One murky Southern evening, I encountered a simple statement that defines my view on fashion and college in the most reliable of sources, my Twitter feed. Originally from the famed playwright Oscar Wilde, this insightful nugget of wisdom, “You can never be overdressed or overeducated,” could not be more perfect advice for me or any ambitious College Fashionista or Fashionisto.
Maintaining a signature personal style takes determination. My temptation at a high school without uniforms was to wear sweatpants and sweatshirts every day, but instead I developed a foundation of versatile, high-quality pieces that transition as easily from high school to college as they do from summer to fall. My durable Anthropologie blouses, skirts, and dresses have seen me through plenty, and I swear by the beauty of basics at Old Navy and the Gap.
What I discovered that the extra five minutes I spent putting on fresh clothes – as opposed to those in which I slept – made all the difference later in my day. Taking my fashion seriously allows others to take me seriously too; thus my wardrobe centers on classic lines and trusted staples, smart choices that are both practical and modern. To that end, I seek out pieces like this wearable and attention-grabbing blue dress by Tibi.
I love infusing vibrant and unexpected color into my look, particularly through nail polish; two favorite pigments are Nails Inc.'s Notting Hill Carnival and OPI's Gargantuan Green Grape. As for traditional accessories, nothing beats Amrita Singh's bangles or a bright pair of earrings for extra punch. And with my short hair, I adore overthrowing the standard bobby pin regime with an eye-catching barrette.
What I think Oscar Wilde indicated that hit so close to home for me was his call for courage. Working hard doesn't necessitate a drab uniform but encourages the expressive confidence to wear any outfit at any time, and having the smarts to choose exquisite pieces is what cements a reputation as a chic style maven. In my first semester as a freshman at the University of Notre Dame, I am certain that my core style values will be tested against my commitment to my studies and the allure of warm sweatpants in the cold Indiana winter; however, I eagerly await the style evolution that's sure to arise from those trials. But through thick coats and my soon-to-be-forgotten thin tank tops, my – and Mr. Wilde's – dedication to personal distinction is sure to guide me on a new journey into the stylish unknown.