It goes without saying that the quickest and most universal cure for an 8:00 a.m. class is a sweatshirt and legging combo. So much so that one may be looked down upon if they leave the dorm in something other than a splicing of sportswear and pajamas. Upon packing for my trip to Madrid, I thoroughly read my overly comprehensive orientation packet and was disappointed to discover that sweatpants and sweatshirts are not the status quo in Europe. I begrudgingly unpacked my four days’ worth of comfy clothes and wondered how I would survive the early mornings.

Hats off to the ancient Japanese for proposing a solution. During the era of imperial dynasties, an innovative genius figured out how to make a garment we now call a bathrobe intricate, beautiful and dressy. It’s no surprise why the popularity of the kimono has remained in existence since 300 BC. These silky ensembles are versatile in their patterns and lengths, evoke elegance and guarantee comfort.

This Fashionista paired her floor length kimono with a black T-shirt and shorts. The Fashionista had accessorized with gold accents, such as this rose gold watch from KORS Michael Kors. She exemplifies perfectly how a kimono can dress up solid tops and bottoms but retain an aura of effortlessness. She chose a lightweight chiffon kimono with a floral print to add a level of femininity to an achromatic foundation.

One Simple Change: While kimonos give off the illusion of refinement for your early morning classes, they can easily be transformed from day to night with minimal alterations. Throw one over a solid bodycon dress or high-waisted jeans and a crop top for an instant upgrade from casual to formal. If you tend to prefer neutral tops and bottoms, accessorize with a kimono the same way you would a scarf or statement necklace. Experiment with different lengths for various occasions.