As students all over Boston continue to push through the first few weeks of classes, it’s understandable that your outfit may be the last thing on your mind. Let’s face it — having a simple way to dress up your day outfit is crucial, especially when you’re running late to your 8AM!

That’s why I’m in love with the classy casual trend. While pearl necklaces were originally perceived as a formal accessory, over the years, fashion inevitably revolutionized this classic for daily use. Just another reason why I love fashion — you can always bend the rules. To add a bit of class to your wardrobe this semester, consider investing in a pearl necklace. Pearl necklaces are no longer strictly for Audrey Hepburn and royalty. Adding a pearl necklace to your day outfit creates a dressed-up illusion and, when worn right, you can avoid looking like you just woke up and threw on the first thing you saw — even if you did.

Today’s Fashionista juxtaposes her pearl necklace with a Levi’s rip-off jean vest — the perfect definition of classy casual. While her necklace adds the perfect touch of class, her layered chiffon skirt and white T-shirt keep the outfit comfortable and cute. Not to mention, red is the perfect color to wear when transitioning from summer to fall and looks great with anything denim!

The trick to pulling off the classy casual look is to make sure your outfit evenly juxtaposes both elements. There has to be a balance so your outfit doesn’t become too classy or too casual; today's Fashionista pulls the look off perfectly. I also can't get enough of her jean vest — I truly believe jean vests, long sleeve shirts and pants are meant to be paired with pearls.

A single strand of pearls is perfect to pair with any outfit. For a looser fitting top, wear a layered pearl necklace or, if you want to try something different, a pearl collar. For an inexpensive pearl necklace, check out Forever 21 or, even better, your mother’s jewelry chest. Not only will it feel genuine and have a great back-story (for when Fashionista/os compliment you, obviously), but there's also nothing like a family heirloom to authenticate your look.

Whether we're ready or not, it's time to embrace the school year. So get out your pencils and pearls and hit the books — it's time to show Boston how being a Fashionista is a true class act!


As Fashionista/os everywhere are beginning to pull out their jeans and scarves to prepare for the fall, it’s hard not to notice the intermeshed seasonal styles. Today's Fashionista pulls off the changing of seasons perfectly. Wearing a cotton peacoat, cropped-turtleneck and suede boat shoes, she’s ready to bring in the fall without straying too far from summer by also rocking a pair of turquoise jean shorts. The studs emit an edgy look and, with a simplistic black top and tights, the bright color fails to be overwhelming.

I have always been a huge fan of high-waisted shorts. High-waisted shorts have been around since the 1940s and, without a doubt, have made a huge comeback onto the fashion scene. They're the perfect way to bring in the fall by showing a bit of summer color, but easy enough to pair with tights to stay warm. I bought my favorite pair of high-waisted jean shorts at a vintage pop-up shop in London. For something closer to home with a British flair, check out ASOS’s shorts collection. New York-style? I'm in love with these vintage cut-offs from Denim & Supply by Ralph Lauren. If you’re not too sure what your shorts style is yet, I recommend looking into Urban Outfitters' great collection, which includes a pair similar to today's Fashionista that you can check out here.

When wearing high-waisted shorts, make sure you are wearing a pair that suits your body type. The most flattering way to wear them is buying a pair that fits snuggly, but baggy shorts can also exude a more casual feel. Wearing a cropped top or tucking in a longer shirt is essential to pull off this look. Finishing it off with a skinny belt and a pair of Converse or low boots (combat boots anyone?!) is the best way to accessorize for the fall.

If you’re looking to bring in the fall with a bit of flair like today's Fashionista, check out this great find on Etsy. Add a neutral color pair of tights, a simple cropped top and a cute shoulder bag, and you’re ready to bring in the fall.

Style Guru Bio: Nicole Merritt

Strawberry lemonade, unexpected rain showers, Rebecca Minkoff and cheetah duct tape.

These are a few of my favorite things — as well as my experience as a Style Guru for NYU this past summer. This fall, I'll be trading the skyscrapers of New York for the brownstones of Boston, but not before snapping one last touristy photo!

Not only am I excited to spend time with friends, take strolls down Newbury Street and live two minutes away from UBurger this semester, but Commonwealth Avenue is where my camera belongs. If you've read any of my articles, you probably already know that the fall is undeniably my favorite season. And what better place than Boston to bundle up in a cute sweater, infinity scarf and knit hat? Oh, the possibilities…

I'll never forget the day my mother told me that I could buy whatever clothes I wanted, as long as it was with my own money. While some may have groaned and complained, I quickly identified this as my first newfound freedom as a teenager: the freedom to shop.

When I couldn't afford the clothes I wanted, I, in the words of Tim Gunn, “made it work.” I began to experiment with patterns, colors and styles — this worked, that didn't. Or did it? Who was to say it wasn't “fashion-forward”? I soon realized fashion wasn't about replicating the outfits in Teen People or Seventeen — it was about showcasing your unique personality. Soon, clothes became more than a daily neccessity; they were a tool to discover who I was as a person (or Fashionista)!

I've learned valuable lessons by creating my own style: be your own person, don't take “no” for an answer, you never know until you try, spend wisely and trust your gut. There's a lot we can learn from our wardrobes if we take a second look!

If there's one thing I'll leave you with this semester, it's that fashion is perception. There’s no better time to create the person you want to be than in college.

Boston, it's time to take the runway.


If there's one thing I love more than shoes, it's purses. But the question remains: what kind of purse? With all of the different sizes, shapes and styles out there, it's easy for any Fashionista to be overwhelmed.

Would you wear one pair of shoes the rest of your life? Or a pair of running shoes with a dress to a club? Probably not (even though it's harder to find trends these days that don't work). Same goes for purses — a Fashionista needs an appropriate purse for every outfit. That's why, after four years of school, don't be too surprised when you see just as many purses as shoes in your closet.

Today's Fashionista rocks the perfect bag for school. Gone are the days Fashionistas/os carry books to class. Her medium-sized bag not only makes a statement, but also gives this back-to-school must-have a little personality. A medium-sized bag is perfect for carrying your day-to-day essentials and doesn't get in the way when you're stuck on a crowded subway (ugh). With the contrasting yellow and magenta colors, it's also the perfect way to color block an outfit.

Try going for a bold colored purse this fall for your day-to-day bag. Not only will it brighten up any classroom, but who knows whose eye you'll catch? Plus, we all need a bit of summer to hold onto as we get into the colder months.

Thank you to everyone who read my posts summer — I've had an amazing first semester with the CollegeFashionista family! Don't forget to follow my posts as I start writing for Boston University in the fall, and have a fabulous rest of the summer!


As summer comes to a close, Fashionistas everywhere are starting to realize: maybe buying another pair of wedges isn't the BEST investment (no objection on my part, though). Your shorts, skirts and …well, actually, what else? Is there really anything we can't pair with a cute blazer or cardigan to make it fall-forward?

That's the beauty of the fall — while you're starting to pick warmer bottoms, there's always room to layer that cute summer or spring top! Even skirts can be paired with a pair of stockings or tights. So maybe this fall you don't have to break your budget too much…

But let's get back to those bottoms. Today's Fashionista (and one of the last ones of summer!) is rocking an awesome pair of tribal harem pants — perfect to pair with any solid colored top. Tribal prints show off your personality, and with her hair pulled back, this Fashionista isn't hiding anything. The loose fit and light feel of harem pants are perfect for transitioning from summer to fall keeping her comfy and casual, but staying warm on cooler days.

Check out some harem pants here and here. For designs like today's Fashionistas, you can't miss out on these. For a bolder look, check out a harem jumpsuit.

The trick to pulling off harem pants is to pair them with a cropped or fitted top. Wearing a baggy top not only takes away from the pants, but you'll find yourself swimming in your clothes! Lets be real — these pants are all about showing off your fashion sense, and all those summer ab workouts! Wedges, heels and low-cut strappy sandals are great to pair with these pants as well. Biggest plus? They're  perfect for any occasion — a night out, class or a day of shopping.

While this is almost my last post of the summer, I'm not going too far — just back up north! Check out my posts this fall as I start writing for Boston University.

I hope everyone has an amazing rest of their summers!

STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK: Back to Schoolwear

It's the time of year we've all been dreading (or in some cases, eagerly anticipating): move in day. Whether you're a freshman beginning to start your first (and arguably best) year of college, or getting ready to celebrate your last year as a senior, there's one thing that's on all Fashionistas/os' minds: back-to-school shopping!

When we were younger, back-to-school shopping was all about filling your pencil case with colored pens and animal shaped erasers. Now, it's about filling your closet. They say in college, less is more. Obviously whoever said that wasn't aware of under-the-bed storage containers (thanks, Target).

The summer heat is bound to carry over in the first few weeks of the school year here in New York — perfect for those who can't wait to show off their favorite summer outfits. But for the rest of us who are ready to pull out our jeans and boots, the heat can be a drag.

Spotted lounging in Union Square, today's Fashionista's short sleeve eyelet sweater is the perfect way to transition from summer to fall during the first few warm weeks of the semester. Besides, nothing says back-to-school like a pair of Converse and a new backpack! Not to mention her bracelets — layering handmade bracelets gives any outfit a personalized and easy-going look, perfect for a throw-on-and-go outfit.

When wearing an eyelet sweater, be attentive with what you wear underneath. Go natural with a nude bra or bandeau, or a colored top like this Fashionista. What you wear underneath should depend on how comfortable you feel — everyone's different! No matter the undergarment, the length of your bottom should balance out your top. By wearing an uneven cut sweater with a skater skirt, this Fashionista finds the perfect balance and avoids the “Is this a sweater or a dress?” debate. If you're looking for a longer length with a more even cut, try an eyelet dress or skirt.

It’s important to be yourself at school, and that starts with your wardrobe! Shop on as you enjoy the last month of summer.


“Tell me about it, stud.”

The moment these famous words left Sandy's mouth in the movie Grease, the once innocent school girl's transformation was complete. Viewers mouths dropped (and in some cases, drooled). Gone were her pastel sweaters and pom-poms; Sandy was nothing short of a total babe with her skin-tight leather pants and voluminous hair.

Today, more and more Sandys are popping up everywhere thanks to one clothing accessory: studs. Studs are the perfect way to create your own “Sandy” look without looking too much like Catwoman (unless you're Anne Hathaway).

Today's Fashionista wears studs perfectly. Her unique toe-covered studded sandals and leather bag give just the right amount of edge to her comfortable, yet chic outfit (click here to read more about the chiffon skirt!). By keeping her outfit's color palette neutral, the studs  are about to stand out. With her gold studded bracelets, you're sure not going to miss this Fashionista when you walk by!

From the runway to the girl you sit next to in Economics, studs are everywhere. The trick to pulling off studs is not going over the top — subtle additions to your outfit will make more of an effect and will be less overwhelming. I personally love faded gold metallic studs to get a worn-down look. For accessories, go for a cute studded fanny pack, clutch or headband to switch it up. For clothes, I'm a huge fan of studded collars, especially on jean tops, and I recently fell in love with this dress — perfect for any fall formal or night out. If you're looking to stand out a bit more in the crowd with this trend, try switching it up by pairing neons with studs.

I mean, who wouldn't want to be surrounded by plenty of studs?

“You're the one that I want, one that I want, oooh oooh oooh …” (talking about these shoes, of course).


Growing up I was a tomboy — and in some ways, I still am. Sure, everyone had their Limited Too phase; but when it came down to it, I hated dresses and preferred exploring the woods rather than having tea parties. Even today, I see the tomboy look everywhere. Boyfriend shorts, blazers and even Jack Willis underwear (not to mention the garconne look) have undoubtedly redefined womenswear. And when I think about it, the tomboy has generally been an American-bred trend — who could forget Scout from To Kill a Mockingbird? With Fourth of July a few weeks ago, and patriotic cocktails and shirts continuing to dominate Pinterest boards, it’s only fitting that this Fashionista caught my eye.

Today’s Fashionista’s Tommy Hilfiger palette shows off both her American pride and the powerful message of a simple outfit. Her denim jeans and white T-shirt keep it classic and casual, with her Converse sneakers adding on that essential splash of red. Not to mention she’s wearing America’s favorite classic shoe!

What really gives this outfit a boyish edge is her awesome suspenders. Paired with a mid-drift shirt, today's Fashionista doesn’t forget her feminine side by showing a little skin without going over the top. American Apparel (figures) has a great line of suspenders, as well as Karma Loop.

So whether you’re throwing on a pair of suspenders with your Levi shorts, rocking the “school girl” look or redefining business casual with a “suit,” a small accessory can go a long way in refining the borders between men and womenswear. While we often identify ourselves with the style culture of our home state, there will always be fashion trends to remind us we’re all “made in America.”

Some trends never go out of style.


Let's face it, there are always a few Fashionistas that can't help but stick out in the crowd. The ones who plan out their outfit the night before, walk their entire commute in heels and don't mind being late because they couldn’t decide on the perfect accessory. To some, they are otherwise known as the cream of the crop.

Now, this doesn't mean you need to go all-out with every outfit you wear. While style is universal, it can also be very subjective. Every Fashionista/o has their own style, and whether or not it’s eye-catching probably depends on your mood (everyone has their days they hide in jeans and a T-shirt). But we can't help but be impressed when a Fashionista can strut through New York on a humid day and pull off these shoes!

First off, they look like they came straight from Lady Gaga's closet (call it stereotypical, but honestly kudos to Gaga for branding herself so well that platform shoes remind people of her). And with Gaga recently making headlines reaching new heights, these curved wooden heels stay loyal to the Queen Monster herself. Made of suede, these heeled booties not only give our Fashionista some extra height, but turn her outfit completely badass. Given the soft tones of her off-white ensemble (which perfectly complement her hair and complexion), these platform heels are a perfect addition to spice up any easy-going outfit. For a pair similar to this Fashionista's, try Jeffrey Campbell, Betsey Johnson and BE & D.

While booties are typically a fall trend (we all know how I feel about crossing seasons), with all the different ways neons are making their way back into footwear, these shoes are showing up in numerous summer collections. Paired with a sundress, these shoes can easily tone down any preppy look.

The shape of the heel, as well as the curved toe, reminded me of the controversial runway hoof heel. Now, when this shoe first came out I thought nothing short of “what would Seabiscuit think of this?” While the fur is still too much for me, I quickly got over the basic idea behind the shoe. I realized that with some shoes, it's not always about the design itself; it's about the statement it makes and how it inspires designers to create new shoes — in this case, the elegant curve on these booties. I wonder what Nancy Sinatra thinks?

So be a Carrie, or an Imelda, or a Jonathan Walford. Embrace your footwear — no matter what your outfit, your shoes speaks for themselves!


Every Fashionista/o should be adventurous — an adventurous shopper that is. From zebra nail designs to cheetah Sperry Top-Siders, there's no doubt that animal prints are making their way into our day-to-day wardrobe. Forget the days you associated animal prints strictly with safaris and Snooki. This summer, dare to stand out.

The key to animal prints goes back to the textbook rule of thumb: “less is more.” By adding a simple, classy twist to any animal print look, you avoid looking cheap or overdone. This Fashionista wears cheetah print perfectly. With a carefully selected pair of print jeans and high cut purple chiffon top, the outfit is simple yet bold. By mixing prints with her polka dot T-shirt under her chiffon top, she keeps her outfit interesting. But notice the polka dots are small and subtle so the focus remains on her jeans. Her suede dress shoes with matching purple shoelaces are my favorite part of the outfit — I love matching subtleties! If you're looking for something less bold than this Fashionista, try pairing an animal print top with a tailored, colored bottom and a pair of heels. For a more casual look, pair the shirt with a pair of jeans with studded or embellished flats.

For large articles of clothing (dresses, skirts, jeans, etc), choose small or medium sized designs to prevent your outfit from looking disproportional. For accessories and clothes with a smaller surface area (I love animal print headbands and wedges!), try larger sized prints to make them stand out. Like they say, half the fun is getting there.

If you decide to invest in animal prints this summer, shop around. Don't settle — if you nail an outfit like this, it will be unforgettable.