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Finals week: The one week every semester that students are completely validated in looking like (pardon my French) complete and absolute crap. With exams to cram for and final projects to whip up last-minute, nobody really has time to look good, so why not dress comfy?

Showering? Puh-lease! Forget the fact you’ll look and feel like the troll who lives under Legacy Bridge and that you’re exposing your peers and colleagues to the most foul image of yourself possible — you’ve been through a tough semester and deserve to let your hair down.

No, I can’t do it. Let’s try this again.

Ahem …

Finals week: The one week every semester where my dreams of a well-dressed college campus are crushed into a billion, trillion tiny shards and carelessly dumped on the side of I-15. Once-crisp button-ups are replaced with pizza-stained sweatshirts, while the idea of fitted pants is tossed aside like a spoiled box of Kung Pao chicken. The already meager pool of sharply dressed individuals is scattered, forced to hide from the onslaught of leggings, sweatpants and UGG boots that brutally invade campus and take total control of its students.

But it doesn’t have to be like this! We don’t have to submit to the perils of lazy dressing when the going gets rough. Dressing for comfort and convenience and dressing with style don’t have to be mutually exclusive, and with a morsel of thought the two can be infused into a dazzling product.

Here are some tips to perfecting chic finals fashion without compromising your grades and/or sanity:

· Slim-fit joggers are an incredible substitute for sweats and leggings. The looser fit and elastic waist/hems offer optimal comfort for legs more accustomed to the stiffness of real pants. The dressier details (think nicer material, slit-pockets and functioning fly) elevate them to that level of fashion-girl effortlessness we inevitably covet.

· For the top half, I suggest a solid, baggy men’s tee. Tucked into your slimmer-fit pants and with a roll at the sleeve, a loose T-shirt can look breezy and even elegant, so long as it is worn correctly. Choose shirts with premium cotton fabric, though, and stay away from anything involving print or logos in any form — after all, you’re not a billboard.

· Comfortable and stylish shoes are a lot easier to come by than you might expect. Try reaching for your New Balance sneakers, Birkenstock sandals or well worn-in pair of Vans instead of the nasty fuzzy boots from last decade.

· Keep a neutral color palette complete with browns, navies, creams and whites. That way you won’t have to stress over matching colors during finals week.

Adhering to these simple tips can ensure you slay finals without sacrificing the impeccable fashion sense you’ve procured in young adulthood. Why not try them out? Your classmates will thank you.

a.butler@chronicle.utah.edu

@ChronyArts

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