Although it's not quite the 4th of July yet, I have always loved the patriotic shades of red, white and blue together all year round. This week, this Fashionista shows us how to rock the feminine look while keeping it oh so American. Never think you can pull off the maxi look just right? Nonsense! She'll show you just what to do.

Name: Jessica Boyle

Major: Public Relations

Year: Freshman

CollegeFashionista: What are you wearing?

Jessica Boyle: The skirt is from Urban Outfitters, my necklace is from Forever 21, my bracelet is Stella and Dot, my watch is Marc Jacobs, my tank is from Forever 21 as well and my shoes are from Target!

CF: How would you describe your style?

JB: I like bright colors and comfortable loose-fitted items. My friends make fun of me because I wear floral a lot, but I would describe my style as very feminine.

CF: What does style mean to you?

JB: I look like a bum going to class, but on weekends I love exploring my style and playing around with new flirty looks. I think style is something that people should always explore and have fun with when they can. You should never be afraid to try new things!

CF: Where do you get most of your inspiration from?

JB: I love seeing what other people around school are wearing, and getting ideas from them! It's fun to play off of that. I also love Miley Cyrus… she dresses grungy but is always so pretty about it. I also think Blake Lively is always so put together and girlie.

How To: To get this summery yet sophisticated look, a long maxi skirt is the key item. A bright color like Jessica's is always a good start. If you decide on a more neutral color, you can then play up the colors elsewhere. A simple tank or tube top should complement the skirt along with some simple jewelry. A small necklace or some wrist candy may be the key! And to finish the look off, a minimal strap sandal or wedge will bring this feminine appeal to perfection!


It's finals week and that only means one thing: loads of caffeine, sleep deficiency and baggy sweats all day and all night. As I sit outside of the library on this warm May day, I see a Fashionista bursting with floral color submerge from the crowd of students taking their cigarette study breaks and those scramming to their next exams. If I didn't know any better, I would have thought she was headed out for a day in the sun at a music festival. Naturally, I had to talk to her and get her style insight.

Name: Danielle O'Brien

Major: Studio Art and Art Education

Year: Sophomore

CollegeFashionista: What are you wearing?

Danielle O'Brien: I'm wearing a floral sundress that I got from a thrift store, a loose boy jean jacket from a thrift store as well, this belt I got as a gift from Africa, the boots I got offline and my earrings are pieces from a chandelier.

CF: How would you describe style as a way to identify yourself?

DO: I see style as a way of expressing yourself. I personally like to dress a bit unusually while still being put together. So, I mix a lot of Urban Outfitters meats H&M with personal finds from thrift stores.

CF: What advice would you give for someone trying to find their own style?

DO: Don't be afraid to try and pull off new looks because it isn't as hard as people may think. Always try to be daring!

CF: Where do you get most of your inspiration from?

DO: I get most of my style inspiration from my friends and people around me mostly!

How To: To get this colorful look, a fitted yet somewhat loose colorful sundress is the key item. Once you find that, it is easy to build around it! Start off with a loose yet light jean jacket or denim button-up to layer, a Western style belt and some boots to complete this girlie yet cowgirl-inspired look! The sun doesn't stop shining and this beautiful May weather doesn't skip a beat just because it's exam time…so neither should your true colors!


As we quickly approach finals week just around the corner, James Madison Fashionistas/os have been taking to the campus for their last days of the semester. The style mix has been mainly two extremes: extremely dressed down in the library attire of sweats, flip flops, comfy shirts and gym clothes, or wedges, sun dresses and great variety. However on this particular day, it was a Fashionista with glistening sequins and a white pixie bob gliding through the crowd on her beach cruiser that caught my full attention. 

Name: Emily Wyman 

Major: Public Management and Public Policy Administration

Year: Junior

CollegeFashionista: Describe what you're wearing.

Emily Wyman: This may be a bit dificult. My sequin top is from a thrift store in Richmond, my shoes are Rumors from Target, some basic brown tights and a skirt I think I had since high school that's Billabong, sort of beach-girl. And my earrings are from this tiny little thrift shop in the Outter Banks. 

CF: What does style mean to you?

EW: It's an outward expression of who you are and a way to own up to and make a statement of the person you are. For me style is not blending in, and I think it's impostant to not look the same as everyone else. To me it's why not? I just have so much fun with it. For me, the motivation doesn't come from trying to one-up everyone else and desire to look so good all the time, it's more that I love to put pieces together and use fashion and style as an art form. And the bottom line is confidence. You could be wearing some pretty weird stuff, but if you walk around and own it, that's how new trends begin. 

CF: So it seems that you get a lot of inspiration from the people around you. Is there a magazine or icon that influence your style too?

EW: I honestly get almost all of my influence from people-watching. I love NYLON, but I don't have much time to read it consistantly. Also, Free People has great style. However, you can find that stuff anywhere. I love thrift stores, and most of my clothes are from thrift stores. I just love the stories behind different pieces of clothes, and the feeling of wearing clothes that have already been loved! 

CF: What are two items that you can't live with out?

EW: Lately, earrings have been my thing…since I don't have long hair any more! I love the ones I'm wearing from the story behind them, and another pair of cork earrings that my friend made me I wear a lot. And I really love backpacks — I have three different ones that I go through. But overall, I'm not super attached to things. I have this weird thing where I don't like repeating outfits. 

CF: Coming from Virginia Beach to JMU, do you think your style has altered from the beach girl look all?

EW: Definitely. I came to school as a total beach girl… I mean I worked at a surf shop! I was a walking advertisement for Billabong and Vans my freshman year. But my style has grown into a more hipster feel. I think that has been influenced by my friends that have gotten into the music scene alot.  Also I have my bike now and I live down town, so my look has transformed accordingly in that sense as well. 

How To: As you can see, great fashion doesn't have to be obtained with the sacrifice of major spending. Emily checks out thrift stores, vintage shops and consignment shops for her originial pieces. To get her look, checking out your local Good Will — you may be surprised. Look out for a sequin top, a high-waisted denim skirt and some brown tights. But always make it your own.


This week, I decided to try a variation of the colorful shorts that I've recently been ranting and posting about. So we're taking a pitstop away from the hobo and the bold and switching paces to a more tuned-down fad: The Prep. I know, I know, when you hear that word, you isntantly think of cable knit cashmires, pearls, Lacostes and argyle socks. But this isn't always the case. This Fashionista shares her version of Prep and I promise, you'll be wanting to try your hand at this look if you haven't already. 

Name: Sara Sommerstein

Major: Interdisciplanary Liberal Studies, Education Minor

Year: Senior

CollegeFashionista: What are you wearing?

Sara Sommerstein: A Ralph Lauren button-up, Land's End shorts, Jack Rogers sandals, Ray-Bans, a Pandora bracelet, Tiffany's earings and my watch is from Target!

CF: What kind of style best describes you?

SS: I like very simple. I would always rather throw on a dress than a skirt and a top. Overall, I like things that are easy to wear and more loose fitting so I can move around and be comfortable with what ever I'm doing.

CF: What are your favorite items and fashions of the season?

SS: I like the a nice summer dress, because they are flirty and easy to throw on. Right now for spring, I am really into the button-up polo and on warmer days, just a nice pastel-color short. I was going to wear my boots today, but I happened to stick with my sandals, so you can say another style I admire is the Western style.

CF: Is there a favorite item or accessory that you can't live without?

SS: I always have a watch on. When I wear silver jewelry I have a leather watch, and when I wear gold, I usually always wear my gold Michael Kors watch. And I always need my Pandora bracelet. Regarding my earings, I always have my pearls on or my Tiffany's knots on, which I'm wearing right now!

CF: Has your style changed over the course of your college years at all, and if so how?

SS: I'm from Boston, so I began college a little bit more layered than I am now, such as a plaid vest with jeans or boots. I gradually moved from my Uggs to my favorite pair of Frye boots that I don't take off in the Winter. With beauty, I now keep my hair more natural, as opposed to always spending the time straightening it all the time as I did as a Freshman.

How To: To achieve this effortless preppy spring look, a clean white polo (you can always cuff up long sleeves) is key. To add contrast to the white, a colored bottom will bring the preppy look all together (cargo will help you achieve a closer preppy appearance than jean). Finish the look off with a supportive sandal, or on cooler days, a closed-toe loafer will do! Throw on your “Wayfarer-style” shades and you're ready to go. This finished look keeps you looking clean and put together while also adding a bit of colorful personality to the final product! These tips will help you to bring our your own inner-prep!


If you couldn't tell from my last posts, I have a huge admiration for color. A pop of color always naturally attracts the eye and allows for complete personal expression no matter the type of style. But, on this particular day, it was texture and material that had me completely captivated. A cool morning swept over the campus, causing most students to ditch their brights and neons for layers and warmth making this style-finding task a bit more challenging to begin with. However, it didn't take long before a netted-like pull-over and some suede fringe boots had my full attention. 

Name: Kara Schab

Major: Media Arts and Design

Year: Junior

CollegeFashionista: What are you wearing? 

Kara Schab: Today I am wearing Minnetoka fringe boots, Citizens of Humanity skinny jeans, a textured sweater from Forever 21 and of course, my Dogeared Karma necklace to help me remember to always stay balanced.

CF: What do you think about/consider when getting ready for the morning?

KS: In the morning I dress myself with the mindset to have a motivated and productive day. The days I wear yoga pants and a sweatshirt I tend to end up getting nothing done besides working on improving my sleeping skills. With an outfit that is comfortable yet unique and inspiring, I give myself confidence to make the most of my day. Plus you never know who you may run into!

CF: What does style mean to you?

KS: Style to me, is our way of portraying the things we cannot say or explain in any other way than literally “wearing our hearts on our sleeves.” It is a vice for expressing our individuality, uniqueness, values, beliefs and lamely sounding, how we actually feel that day through the clothing we wear for others to see. I find it to be a very inspiring aspect of our society.

CF: Who/what inspires you most?

KS: I am lucky to be surrounded by stunning and amazing friends both at home and at school, especially those in my major who are often very creative and diverse in their tastes. I have always looked to my peers for ideas and inspiration in the style world, especially my best friends from high school. Also, my oldest sister Lauren has always given me multi-dimensional perspectives on style since I can remember.

CF: Are you big into accessories? If so, which kinds?

KS: I am a huge fan of rings and bracelets. Bracelets, whether you make them yourself, or buy them, just add an extra something to anything you are wearing, specifically wrap bracelets. Wrap bracelets are essentially timeless.  Also, I love one-of-a-kind rings, especially ones that remind me of my experience at the place where I got the ring from, or ones that remind me of the people from whom I received the ring!

How To: To get Kara's layed back and textured look, it is necessary to focus in more on texture rather than color and cohesiveness. Choose either the top or the bottom half to “texturize” while down-playing the other half. On top, a cardigan is a great option. Complete with simple accessories (so they don't compete too much with the texture of the outfit) and some fringe. With these tips, you will be on your way to become the texture Fashionista/Fashionisto of your campus!


For me, there are few things that make a warm, sunny day even more enjoyable at any time. Some days a Starbucks Tazo iced tea to indulge in, and a summer-time playlist on repeat can keep me going in between classes. On other days, a light and bright outfit is key for putting that extra pep in my step and motivate me to finish my day strong. This week, I stumbled upon a glowing Fashionista that naturally seemed to embody a similar mind-set when it comes to personal style during these everlasting sunny days.

Name: Natalie Dargham

Major: Interior Design

Year: Freshmen

CollegeFashionista: What three words best describe your personal style?

Natalie Dargham: Mismatched, experimental and vibrant.

CF: What does style and fashion mean to you?

ND: I feel like fashion is art. Your body is essentially the blank canvas that you have the freedom to play with and show your individuality. And like art, every style is unique and catered to the artist preference.

CF: Who or what most inspires your style?

ND: Blake Lively and Nicole Richie inspire my style because Blake is so chic, classy and beautiful while Nicole is more boho and artsy.

CF: What are three things in your wardrobe that you can't live without?

ND: My EARRINGS are the number one thing I could never live without. I base my outfits around them. Headbands would be the second — I just recently got into them! And then belts! They accessorize a simple outfit without even trying! All three add that much more spice to it!

How To: To perfect this bold style as Natalie does, aim for a neon colored blouse or pair of shorts. Contrast, with a more neutral counterpart (so, if the neon piece is a top, jeans or dark shorts on bottom will work, and vice versa). To accessorize the look, a bold or colorful shoe will bring variation to the look overall, completed with a boho bag and some light-weight earrings. With these tips, the bright red iced-tea in your cup won’t be the only color catching glances.


Have you ever had those days when you are unsure of how to appear glam yet stay completely comfortable? Usually, us Fashionistas find ourselves choosing one over the other when it comes to compiling our stellar styles for the day. This week, the spotlight is on a Fashionista who is a pro at perfecting this balance. Spending the day scramming from class to class with little to no break in between requires a couple key wardrobe elements that fit as well as they appear.

Name: Nedg Alsagoff

Major: Media Arts and Design

Year: Senior

CollegeFashionista: What are you wearing?

Nedj Alsagoff: My top is from H&M, pants are from a small boutique in Santa Barbara, the watch is Michael Kors, my glasses are from Forever 21, my sandals are from DSW and by bag is Coach! 

CF: What does style mean to you?

NA: Style is a way for me to express the many different personas I have. I think my sense of style is something that changes everyday when I wake up and look in my closet and get ready for the day. I think to myself, what part of me would I like to express to the world today, whether it be bohemian-chic or sophisticated and classy.

CF: How can you best describe your style for this season?

NA: I'm channeling my favorite decade, which is of course the one I grew up in — the '90s: crop tops, high-waisted shorts/pants, long skirts, platform heels and chunky jewelry. But it's safe to say I'm leaving the popped collar polos and leggings underneath denim skirts behind.

CF: Who/what inspires you most?

NA: For me, Nicole Richie has always influenced my style; she always seems to nail every outfit. I also love looking at old photographs of my mother, her outfits were always amazing and pulled off with grace and a sense of chic.

CF: For you, is style more than what you wear?

NA: In a way, yes. I think style goes beyond the fashion but consists of a supplemented attitude. You've got to own what you wear with confidence, but humbleness. Otherwise, you may come off as arrogant and that to me is major fashion faux pas.

How To: Getting a pair of loose, soft draw-string pants can be just the answer to the unsettling decision between comfort and looking chic. A loose blouse with polka-dots or another colorful blouse is a great way to complement the bottoms as well. A pair of flats or ankle boots are different shoe alternatives to completing this look. With these style tips, you'll have everyone fooled.  


This week’s Fashionisto, is the definition of what I like to call “Euro Hipster:” the look portrayed by sleek jeans, Clarks Desert boots and some oversized-frame specs. With a passion for the arts and expanding realm of music, discover how this personal interest is portrayed through the rags that he rocks as the temperatures are quickly on the rise. 

Name: Logan Leveret

Major: Media Arts and Design

Year: Junior

CollegeFashionista: What does style mean to you and what items makes you most comfortable?

Logan Levert: I find that style can be anything that people make their own. Whether it’s nail polish, hairstyles and clothes. For me, my style is pretty much just simple. I’m not really into text or graphic tees or anything like that. I just really like plain, earthy colors. I call it my “mountain man” wear.

CF: What items are you really feeling right now?

LL:  I love jeans and boots. You can never go wrong.

CF: For just right now or all year round?

LL: I can definitely rock jeans all year round. In the summer I usually tend to stick with my “hipster” shorts and my old-school Vans.

CF: Is there anything specifically in your wardrobe that you now find yourself wearing that you wouldn’t particularly wear during other times of the year?

LL: For a while, I used to hate basketball shorts to work out in, so for some reason I bought all of these obnoxiously-bright colored neon '80s swim trunks that are very short since they're all vintage. So, I wear those as shorts a lot! It’s fun to make a separate image, something that you don’t find many people doing.

CF: Is there a person, store or thing that inspires your sense of style most?

LL: As far as people who inspire me, definitely someone like Sam Beam from the band Iron & Wine, and Will Oldham of Bonnie’ Prince’ Billy. It’s not just what they wear; I get inspired by the expression of who they are and their lifestyles just as much as the way they transcend style through clothes. Music mainly inspires me and the way musicians use their name to push the limits of fashion and start trends this day in age.

How To: Keep it simple with a clean-cut pair of dark narrow jeans and some suede boots. A light blue button-down that Logan is sporting can be worn in any lighter color of preference to achieve a similar ensemble. A darker cardigan is perfect to layer and take off depending on the climate. Grab a pair of black-rimmed hipster shades and take a break from your razor to really complete the perfect example of your own Euro Hipster.


As the temperatures are rising, the vibrant colors are as well. Each day, the darks and earth tones are gradually fading while the pastels and neon take over. This season, the limits seem to be endless when it comes to prints, colors and every combination in between. This week’s Fashionista is a real-life example of this fashionably relentless trend. She proves that color mixtures are with out boundaries and no shade is too bright to rock this season.

Name: Meghan Bean

Major: Public Relations

Year: Senior

CollegeFashionista: What are you wearing?

Meghan Bean: My shirt is Forever 21, shorts are American Eagle, the wedges are Steve Madden and watch is Michael Kors.

CF: What kinds of trends are you currently into these days?

MB: In the winter I rely on my black staple pieces in my closet. However, with spring quickly approaching I am really into a lot of vibrant colors. I love colored denim, bright tops and heels with a pop of color. I am also really into blousy tops, whether they are long sleeve or sleeveless. They are really flirty and summery.

CF: What piece can you absolutely not live with out from your wardrobe?

MB: My go to piece is my gold Michael Kors watch. I wear it almost every single day. It is definitely a statement piece and is the perfect accessory to polish any outfit.

CF: How can you best describe your sense of style?

MB: I am a Washington, DC native and think that the city’s style has influenced my personal style: simple sophistication with a flirty twist.

CF: Who or what influenced your fashion sense most?

MB: I am obsessed with following fashion blogs. I check them daily and am constantly inspired to try new looks and trends. Over the past few years I find myself checking fashion blogs for ideas even more than fashion magazines. I think that these blogs are so influential, mostly because they are written by real people and feature real people. Some of my favorite style icons include Elizabeth Taylor, Jennifer Anniston, the Olson twins and Lauren Conrad.

How to: There are very few limits when it comes to picking color combinations for this spring. In this case, this Fashionista contrasted with a tangerine-shade chiffon blouse and turquoise cargo shorts. What really brought Meghan’s look together were the colorful wedges! So be creative when it comes to colors. You can’t go wrong with a piece such as a scarf or bag that pulls the whole look together. Still can’t move on from your favorite dark shades? Gradually transition by starting with a bright nail color!


Spring break has officially begun and this week I decided to explore the streets of my hometown in Westport, CT. Along with a handful of new restaurants and boutiques (including Urban Outfitters!) making way downtown with the latest trends, I made sure to reacquaint myself with the places and shops I’ve always loved. One of my first stop-ins was to my favorite hometown store: LF. While submerging myself in their new sweaters and fringe, a stylish Fashionista stuck out with her red and black flannel, army green vest and ankle-high moccasins. This natural native-mountain inspired ensemble represented everything my hometown feels like, but incorporated an edgy and stylish twist.

Name: Allison Baughman

Major: Literature

Year: Just Graduated from Ave Maria University in Naples, FL

CollegeFashionista: What is style to you?

Allison Baughman: Expressing yourself! But always be comfortable…never try too hard.

CF: If you were to give any advice to a college student concerning personal style what would it be?

AB: Go some place that makes you feel the best. For me, I go to concerts. Whenever I feel the vibe, I wear what I feel comfortable in to match the atmosphere.

CF: What are your favorite pieces right now?

AB: Moccasins and rain boots are a must. My leather jacket goes well with everything, and my riding leggings that are half leather half cotton from LF!

CF: Now being out in the real world, does your work influence your style?

AB: Well I write for two music blogs as well as working at LF. My style is extremely music-influenced because it’s what I love (almost as much as I love The Strokes, they will always be my favorite band). I began working here at LF after I graduated this past December, and found that the clothes here represent the style I love.

How To: To get this woodlands style, an old T-shirt and neutral cardigan are key for layering beneath a flannel. A red or green flannel should fit comfortably but not too tight (leave room for layers depending on how cold it is). A more form-fitting vest will turn up the army-feel of this outfit while a pair of skinny jeans and some moccasins will give you that tribal feel to finish it off. Accessorize with some leather and turquoise, and your look is complete!