It’s coming to that dreaded time of year again where we must wave goodbye to the long, empty days of slobbering about at home in our PJS, blissfully doing nothing and sleeping in until noon (the real reality of Summer, am I right?) and wave hello to the dreaded 9AM lectures, sleepless nights that for the first time in a long while do not involve Netflix binges but instead, being stressed over the deadlines of the work you should’ve completed weeks ago, hiding your bags from lack of sleep behind your sunglasses with a very strong coffee in hand and counting your pennies over and over to make sure you can afford a big tub of ice cream so that you’re able to spend your evenings crying over the fact that you have no idea what you’re doing with your life after these three years are up whilst spooning said ice cream.
As much as I’m sure we would all love to, we can’t just roll out of bed in our PJs and go to class and being tight with money, most likely struggling with your student loan and realising that you probably shouldn’t spend all your part time wages in one go on clothes, you might find that you’re left trying to budget shopping for clothes that are affordable, casual and comfy. Taking it back to basics, these essential items will become big staples in your wardrobe and could be mixed and matched with other things you may have whilst not over going your weekly allowance (unless you’re best friends with your overdraft.) Here are my picks of what to wear and some suggestions of how to style with similar pieces that you might own already:
Dresses are simple, an outfit ready to go; you don’t need to fuss about styling if you haven’t got the time or figuring what else to throw on to complete the look. They’re often cheap and can be layered with cardigans, crop jumpers, coats or jackets that you may already have. Coming in a range of cuts, patterns and fabric, you’re sure to find some that suit and flatter your style.
This a-line style, high neck knit dress can be paired with a belt to create shape, a leather jacket and whatever statement necklace you may have – gold would look gorgeous against the deep green.
This pattern, floral dress with dark tones will be perfect for the autumn months. Layer with a black crop jumper and a pendant necklace for a relaxed look.
2. Snuggly jumpers
With most of us heading back to or starting university at the end of September, it can only mean one thing: winter is fast approaching. Jumpers will become your best friend and can easily be worn with your choice of jeans or skirt (but not without layers and layers of opaque tights).
This deep red jumper would look great tucked into a leather a-line skirt – the soft knit would contrast against the leather of the skirt whilst the skirt would create a sleek, casual look.
This jumper could be paired with black skinny jeans and ballet flats to create an effortless, yet chic look. A silver statement necklace that you might own would look nice against the black, white and grey tones.
A beanie to hide your hair, a pair of sunglasses to hide your tiresome eyes (and the harsh daylight if you had too much to drink the night before) and a big bag to carry around your pile of books that you’re sure are going to break your shoulder. Accessories are something that can mix up an outfit from day to day (and can work in our favour, I’m looking at you, sunglasses!) meaning you can work with the items you have in your wardrobe but still change things up every now and again without spending too much money.
An oversized scarf is a must for autumn! Try to purchase one in colours that match what you have in your wardrobe so that it’ll go with most things – black or grey are good choices as they’re neutral tones and can be paired with clothes easily. However, if you do have lots of black clothing and are thinking of ways that you could introduce some colour, try finding a rich toned colour such as emerald green, royal blue or scarlet red.
This floral embellished collar will transform any outfit – layer under a plain jumper to create detailing.
We’ve all been there – we haven’t had time to wash our hair (or we was just being lazy) and style it or we’ve forgotten to buy a new bottle of shampoo. A hat will not only keep you warm but will make sure that no one has to see your dirty hair. Sigh. Really though, should’ve just remembered to buy the shampoo!
And lastly: You may not look as classy as Holly Golightly right now, but you can tell everyone that you’re paying homage to her, even though inside you feel like you’re dying, the lights are too bright and the bags under your eyes make you look sleep deprived (because you most likely are). Remember, just because drinks are cheaper on a weekday, doesn’t mean that you should go out. In fact, lock yourself away in your room next week.
4: 5 Minute Make-Up and Hair
Make-up is hard to come by when you’re a student – unless you’re friends with the make-up students who will do your make-up for free so that they can practise with their expensive kits. These essential make-up items are inexpensive but work to give you an everyday look on those mornings when you simply cannot be bothered. Salt spray will bring some texture to your hair, while dry shampoo will be your saviour and will also work to give your roots some volume (and to save you from hiding behind hats).