Nice threads that won’t break the bank

Aaron Martinez

At any given time the typical college student is tired, broke, or hungry. But mostly it’s a combination of the three. This is most likely the biggest contributing factor to college campuses being your first stop if you were on the hunt for some badly dressed men. It’s tough sometimes being a college student, I get it, but you know, we don’t have to look tired or broke. I’m here to help you get a wardrobe together that has all the comfort of your sweat pants and sandals but without looking like a total slob.

We’ll start off with some basics like shirts, outerwear, shoes, you know, the essentials. First off, when it comes to shopping around, especially on a small budget we’re looking to build a wardrobe. So don’t buy a single outfit. I suggest starting with a list of items you need and knowing what would go great together. If there is a particular item you like but doesn’t mesh well with the rest, it can wait. Go for articles of clothing that fall into complimentative color schemes, such as greys and blues as well as other darker colors so it’d be easier to coordinate an outfit as you drag yourself out of bed for that early morning lecture.

When it comes to shirts, it’s all too easy to reach for those “2 for $10” graphic tees that make you look like a child. But we’re going for some refinement here, so let’s climb out of your adolescent closet and into some adult clothes. A great place to start would be Polos. I prefer Ben Shermans or Fred Perrys but anything with a collar that frames your face is a definite plus. Also long sleeve buttons downs have casual short sleeved ones as well. All of these are inexpensive and great looking. You can find cheap button downs at H&M, Cotton on, and even a bit higher end place like J. Crew.

While they’re having their end of season sales, they also offer a student discount, but again, we’re looking for something priced mid ranged with durability. Ease of access is important as well however, being busy doesn’t allow you the freedom to drive to a shopping center. But have no fear; every major retailer has an online store which usually offer discount codes and free shipping, which means more clothes in your closet, and more money in your pocket for real food. The life of a college student isn’t a particularly hygienic or feeble one, so neither should your clothes. I go for the thicker merino sweaters and the denim you know can take a beating. Look for darker, raw washes rather than the distressed look. Don’t limit yourself to denim either; add a pair of corduroys or chinos to your bottoms collection.

Levis and KR3W provide all of these relatively cheap. Also just side notes, the slim fit look are what’s in right now, but realize the difference between slim fit and skin tight. Avoid the extremely tight and the super loose and baggy, know your size and get the right fit. Now you have some tops and bottoms, but what are you supposed to walk on? Sneakers are great for comfortability sure, but they’re plenty of shoes in the world of fashion that offer style and comfort. Boat shoes, Desert boots, and Derby shoes and Wing Tips are all a staple in a great outfit. I find that Clarks and DSW shoes offer all these for an affordably reasonable price.

Maybe you have a night class or you find the mornings to be cold enough for a jacket, this too has a solution. Like I mentioned before, J. Crew has a great collection of outerwear but for some timeless classics you can pull out of your closet a few years from now, Pea coats and Knits or Tweeds are a must have for any season. Some final tips before you go off and build your own budget wardrobe, shop slow. I know, as well as, anyone that once the next “in” thing comes around I want in.

So don’t drop all your dough on something you won’t want to be wearing next season. Again, make a list of things you need when going out for your clothes and try not to deviate from that plan. You’ll end up with lots of impulse buys and empty pockets. Biggest tip set a reasonable budget! Remember, you’re looking for mid-range items with durability and flexibility when it comes to coordination. Happy deal hunting.

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