Class of 2013: Sara

It is unbelievable to me that four years have already come and gone. I still remember what I wore my first day of classes at Tulane: a white bohemian tank top, light wash denim cut-offs and gold studded brown gladiator sandals. I can still say I have all three of these items in my closet. However, I can’t say I am still the same girl who wore that outfit. Each year has brought about change, uncertainty, awareness and excitement. From spending freshman year adjusting and embracing college lifestyle, feeling at ease in a familiar place sophomore year, studying abroad first semester junior year and coming back second semester with an anticipated sense of seniority and finally culminating with a memorable senior year. I could not imagine spending my formative college years any place other then Tulane University.

Even though it has only been one year since I started writing for CollegeFashionista, it has been amazing to see how much this site has grown in such a short amount of time, and I am grateful to have been a part of it. Not only has being a Style Guru fine tuned my writing skills and sharpened my eye for fashion, it has also evolved my personal style. I have a greater understanding of what does and doesn’t work for me and how to put an outfit together. I have also developed a new found appreciation for street style. It has been so inspiring to see that college students just like me can have an influence in the fashion world.

After graduation, I plan to go back home to New York; there is nowhere else I would rather be. I am excited to see what the future holds, but right now I need to focus on finding a dress for graduation (although by the time this post goes live, after my graduation, I better have found something).


Ripped jeans are typically associated with the grunge style of the 1990’s. The idea behind grunge is to look unkempt so as to give off the appearance of not caring about how you dress. Since this period in fashion, ripped jeans have evolved into a more mainstream trend. All cuts of denim–from bell-bottom to straight leg–are available in distressed designs. Today, it is not uncommon to see ripped jeans incorporated into a polished look. That being said, not all types of ripped jeans are appropriate in a formal setting. Your best bet for dressed up distressed denim is to find a pair of skinny jeans in a dark or black wash with subtle and minimal rips.

This week’s Fashionista demonstrates a happy medium of dressing up ripped jeans between a grunge and formal look. Her approach incorporates distressed denim into a casual and put together daytime ensemble. She pairs her ripped boyfriend jeans with awhite tank top under a cute fitted cardigan. She adds some eye-catching finishing touches with colorful sunglasses and bright neon sandals. If you are looking for a pair of boyfriend jeans similar to this week’s Fashionista, ASOS makes a great version with a low rise and relaxed fit. For an everyday outfit, opt for skinny jeans in either a dark or light wash. Skinny jeans in a black wash are perfect for a night time look. Since summer is just around the corner, try this trend with a pair of distressed denim shorts. Your legs will thank you for the extra breeze. If you are really willing to take a risk, try cutting and/or ripping a pair of jeans yourself for an authentic distressed look.


Here in New Orleans, festival season officially kicked off with local events such as French Quarter Fest and Strawberry Fest, with the highly anticipated Jazz Fest just a few days away. Beyond NOLA, major festivals have either recently passed (Ultra, SXSW) or are just around the corner (Bonnaroo, EDC). Wherever you are, it is inevitable that warm weather will bring some type of festival to your school or town you live in. Something about the sun and large open fields filled with people, food and good music makes perfect sense. Aside from these perks, festivals have also become a sartorial showcase for Fashionista’s and Fashionisto’s alike. Each event has its own unofficial dress code based on the type of entertainment it offers. For example, Coachella is known for hippie and bohemian inspired fashion to go along with the mostly indie/rock music line-up. No matter what festival you are going to, it is important to dress first and foremost for comfort. You tend to be outside at these things for long periods of time with uncertain weather conditions, so it is always best to be prepared for the worst in terms of what to wear.

This week’s Fashionista looked ready to bask in the sun at any type of festival in her ensemble. Her tie-dye tank top tucked into high-waisted denim shorts is a classic look that can’t go wrong. Her choice of boots is smart, as you tend to be walking through muddy ground at these events. As opposed to sandals, boots keep your feet clean and, when paired with shorts, give your outfit an extra edge. She is also carrying a drawstring crochet backpack that is just big enough to fit necessary essentials. Carrying a light backpack is your best bet at a festival as it is more comfortable than having something hanging off one of your shoulders all day. Finally, her round sunglasses complete her outfit as the finishing touch of this festival frock. To get a look similar to this Fashionista’s, start out with a bold tie-dye tank top and high-waisted denim shorts with exposed button closure. Next, add tan suede lace-up boots, black round sunglasses and a drawstring crochet backpack, and you are ready to make your debut into the stylish world of festival dressing.


During the early weeks of spring, the first signs of warm weather seem to get everyone excited. People are eager to lose their sweaters and boots and immediately replace their winter wear with shorts and tank tops. A symptom of this quick wardrobe transition (of which I am guilty of myself) is that most people, especially college students, tend to stick to a uniform of shorts and tank tops since they are easy to throw. One way to avoid falling into this trap is to opt for a less conventional bottom, such as the maxi skirt. While the length of this skirt might make you believe that it is equivalent to wearing pants, in reality, maxi skirts are much more comfortable and lightweight.

This week’s Fashionista demonstrates the perfect way to wear a maxi skirt this spring. She pairs her statement making skirt with a pale blue scalloped tank top, neutral wedge sandals and a brown fringe purse. The airy quality and bright and colorful flowers popping out against the white canvas of this pleated skirt has springtime written all over it. For a vibrant skirt similar to this Fashionista’s, check out this chiffon maxi with watercolor florals. For a more basic design, try this vibrant royal blue maxi skirt that is strikingly minimalistic. Another reason the maxi skirt is great to try this spring is because it can easily take you from a day to night look. This full swing maxi can be worn in the daytime with a crop top or dressed up at night. For a real show stopping evening look, you can’t go wrong with this black sequin maxi. Spring is the perfect season to experiment with all articles of clothing before the sweltering summer months kick in, so why not try a maxi skirt? An added bonus, a maxi skirt always makes it seem like you put just a little more effort into your outfit as it is a guaranteed polished look.


Floral print is usually synonymous a girly and feminine style in the fashion world. This lush and colorful pattern is also the perfect indicator of the rapidly approaching spring and summer months. However, not everyone deems their style as girly, and rarely does one limit his or her sartorial choices to just one aesthetic. The beauty of fashion is in experimenting with trends and pairing together the unexpected. Eventually this leads to your style evolving overtime and discovering what items work best for you. Following trends is one way to dress. An alternative is to find and combine pieces you love to create your own personal style.

This week’s Fashionitsa exemplifies successful mixing of styles to create her own unique look. Her babydoll chiffon dress with a pastel floral print might seem girly at first, but the rest of her outfit proves otherwise. From her round as a baseball sunglasses, to her burgundy Chelsea boots with black socks sticking out on top, this Fashionista seamlessly integrates edgy aspects into her look. To master the multiple-styles-one-outfit look, make sure to concentrate your outfit around a central piece, as this Fashionista demonstrates. Her dress is the main focal point but when you see the rest of her outfit, you don’t necessarily deem her style as girly. She has just enough edgy pieces that don’t overwhelm, but rather balance out, the feminine dress. To find a look similar to this Fashionista’s, start off with a short-sleeve floral print dress. Next add black ankle socks that peek out over a pair of burgundy Chelsea boots. Finally, add the cool finishing touch of these statement making round sunglasses. You don’t have to just dress preppy, or bohemian or sporty. In fact, have a style identity crisis. It will make your outfits and the actual process of getting dressed way more fun and stimulating.


As a pop culture addict, I always enjoy and appreciate a good, whether it is in a television show, in a magazine or in casual everyday conversation among friends. To some people, knowing what is going on in the lives of celebrities or obsessing about a new movie seems unimportant. However, pop culture is more than just what is currently considered cool in the world of media. Certain aspects of pop culture influence other parts of our lives in unexpected ways, such as how we dress. For example, the 1995 film Clueless introduced the world to Cher Horowitz, a bubbly, pretty and blonde Beverly Hills high school student with a killer wardrobe (not to mention an enviable closet fit with a computer system to help generate outfits). When reflecting back on the film today, one of the most important outcomes is the emergence of Cher as a fashion icon with a legacy that continues to reign. Cher’s pop culture presence has lasted for almost twenty years, and her sartorial choices still resonate with viewers who were fans of the movie when it first came out as well as those who saw it years later.

This weeks Fashionisto was spotted wearing a part of pop culture. His graphic print tank top features a scene from a popular 1980’s film Stand By Me. He paired his tank top with brown lace up boots, a pair of jeans that are self-ripped and a bright red baseball cap on which the Fashionisto monogrammed his initials. His daytime ensemble is the perfect balance of casual and cool for a day of class or for weekend activities.

What I liked so much about this printed tank top is that he specifically chose his top based on his fondness for this film. His personal preference is out in the open for everyone one to see. Usually, all good ouftits are reflective of a person’s personal taste. However, this tank top tells us something more substantial about the wearer than simply what color or design they like. It gives us some insight into something that is important to this Fashionisto, which we would not know otherwise.

To incorporate a part of popular culture into your outfit like this Fashionisto, look for a top with a graphic print you like. If you are a fan of 90’s TV, check out this bold print T-shirt worn by the likes of Justin Bieber. Or to show off your humorous side, you can opt to make a statement with this witty printed top. Fear not, Fashionistas–you can also find items with pop culture references. This music inspired top by Shopbop is perfect for the rock & roll fan. Or try this relaxed T-shirt with a graphic print of a famous TV character. It doesn’t matter if your pop culture reference seems outdated, you can always be the one who brings it back in style.


One of the most essential pieces every Fashionista should have in her closet is an everyday bag. You have this one item hanging from your arms and shoulders all day, whether you are trekking around campus during the week or partaking in fun weekend adventures. If you are like me, your whole life (and double of everything) is in your everyday bag. It should be of the highest quality and practicality to endure your daily routine.

This week I spotted a pair of Fashionistas in casual weekend attire, but what really caught my eye was each of their bags. While one is perfectly slouchy and chic and the other sleek and structured, both totes have all the necessary elements of a quintessential everyday bag. When investing in an item that is such an integral part of your wardrobe, the most important consideration is whether or not this piece reflects your personal style as it should. Next, specifically for an everyday bag, two factors to keep in mind are size and color. First, make sure your bag is not too big, but still has enough room to carry around what you need throughout the day. Second, depending on how you choose to wear your bag, you can either go the route of a basic black, brown or dark gray and green, which complements just about any type of outfit you choose to wear. Or, you can opt for a bright colored bag that is sure to be eye-catching no matter what you are wearing. If you are looking for an edgy and slouchy bag like the one one of these Fashionistas is carrying, check out this snakeskin satchel by Liebeskind. For a slightly smaller size option, go for this black ASOS tote. If you want something with more color, opt for this studded Deux Lux bag in coral. For a more classic and structured tote like the other bag pictured above, you can’t go wrong with this mini shopper by Zara. Or for a statement-making piece, this muted metallic tote bag will do the trick. Since this bag is like an added limb, it’s important to find one you love and have trouble parting with.

STYLE ADVICE OF THE WEEK: Layers on Layers on Layers

When you are running around campus all day chances are you are going to be in and out of hot and cold climates. It might be winter weather outside, but next thing you know you are in a classroom or at the library and it feels like a sauna. The trick to managing your outfit to body heat ratio is layers. Start with a thin garment, such as a T-shirt and leggings, and continue piling on pieces increasing in thickness. That way when you are feeling the heat you can remove the heavier items and when the cold kicks in you can throw on what you need until you are a comfortable temperature. You can even make layering into a fun little game. Play around with pieces; combine the unexpected to complete the puzzle of your outfit. You would be surprised, the crazier the combination the better end result.

This weeks Fashionista was spotted in her layers during the close to freezing days we had last weekend (a rare and therefore noteworthy event in NOLA). Her outfit has many elements to it. First, she wears a fitted black sweater dress over red opaque tights. Next she had on a heavier coat, and finally finishes off her layers with a printed blue scarf and my favorite layer, the wool socks sticking out just enough from under her lace-up booties. To emulate this look, begin with a simple black sweater dress over solid red tights. Next, slip on a sleek black winter coat and warm wool gray socks. Add one pair of heeled brown lace-up booties and for the finishing touch, a lightweight printed blue scarf. One important thing to keep in mind about layering is you don’t want to be wearing too many items.

This Fashionista does layering just right, as nothing is bulky. You almost do not even realize how much she is wearing.


The most commonly used words to describe sweatshirts are causal, comfy and lazy. Did you ever think stylish would be thrown into the mix? Crewneck sweatshirts have recently surfaced as a trendy wardrobe addition. Tons of Fashion Week-goers and street style subjects have been spotted wearing this untraditionally fashionable garment, upping its cool factor from an everyday-item to a chic-piece. Crewneck sweatshirts are the perfect winter alternative to T-shirts. They are great for layering–try one over a collared button down or under a military inspired parka–and are extremely versatile. You can dress them up or down. For a night out, pair a crewneck sweatshirt with a black leather mini skirt or a maxi dress to create a look with an unexpected and refreshing twist.

This week’s Fashionista was spotted in a casual, cool daytime look of a red crewneck sweatshirt, black skinny jeans and perfectly worn blue Converse. Her sweatshirt has a vintage feel that exudes an effortless ease to the rest of her outfit. To achieve this Fashionista’s laidback look, start with a pair of black skinny jeans, an essential staple for your closet. You can’t go wrong with this timeless pair by 7 For All Mankind. Next, pick up a pair of iconic Converse sneakers in bright blue. Finally, throw on this American Apparel crewneck sweatshirt to finish off the outfit. If you’re looking for more of a statement-making piece, opt for this graphic print sweatshirt from Urban Outfitters or this cropped tritone sweatshirt by Cheap Monday. No matter which sweatshirt you choose to buy you’re guaranteed a comfortable and fashionable piece; what more can you ask for?


It’s important to every Fashionista to find the perfect school bag in order to carry around all the essential items we need on a daily basis. While backpacks are the most commonly-seen bag spotted in classrooms, a chic alternative is the satchel. This messenger style bag comes in sizes that are just right to fit your textbooks and laptop and also includes smaller pockets for your pen and cell phone. The adjustable strap allows you to find just the right length for your satchel to hang so that you can comfortably carry the bag all day. A satchel complements any outfit and can be worn outside the classroom, too, as an everyday bag.

This week’s Fashionista was spotted wearing a jean jacket over a tank, with printed silk shorts and a braided black belt; yet, her classic structured satchel is what really caught my eye. It is big enough to use as a school bag but also functions as a part of her stylish ensemble. Unfortunately, I was informed that this satchel was purchased in Paris. However, there are plenty of options to buy a similar version of this Fashionista’s collegiate-chic tote. You can’t go wrong with the standard 15-inch satchel in black by Cambridge Satchel. If you’re looking for a bolder bag, opt for this school bag satchel that comes in a variety of colors, or try this tan satchel with Aztec embroidered panels. Both are sure to make a statement. So if you’re looking to get rid of your bulky backpack, try a classic satchel as your new school tote.