We are more than two weeks into the New Year and I couldn’t be more excited to be bringing all you readers the many stylish faces of the Duke community. Especially with sorority recruitment and many other back-to-school events underway, I have been incredibly impressed by the exemplary taste of our students. And, while the temperature is still in the chilly 30s, students are managing to turn the campus sidewalks into their own runways, displaying their own unique takes on cold weather trends.

This Fashionista is one of those students. Her deft layering skills and effective use of color certainly make her one to be noticed. Everything from the vibrant scarf to the gray tights (a nice alternative to the typical black) to every girl’s must-have riding boots demonstrate her discerning eye for style. However, the one piece that completes this already fabulous ensemble is her black leather bag, complete with gold hardware and a second strap for versatile carrying options. Don’t get me wrong, Longchamp totes, which have become a closet staple here at Duke, are incredible, practical and sleek, but this Fashionista really makes a statement with this smart satchel. It really takes her look up notch, while still being perfectly appropriate for the classroom.

That being said, I strongly believe that every college girl should invest in such a piece. Nothing is as timeless as satchel, especially in a neutral color. Whether it be in black, brown, cognac or white, it will surely be an item that can pull together any outfit. Many people put so much focus on their clothes, that while apparel is important, a great bag such as the one above can make the biggest difference.

Almost any retailer will offer this classic, but I highly recommend Nordstrom for a fantastic selection of bags. I’m currently lusting after this Michael Kors 'Skorpios' satchel. The beautiful walnut color and woven drawstrings are perfect for spring. I also love this See by Chloé scalloped leather satchel. The pretty trim edges add a feminine and playful touch without being too trendy. For more budget friendly options, be sure to check out the Cambridge Satchel Company, which offers modern revamps of vintage leather satchels that are perfect for carrying chemistry books around campus. Regardless of your pick, you really can't go wrong with a satchel – a truly sophisticated, yet practical bag for a student on the go.

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