or snow and still looking super cute and put together.
I certainly don’t have a lot of money (I’m in college, who does?), but I did invest in a nice pair of riding boots and they lasted all year long and still look nearly new.
Riding boots look amazing with jeans, dresses and skirts and can really take an outfit from “eh” to “wow, cutsie paloosi!”.
3. A Pair of Skinny Jeans (that actually fit!)
Something that I learned this year was how to buy a pair of jeans that fit my body type. It feels really good being able to walk out and know you look good in a pair of jeans that flatter (yet don’t hug) your body.
Wearing jeans modestly can certainly be tricky because some jeans can be pretty tight. It’s basically a matter of finding the balance between ugly baggy mom jeans and painted on jeans.
4. A Comfy Skirt
There are skirts and then there are comfy skirts. In my opinion, the perfect skirt is a skirt that makes you feel like a million bucks in more ways than one. You know you look fabulous but you also feel amazing because the skirt is like a swishy blanket around you.
I wrote a blog post about my all time favorite skirt (and why I love it so much) here. (It also showcases my personality and is a great post to read to get a feel for my sense of style.)
5. Lightweight Hoodie
There’s a huge difference between a pull-over hoodie and a lightweight, soft, zip-up hoodie. Lightweight hoodies are genius because you can wear them with skirts.
It took me a long time to figure that out. I used to think that you could only wear hoodies with jeans and shorts. But I realized that if the hoodie is thin enough to not overwhelm the upper body with thick, heavy fabrics, they actually can go with skirts. As long as the skirt isn’t very dressy.
Basically, the formula is this: nicer hoodie + casual skirt = success.
Part Two: Putting It All Together
Looking cute and put-together is not the most complicated thing in the world. I have a theory that looking put together is more of a formula than anything else. Something + something + something = fabulous outfit.
I mentioned using a formula for wearing hoodie earlier and the idea behind that is basically how I get dressed in the morning.
While this method may not apply for everyone, it's an interesting theory because it helps build complete outfits.
The first combination I want to talk about is the
1. Classy dress
Dress + cardigan + cute shoes + accessories = adorable
You can see how this outfit has a complete and finished look to it. The reason behind this is because I added equations to the formula.
Below are several other examples.
The chambray dress becomes a canvas for colorful accessories and a brown leather messenger bag.
This classy outfit sets the focus on the dress and everything is kept subtle and muted.
2. Skinny Jeans
Jeans + nice top + riding boots + accessories = also adorable
Pretty self-explanatory concept here - I absolutely LOVE the way skinny jeans look so classy in riding boots. This is my go-to look during the school year.
I love the statement necklace on this one. Also, have you noticed how versatile these boots are?
Can we talk about how adorable these shoes are??
3. Favorite skirt
I already mentioned how awesome it is to have a favorite skirt earlier in this post. But a favorite skirt + cute top + shoes + accessories = adorable times three.
I hope you enjoyed this list! I’m sure every girl has something in her closet that she loves - what is yours? I would totally love to hear about it (and probably end up buying it!)