Fashion at York

One of the most iconic films of our generation once stated “On Wednesdays we wear pink!” But now fresher ladies and gentlemen is the day in which you graduate from high school/sixth form fashion rules. Silly guidelines of what brands you will or will not wear should be left behind. No more fun suggestive evening attire. Start to consider Mark and Spencers as a great place for quality rather than quantity clothing, and above all abandon the colour pink or skinny jeans if you are male! I hope you now get a taste for University style, joke.

This is not the case at York University. For starters, the existence of social groupings still applies and therefore dress codes are visible from the Fresher day one. All barriers you once felt in the playground, although weakened, are still thriving on campus. If you are taking psychology, you should be aware of the findings by Princeton psychologists Janine Willis that reveals it takes less than a tenth of a second to form an impression of a stranger. With this in mind, I suggest that you select your first day clothing carefully. What does this top say about me? Are my shorts too short? Are yellow shoes too brash? Or my girlie dilemma of having the horror of huge roots, yikes! So many fashion faux pas to commit on just day one.

However, you should also see this monumental event in your life as the chance to reinvent yourself. No one knows you and therefore we all get a clean superficial judgement slate. Consider new clothing and hairstyles, but please do not read my recommendations as me suggesting you to not be yourself. I am merely pointing out the fun and flirtation with style you can now have outside of the school bubble. You cannot remove your personal tastes in music or social attraction, but with the fresh start University grants us you should seize this moment as your chance to shine and look your best. After all, even if you are not worries about your peer’s approval, your tutors will also subconsciously judge you.

With this academic stance in mind, the everyday decision of what to wear to lectures and seminars is an underestimated problem. The horrid uniform that we are all guilty of being sucked into consists of the sloppy joggers, stained hoodie or for some brave souls, last nights club wear. The walk of shame has been known to trot into a seminar or two. One of the major fashion tips I can offer, and is one I still struggle to follow is that although it is just a mere lecture or seminar and therefore a few hours out of your life, your clothes really do matter. If not for your own pride in appearance, if the clothes you wear feel like cotton wool, one’s attention span plummets. Praise must be given to the rare breed of young men that seem to permanently be wearing smart tweed jackets plus second skin chinos to lessons! Hear hear!

The best event during fresher’s fortnight that displays the lack of fashion restrictions is Slag and Drag. This Derwent College event is legendary. It is the one night of Freshers “…where a girl can dress like a total slut and no other girls can say anything about it” Cady Heron. It is a fashion mixture of a pussycat doll’s video, Rocky Horror Picture Show with a hint of Geordie Shore. A potent fashion mental image. Although the girls rock out in their best bra and French knicker combo, the lads push the boundaries even more so. In the true spirit of fashion, it is pure fun.

A final thought would be to express yourself in your University clothes. Go out and buy garments you were once afraid to wear and start a fresh. At the core you are still the same person and no matter what you will find friends that like you for you and no just your clothes. The main message I am trying to provide is that University is a new stage in your life and therefore this is the best time for a change of style and look progression. Be as experimental in clothing as you will be with all the great new experiences and dilemmas that the next few years will bring you. Good luck and shine.



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