“To be nobody but myself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make me somebody else means to fight the hardest battle any human can fight and never stop fighting.” Writer Edward Estlin Cummings wrote these words with full sincerity and truth, actively demonstrating my diverse taste in fashion.

Excitement engulfs me when I look ahead to this semester. My name is Tessa Vogel and I am a freshman studying at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Since I was a child, fashion has been a passion of mine and I hope to incorporate it into my career. I plan on majoring in TV, Radio and Film Communication with a digital certificate and later move on to the big leagues in New York or Los Angeles. I am both beyond thrilled and eager to kick off my fashion experience here as a Style Guru for CollegeFashionista!

Growing up in a tiny town, my big dreams were often challenged. I was constantly being told that they were not safe, that there was too much risk involved in both television and fashion industries. I easily grew discouraged. However, one of my high school teachers conveyed to my class his aggravation with this mindset, that just because we grew up in a small town in Wisconsin, we can never amount to larger than average. It is thanks to this teacher that I strive to think big, leaving all onlookers’ criticisms aside.  I strongly believe that if you try hard enough, every success can be attained. My value of authenticity sets me apart, especially in the fashion world.

So, as I have expressed, I adore going against the grain with my style. This means keeping ahead of the crowd and catching trends before they filter through the mass population’s radar. I treat it like a game, which is what makes fashion all the more fun.

While looking on the street this semester, I look forward to catching other enthusiastic, fashion leaders. I also cannot wait to debate and discuss things like this wrap-around, Ecote dress and the controversy between simplicity versus crazy patterns like the dress shows. Shoe choice is essential with this type of dress. It allows for both dressing up, like these tie-up ankle booties show, or dressing down with simple flats. Also, can I say what a necessity this black, wide brimmed hat is? It matches with almost everything and gives any ensemble a boho feel.

So, students of UW-Madison, let’s rock this semester’s socks off and show the world how very unique you are. There are far too many clichés in society. Choose authenticity. Choose to stand alone.