Five fashion staples to get you through winter

*NOTE: This is an article I wrote for MTSU’s campus newspaper, Sidelines. Link here

The snow days on campus are over, and the weather is now in a weird in-between stage. The day may start off at 60 degrees and then slowly plummet to 30 degrees by your last class. This can leave you constantly checking the weather app on your phone every morning and staring at your closet, wondering what to wear to combat this unpredictable weather.

It’s not quite time to pull out your spring wardrobe, so use these five fashion staples to get you through the rest of winter:

1. BUTTON-DOWN SHIRT/SWEATER COMBO

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A button down under a sweater, like this one from junior electronic media communication major Tiffany Kanjabout, can add a girlish and preppy element to your outfit. (MTSU Sidelines / Emily Austin)

A long-time favorite of prep fashion, the button down styled under a sweater has made its way back into recent trends. This combination is chic, yet also practical. The layering helps to protect you from the cold, and if the weather gets warm, you can easily remove the sweater.

2. A GREAT JACKET

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Chaqiao Song, a junior actuarial science major, wears a long jean jacket to fight the chill. (MTSU Sidelines / Emily Austin)

It isn’t cold enough some days to need that heavy peacoat that’s taking up room in your closet. Instead, wear a fashionable jacket that will enhance your outfit rather than hiding it. Clothing favorites from the ’80s and ’90s have began to make their way back into modern fashion, such as the choker, velvet material and high-waisted pants. Jean jackets are no different and give off a retro, laid back vibe to almost any outfit.

3. KNEE SOCKS

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Victoria Ha, a visual communications major in her freshman year, said that her favorite thing about winter is being able to wear knee socks. (MTSU Sidelines / Emily Austin)

Long, cozy socks can allow you to wear your favorite dresses while keeping your legs warm from the cold. Knee socks can either add a sporty element to your outfit or preppy innocence. Whatever your preference, knee socks are a great way to keep your favorite dresses out of storage all year long.

Knee high and over-the-knee boots have also been a favorite trend this season, with many in the fashion community raving about being able to keep their legs covered from the chill while keeping their outfit looking sophisticated and sexy. Can’t afford those thigh-high beauties? Wearing knee-high socks paired with booties can give off the illusion of long boots.

4. WHITE SNEAKERS

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White sneakers, like these worn by Chaqiao Song, are perfect for walking to class and also keep your outfit looking street-style ready. (MTSU Sidelines / Emily Austin)

Fall and winter fashion is all about dark colors and vampy looks. Contrast those dark tones with a pop of white from a good pair of sneakers. White sneakers have been a big trend for some time now, with a lot influence from sporty chic and athleisure fashion. It’s no big surprise that college students are obsessed with this, because comfort is a must. Adding a pair of white sneakers with your favorite black dress can dress down a look, making it perfect for attending class.

4. THE BACKPACK HANDBAG 

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Warren Williams, a sophomore healthcare administration major, wears a knit cardigan paired with a grey shirt and a sophisticated bag. (MTSU Sidelines / Emily Austin)

A backpack handbag can be a wonderful staple piece for your outfit, especially for students. You have a million things to carry with you to class, so you should be carrying it around in something you like, right? Cute, yet edgy, backpack handbags are currently appearing in a lot of street style fashion, but not all of us can afford an Alexander Wang backpack.

Fortunately, many similar style backpacks can be found at places like Target, where the style may not be quite as fabulous, but the price simply can’t be beaten. If you want something more designer, but not quite so expensive, Macy’s has many styles of different backpacks from brands like Michael Kors, Calvin Klein and kate spade new york. The prices for these handbags can be anywhere from $100 to $400.

Winter won’t be around for much longer, and we’ll all be planning our spring break trips. Embrace the rest this season has to offer, and make sure to do it in style.