Rebooting Your Winter Wardrobe on a Budget

By Frankie Wilkin

With the winter months slowly rolling in and the temperature dropping, you’ll find that your go-to graphic t-shirt and jeans combo just won’t cut it anymore. The ‘90s and ‘00s fashions are making a comeback via second-hand selling apps and social media apps being overrun by e-girls and VSCO girls. 

Here are some tips and tricks to help you stay cute and warm on a cold campus.

1. Layer Up, Girl!

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

Contrary to popular belief, the lifespan of your favorite tank top or t-shirt doesn’t have to end when September comes around. If you’re feeling like you didn’t get enough wear out of that super cute summer top, layer it over a thin long sleeve or turtleneck for a slightly warmer look. Pair a patterned piece (like this pink leopard print slip) with a basic white or black long sleeve, or use stripes to give your favorite graphic t-shirt some depth. If you want to get bold, mix and match textures and patterns, like layering a mesh long sleeve underneath. Try balancing out your pieces––if you’re going to layer two different patterns, make sure the colors match, otherwise keep it simple by only using one statement item per piece (like this black turtleneck with a graphic Nike sweatshirt).

2. Secure some Personality Items

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

If you’re looking to invest in standout and statement pieces, the best places to look are your local thrift stores. The best pieces are the ones you can wear a multitude of times with boundless outfits. Choose something that makes you feel comfortable, but will definitely push your style boundaries, like a snakeskin-patterned leather jacket or a patterned ‘80s sweater. Statement jackets and sweaters are perfect for the winter months because not only will they bring an element of confidence to your outfit, but they’ll keep you warm and allow you to pair them with basic items you probably already have in your closet. Most importantly, find items that will make you feel like yourself! Don’t buy a bustier if you don’t like showing skin, and feel free to keep away from heavily colored items if you prefer a darker-toned outfit. There are plenty of statement pieces to choose from nowadays, and you’re sure to find one that matches your style. 

3. Accessories for a Basic Fit

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

If you’re looking to create cute looks without straying too far from a classic fit, look no further than piling on accessories to give your look a bit of an edge. Add a leopard print or a chain belt to add some depth to your ensemble, or pair a cute silver choker or necklace to make your favorite ensemble stand out! Match your necklace to your belt to make a statement or put on a pair of colored earrings to go with the colors on your shirt. Most people say that you should only use silver or gold in your outfits, but layering a gold chain necklace with a silver choker makes for a look with depth! Try not to be afraid to stray a little outside of your comfort zone with accessories. If you’re feeling a little conservative, start with one statement accessory and build your way up. Even just one piece (like cute crystal earrings) will help pull the look together.

4. Color Coordinating to Keep it Classy

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

Photo Credit: Frankie Wilkin

Color coordinating is one of the many ways to get away with the most simple outfits in the winter. If you’re looking for layers, try using a graphic t-shirt over a turtleneck with similar colors, or pair your favorite colored sweater or sweatshirt with a matching belt! If you’re feeling bold, an all-black or all-blue outfit is the perfect way to make a statement without putting too much effort into your fit. If you’re feeling a little more conservative, try pairing colored pants like black jeans or corduroys with a top that has a similar color scheme (for example, this Roma graphic tee and these ‘70s corduroys). With color coordinating, you can throw together a variety of items while looking like you planned it.

No matter whether you choose to thrift or use your favorite clothing items when rebooting your wardrobe, each of these suggestions is open to interpreting in your own style. Whether you choose to layer up or color coordinate, you will look great this winter!