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WHAT TO WEAR: Library

I walked into my school’s library the other day and was immediately let down by the lack of color and excitement. I know that the library is not the most fun place in the world, but Paley was one step short of the excitement found at the dentist’s office. There wasn’t any color to be found, nor flowing creativity or smiles. It seemed as though I was in a labyrinth of black-on-black sweatsuits and sorrow. This was not a place I wanted to work.

That’s why when I saw this Fashionista roaming around, I knew I had to stop her. Despite the grayness of the skies, this Fashionista popped among her fellow scholars. And look at that smile—this Fashionista looks like she hasn’t had a bad day in years. Her style choices have inspired me to think twice about my outfit choice when heading off to the library. Work is hard as it is, we should all at least try to make it a little more lively by adding color in our lives. Taking a few more minutes out of your day to select a more up-beat, colorful outfit might just be the inspiration that you need to get your creative juices flowing in a group project or on a dull paper.

Take this Fashionista’s style advice when wondering what to wear to the library. Colors are key. First, slip into the most comfortable pair of jeans that you own so that you’re not needed to take walks around the stacks just to feel your legs again. The shoes you select are also important. Pick your go-to winter boots, so that you know you’re in something that will keep you warm and snug. Your top doesn’t need to be some extravagant blouse, simply throw on a colorful T-shirt that you feel comfortable in. Wrap a busy scarf around your neck (which can also double as a pillow for your well-earned, mid-studying nap). Lastly, add a coat that’ll make you stand out—one that will make you turn heads. This will give you the confidence that you need to conquer whatever schoolwork your professors throw at you. Then, hopefully, your smile will be as bright as this Fashionista’s, too.

One Simple Change: Giving a presentation in your next class? Swap out your basic denim for a pair of skinny black pants that have a nice stretch, like these. Then, pack a pair of metallic flats in your backpack to slip on right before you head in. The colors will give you confidence, and you will be more than dressed for the part.