All the Best Shows to Binge-Watch This Fall

Even though September is full of changes, adjustments, and growing schedules, it’s important to enjoy what free time you have. Personally, I love to watch—well, binge-watch—my favorite shows. Though not maximally productive, I believe that entertainment and storytelling are such significant parts of culture. You can gain a lot from decompressing with a sweater, a warm blanket, and a Netflix subscription. The following shows are my personal picks for chilling out while also getting into the spirit of fall.

PHOTO: Anna Coke

1—Gilmore Girls

When it comes to fall television, one of the first shows on my mind is always Gilmore Girls. The little town of Stars Hollow is the epitome of cozy—even when flowers are in bloom and the sun is shining. The tight-knit relationships of all the different characters mixed with a seemingly old-fashioned setting make for the perfect hot cocoa binge-watch session (with a cute mug, of course). Plus, Rory’s trials and tribulations with friends, school, and relationships often offer some pretty sound real-life advice.

PHOTO: Rachel Zuckerberg

2—Stranger Things

Second is the best, right? Stranger Things is the perfect addition to this list for a multitude of reasons. Not only is the show literally set in the fall of 1983, but the ’80s music, fashion, and overall vibe easily put the viewer in a mood most naturally paired with fall months. With season two set to premiere late this October, now is a better time than ever to put on some snuggly tacky socks and binge-watch. Stranger Things may be hyped-up to no end, but the hype is very much lived up to.

PHOTO: Jordyn Wissert

3—Master of None

If you’re a fan of laughing in general, then there is no reason why this Netflix-original shouldn’t be on your to-watch list. Comedian Aziz Ansari and writer Alan Yang, the creators of the show, never fail to deliver hilarious moments without traditional set-ups and punchlines. Master of None is clever, charming, and straight up funny: the perfect combination for back-to-school viewing. There’s also something about the New York City setting that always makes me feel transported and inspired.

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

4—The Vampire Diaries

Much like Gilmore Girls‘ town of Stars Hollow, The Vampire Diaries‘ setting of Mystic Falls provides a quaint small-town atmosphere that complements snugging-up this season. Of course, it goes without saying that the fantasy world of vampires, werewolves, and witches screams “Halloween.” Additionally, the outlandish drama of TVD’s core group of high schoolers often helps to distract me from any of my own problems or anxieties—even if just for 45 minutes.


What’s on your to-watch list for this season? I’d love to read your suggestions in the comments below! If you’re searching for other ways to get into the fall spirit, check out college fashionista’s Pinterest mood boards.

Featured photo by Jordyn Wissert.

5 Tips and Tricks to Master Your Back-to-School Routine

The phrase “back-to-school” either excites you or fills you with dread. Personally, I enjoy the shopping and organizing, but not the shove back into reality of hitting snooze at 7 a.m., scrambling to prepare a lunch, and rushing out the door with socks that don’t match. From the night before to the morning of and throughout the day, the following five tips and tricks will help you adjust to and master the first few weeks back.

1—Preplan your outfit

This is my tried and true back-to-school hack. Checking the weather and laying out your ensemble before bed can save you anywhere from 10 minutes to a half hour in the morning. Too many times have we fallen victim to trying on an outfit and then changing countless times because “something doesn’t look right.” Try on different options the night before, and then fly out the door in record time the next morning. In need of fashion inspiration? Click here to see back-to-school looks for days (after you’re done reading, of course).

PHOTO: Kelly Rogowski

2—Start waking up earlier

Wouldn’t it be nice to be a morning person? For some, going cold turkey—by suddenly waking up early after a summer of sleeping in—might work, but for me, a more natural progression is key. When back-to-school commercials start popping up, I know it’s time to start turning back the alarm clock. Begin by trying to wake up 15 minutes earlier every day for a couple of weeks. By doing so, you can go from a 10:30 a.m. wakeup time to 7 a.m. with ease. (Just make sure to also adjust your bedtime accordingly.)

PHOTO: Anna Coke

3—Pack your own lunch

This tip is a three-in-one. By packing your own lunch or snacks, you can save time, money, and eat healthier. Standing in line on campus can eat up (no pun intended) valuable study time. Opting for that cream cheese bagel might be delicious, but it shouldn’t cost five dollars and leave you hungry a half hour later. Take the time to research recipes and ideas, then head to the grocery store. Preparing your own food for the day becomes an invaluable asset as workloads get heavier.

PHOTO: Maddy Haller

4—Get organized

Personally, I prefer to keep my to-do’s on my digital calendar and notepad. However, I completely understand the preference of physically making lists and crossing off finished tasks. (Plus, those day planners sure are pretty.) Whatever your preference, what matters most is that you get organized from day one. Recording all deadlines and exams as soon as they’re on your radar will make your back-to-school transition a breeze. Being ahead of schedule has yet to fail me.

PHOTO: Maddy Haller

5—Give yourself a break

Last but not least, take breaks. When on-campus, I like to treat myself to the occasional coffee. Whether alone or with friends, somehow a warm cup of liquid seems to make everything okay (even if only for a few minutes). When at home, face masks and bubble baths work wonders to de-stress and put the focus back on you.

PHOTO: Lex Kelly

How do you make your back-to-school transition a breeze? Share your tips and tricks in the comments below, and connect with @Cfashionista on social media!

Outfits That Will Survive Your 9 to 5

Every minute counts when it comes to your morning alarm, so why waste time mulling over outfits? My trick for a seamless work morning is to keep your closet stocked with classic business casual pieces. You don’t need more options and decisions taking up your time. By fine-tuning your professional wardrobe, you can mix and match to quickly and easily create an array of classy ensembles. On top of being perfect for any professional setting, these looks are also comfortable enough to carry you through a full day of sitting, walking, emailing, jumping through hoops, and being an overall boss.

Both looks in this article highlight an absolute must-have for any professional Fashionista: slacks. I know, I know. When you see slacks you probably don’t think “chic,” but trust me when I say that they are a staple you should go out and get ASAP (after you’re done reading this, of course). With a flattering slim leg, ankle-length cut, and body-hugging fit, these are not a pair of pants you borrowed from mom’s closet.

A classic button-down tucked in with a simple belt complements the fitted pants and adds dimension. Lightweight shirts are perfect for the office because they keep you comfortably covered and shield you against the A/C without being too warm.

Lastly, you can bring one of this season’s most loved trends to work with you via these incredibly versatile and chic loafer slides. I have been wearing these non-stop to work, on the weekends, and everywhere in between. You simply can’t go wrong with these. On your arm, a leather tote is big enough to lug your lunch in but still adds a clean and professional finish to the look.

This next outfit takes a printed pair of slacks and complements them with a simple cream colored camisole and bomber. It’s important to choose a bomber that is lightweight with minimal details; this distinguishes a polished bomber from the one you’d pair with ripped jeans on the weekend.

To kick up the class of this look by about one and a half inches, try a pair of nude heels that are not too high, but not too low. You need to be able to make it through the day while still reaping the benefits of a lengthened silhouette (you can always pack the loafers in your purse, just in case).

Last but not least, you want to keep your accessories, hair, and makeup minimal in most professional settings. Dress codes vary, but in my experience, the phrase “less is more” usually applies. A simple set of jewelry is my go-to, along with a classic half-up, half-down hairstyle or low bun. On my face in these photos, and at the office, is a breathable BB cream, peach tone blush, touch of bronzer, highlight, mascara, and nude gloss to finish. Barely there, but much needed to look awake and ready to take care of business.

How do you tackle the workday? Show us on social media by tagging @CFashionista.



A year ago at this time, I was studying abroad and living a dream-worthy life in Belgium. Naturally, I’m drawn to the memories of my time in Europe and find myself scrolling endlessly through photos, envious of my own past. One of the most incredible aspects of living abroad for a brief five months was the opportunity to explore fashion. The impermanence of my living situation made me fearless to try new prints, shapes, and fabrics that I would have never dared to step out in back home. Before, my style had hit a safe plateau, and studying abroad—surrounded by unapologetic fashion sense and vibrant culture—sparked an interest in me to explore my own creativity and bring some of that back home with me.

This article is an ode to the experience that revived my love of fashion and further molded my personal style. Featured here is an ensemble from last spring that was one of my go-to looks for warm days spent strolling around botanical gardens, shopping, or jumping on a train to explore a new city.

Another love of mine that grew in Europe was thrift shopping. I frequented the same vintage secondhand store and never left empty handed. Everything worn here is from that shop, aside from the shoes and tank top. The eye-catching piece in this outfit is definitely the high-waisted printed shorts. I love how the cinched waist and loose fit create a feminine silhouette and give the illusion of a skirt. On warmer days, these shorts remain very comfortable and breathable. Adding a simple rib-knit tank top contributes texture to the look and gives some body-hugging structure to contrast the flowy, lightweight coat.

One of my favorite details from this particular look is how the bag pulls from a single piece of color in the shorts. I chose to accent the print’s blue details with a blue statement satchel—a nice change from the usual brown or black that I usually opt for. Doing this creates interest and brings in more color that still cohesively blends with the ensemble but in a less obvious way. To polish everything off, a pair of neutral, heeled sandals adds a touch of formality while still allowing my patterned shorts to steal the show.

The links in this article draw from the overall feel of my outfit but with a different color palette and some modernized details. One of the the best aspects of fashion is that you can pick and choose what you’re drawn to and adapt someone else’s style to fit your own.

Reflecting on my European-inspired style has motivated me to approach this spring with fresh eyes and also incorporate some memorable favorites. How are you planning to change up your look this season?

ALL IN THE DETAILS: Winter Comeback

While my wardrobe and I are sitting over here waiting for spring, Mother Nature has decided to go a different direction by giving Western Canada a second round of full-fledged winter. Just as grass began to peek through and lighter jackets started to emerge, the snow made a comeback a la Backstreet Boys. But, never fear! This Fashionista is here to inspire us all to embrace winter fashion a little while longer.

This outfit is perfect for those days when it’s cold outside, but not Beyond The Wall cold. By layering up with a sweater, quilted vest and oversize scarf, this Fashionista is ready for a mild-but-still-chilly winter day. Her red knit adds a pop of rich, yet subtle, color to this overall neutral palette, and her cream vest brings some light into the outfit. My favorite pieces in this look are the color-block blanket scarf and on-trend classic winter boots. This scarf adds some interest without being overwhelming and also ties together the warm and cool tones. These boots are not only cozy and functional but, together with her vest, add the quintessential winter vibe.

Not into vests or stuck in even worse weather? Just layer your go-to winter jacket over top for a slightly different look with more warmth. You can also try out different colors and patterns of scarves to make the outfit your own, or just play with layers in a way that best suits your style.

Even though many of us who are snowed in may be wishing for spring to come sooner, I encourage you to go through your winter favorites, and give them one last hoorah!

WHAT TO WEAR: Below Zero

Harsh weather can challenge fashion lovers everywhere when it comes to finding head-to-toe pieces that are both warm and trendy. This season, Canada’s west coast has been frightful, but this Fashionista’s outfit is still delightful. Sorry, but I can’t guarantee that this will be my last horribly cheesy play on words. What I can guarantee, however, is that it is possible to dress for the elements without sacrificing style, and this Vancouver-based beauty is showing us how.

Starting from the bottom (insert Drake joke here), this Fashionista is rocking a chunky style Chelsea boot, which adds both a touch of edginess and practicality that helps battle wet snowfall. Pairing these boots with cuffed and loose-fitted boyfriend jeans presents a relaxed look that is still very on-trend. Leaving a slightly open ankle offers the opportunity to play with different colors and patterns of knit socks to add your own individuality or bump up the interest in a similar look.

Warm and woven sweaters are always a good choice when hemming and hawing over the perfect snow day outfit. This Fashionista opted for a salt-and-pepper cowl neck sweater, which helps introduce some flecks of light into her monochrome palette. Cowl neck sweaters are the perfect option for those who want to venture close to—but not into­—turtleneck territory or ditch the scarf for a change. Layering a faux fur-trimmed parka like this one over top of any outfit adds both texture and warmth to a multitude of looks during the colder months. Finally, no winter ensemble is complete without a pair of knit mittens. This Fashionista’s choice of a lighter-toned neutral pair complements her fur hood while again helping to break up the dark palette.

When you wake and the temperature is below zero, how do you dress both for the weather and to impress?

STYLE GURU BIO: Alexandra Maland

Hello, readers! Thanks for clicking over to meet me. I’m Alexandra, a fourth year psychology major at the University of British Columbia’s Okanagan campus, and I am excited to be back as a Style Guru again this spring. Last term, I loved exploring both my own personal style and that of others. This term, I hope to continue discovering different styles while also refining my writing skills and building a portfolio that I can be proud of. Being a part of CollegeFashionista continues to enhance my ability to peel back the layers of an outfit and see those different pieces as part of a complete story. Being able to do so has made taking a walk across campus or downtown much more interesting and inspirational.

I would describe my personal style as evolving. What my eyes are drawn to and what I enjoy wearing seem to steadily ebb and flow. My Pinterest board at the moment would show you that I’ve been drawn to neutral palettes, simple pairings, and a mix of classic and retro pieces.

My biggest style inspiration—aside from Pinterest—is my environment. Last winter and spring, I studied abroad in Europe and found my style to slowly transform in response to the people and culture, like a kind of fashion sense osmosis. Now that I have been back in Canada for a full semester, I have watched my European-inspired looks transform to reflect a more relaxed and trendy North American style.

The outfit I’m wearing here may appear to be wishful thinking for a Canadian winter, but I refuse to give up on summer dresses simply because there’s snow on the ground. I like to adapt my personal style to fit the seasons by using pieces like this caramel knit sweater to layer up and bring the warmth to light weight dresses. By opting for a cropped cut, I’m able to show off the skirt’s pattern. With this outfit, my staple black faux-suede booties offer a bold contrast to the flared feminine dress. I enjoy mixing different types of pieces together—a floaty dress, thick sweater, black heels—until I find a combination that feels like “me.”

I hope that you’re keen to see and read about what Fashionista/os are wearing this term, because I look forward to sharing!

STYLE GURU STYLE: Women With Layers

Whether it’s your hair, personality or a piece of cake, layers make everything a lot more interesting. My absolute favourite looks for winter are those comprised of three pieces: a base, some interest and the finishing touch. This formula works for me every time and automatically configures different items from my wardrobe into a cohesive look. What appears to be a well-thought-out ensemble is actually super simple to throw together and can be tailored to suit any and all situations.

This particular outfit is trendy, yet simple and works perfectly across various settings. I’ve worn this exact look on campus, out to brunch and even to the mall. My base of choice here is a grey salt and pepper sweater featuring my favorite neckline at the moment: the mock neck. This neckline is super chic and easy to pull off because it is not quite a turtleneck, but more sophisticated than a crewneck. This sweater can definitely hold its own when paired with these jeans and boots; so, if I find myself getting warm, I don’t have to worry about compromising the overall look as outer layers come off.

My second layer is what adds some oomph to the outfit. This sheer plaid button-down peeks out from under my coat and offers a transition between the warm-toned outer layer and cool-toned inner layer. The navy blue plaid design stands out against the white and brings subtle color into this outfit without venturing far from a neutral theme. This middle piece can also hold its own as the finishing touch on top of any sweater or shirt. When the coat comes off, the outfit still looks complete and refined.

The outer layer of this look is like a top coat of nail polish: it makes everything underneath look even better. I chose to continue with neutral tones, but switched from cool to warm for more interest and contrast. The coat in this outfit gets me from A to B all warm and toasty while also adding to the overall look. It is essential for every Fashionista/o to own outerwear during the colder months that isn’t simply functional, but fashionable as well.

Finally, I can’t finish this article without a shout-out to my favorite heeled booties. Suede and block heels are extremely on-trend at the moment and add comfortable finesse that also elongates your legs. A bit of height is always helpful when rocking outfits that feature lengthy layers such as mine.

If calf-high coats, mock necks and heels aren’t your thing, then try adding layers to wardrobe staples that you already know and love. To take layered looks in a more casual direction, I enjoy pairing a simple T-shirt with a bomber or jean jacket and then sandwich a flannel in between. Voila!

What you wear is another medium that can be used to tell people a little bit about yourself, so why not show some layers?

WHAT TO WEAR: A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Fall

Not all post-worthy fashion comes from the big city. This Fashionista is showing us how casual country can make a statement during the colder months by adapting color palettes and adding details to trendy items.

When fall hits in Western Canada, the leaves change and clothing colors seem to change with them. This Fashionista is incorporating one of the most popular autumnal orange hues into her look with a warm and practical, yet stylish sweater. To fight the cold that inevitably follows falling leaves, she has a very on-trend loose-fitted denim jacket layered over top. I have fallen in love—no pun intended­—with the oversized denim trend for all seasons, and in this look the trend is instantly transformed from spring/summer to fall/winter with the addition of a faux shearling collar. If you want to create an even more cozy and layered look, I recommend adding a flannel button-down of choice between the sweater and jacket.

Another fashionable favorite of many that is sported by this Fashionista are ankle booties­. The brown leather booties in this look are perfect for keeping warm without sacrificing style, and the flat sole makes wet weather much easier to handle. Because nobody likes a high heel caked in mud, am I right?

What at first looks like a staple pair of black jeans actually features detailed stitching patterns on the knees. This detail adds an unexpected edgy appeal to the look without appearing out of place. Such details are what subtly separate a well thought out ensemble from those that are merely thrown together.

What I ultimately love about this look is how universal it is. Pairing shearling-lined denim, autumn colors and basic booties creates a stylish seasonal look appropriate for all Fashionista/os from the city to the country. How are you changing up your wardrobe this season?

ALL IN THE DETAILS: Femme Métallique

Everyone loves a good trend—and this Fashionista is rocking more than one to effortlessly achieve an eye-catching look that’s both feminine and edgy. It is easy to be scared by contemporary and returning trends in the fashion realm, as they can be nerve racking and unfamiliar. I’m sure we’ve all been in the position of putting on something super en vogue for the day only to rip it off minutes before leaving the house, but life is too short to care about whether we can “pull off” a new look.

This past summer has made most of us no stranger to the return of the half bun, choker and masculine watches (to name a few). These throwback trends have been re-emerging in full force just in time for millennial Fashionistas/os to offer their spin on some ’90s classics this fall.

More modern trends of the 2010s (thus far) that are in this look include chic draped coats, metallic details and yes, mom’s favorite: the distressed skinny jean. This Fashionista is expressing her individual style by mingling details inspired by different decades, which works to create a bold and unique ensemble. Adding a short pointed bootie and flowing neutral coat to this outfit balances out the grunge of distressed jeans with some casual class. By choosing an all-black base, a background is created to showcase select metallic details. The layered choker’s gold feature both acts as a delicate contrast to the bold black leather and brings continuity to this look by complementing the watch and bangle.

What truly makes this, or any Fashionista stand alone is a knack for combining different looks, trends and details—masculine with feminine, past with present—to create their own completely individual style.

If you’re itching, but hesitant to incorporate some new trends into your look, then try changing up one detail at a time to achieve a style that will stay quintessentially “you,” but with a sprinkle of something fresh and intriguing.