STYLE GURU BIO: Melissa Darin

Hi there, my name is Melissa and I study fashion merchandising at the beloved Kent State University. I’m a summer baby (where are my Geminis at?), habitual thrifter, adventure seeker, and lover of life. This is my first semester writing for CollegeFashionista and I can’t wait to (hopefully) inspire you guys and get inspired as well!

Fashion is pretty cool because there are no rules. Sometimes rules are created, but then it’s always fun to break them. It is the purest way to show who you are without saying anything. I especially find myself drawn to how people dress on a day-to-day basis and how they create their what I like to call “personal uniforms.” These personal uniforms help them conquer any challenges life may throw at them in a day by helping them feel confident and true to themselves. Friends, I’m going to make it my goal this semester to encourage you to embrace your “personal uniform.” Then the world is yours.

My “personal uniform” is a mix of thrift shop finds, items from the beautiful land of Italy (study abroad-er, over here!), denim in all different shapes and forms, and a sense of effortless ease that leans slightly bohemian and/or slightly edgy. One year ago, I cut my hair off into a lob/bob or whatever you may call it. The only way to describe that was liberating and I have truly never felt more like myself, so that is also part of my “personal uniform.”

Although we may not live in the mod 1960s or roaring 1920s, I believe that we live in a transformative and revolutionary time in terms of fashion. There is no single particular “look.” You can combine elements from any era or any time and create a look that is purely you. I always look for vintage inspiration when creating my “personal uniform” and find myself drawn to the ‘60s, ‘70s, and ‘90s the most. Fashion has never been more free or individualistic. It’s never been easier to embrace who you are through how you dress.

In this look, I am wearing my cozy, oversize Free People coat to stay warm in the bitter Michigan weather and a cool pair of fray hem denim that I made myself. I accessorized with a silk scarf, a cheetah-print leather bag from Italy, fishnet socks, and cut-out Jeffrey Campbell booties. I love a simple outfit with interesting details and unique accessories. This is such an easy way to dress for a girl on-the-go.

I hope you enjoy reading my articles this semester, friends! Stay rad, be yourselves, and keep breaking those rules in fashion!