Back to School Supplies

I love fall and that back to school feeling. NYU started classes this week, which is obvious enough by the sidewalks teeming with bright-eyed young things shouldering their new backpacks and messenger bags (And it's funny, but theses kids all smell so aggressively clean and shower fresh, too!). Amongst the new accessories and first week outfits, you can see plenty of students seizing on the opportunity to reinvent themselves. Freshman year of college affords that opportunity for a clean slate—goodbye Elizabeth the bookworm, hello Zabe (pronounced "Zah-bay") the hipster!

In fashion, nowhere is that back to school feeling more obvious and relevant than at Fashion Week. Most are back from their last summer hurrahs, having madly crammed for the occasion by delving into all the massive September fashion issues (the required reading list), arriving freshly-tanned  and showing off their new supplies: gaze-commanding footwear, the season's coolest bags, and other enviable pieces. Not unlike the start of the academic school year, every September's Fashion Week is a chance for reinvention. But for me, fall dressing isn't so much a time to reinvent as much as it's an occasion to reinforce my standard style with a few updates.

I grew up attending a private school where the mandatory uniform consisted of plaid skirts, khakis, oxford shirts and the like, and though I didn't exactly relish the look at the time, the first hint of crispness in the air always brings me back to those classic collegiate styles. In the past, I used to fight the impulse in favor of the whole "new year, new me" mantra, but personal style is most often pretty inherent. It's in our blood (and mine trends a little blue).

I've also realized, with the exception of Britain's own prep-based aesthetic, this is probably the most all-American aspect of my wardrobe. No doubt, my fall uniform will consist of brown leather, corduroys, cardigans and v-neck sweaters, and tons of plaid—even last season's pajama shirts that I'm not ready to forgo wearing just yet have a certain preppy aesthetic. To these closet staples, I've already begun mentally adding a few choices to update and bolster the overall look. Building on a pair of patent leather loafers in bright saffron yellow, I'll pair them with some equally bright new plaids from J. Crew. To go with the riding helmet I wear on my bike, some over-the-knee equestian-inspired boots from Givenchy are on the "if only" list. More likely, I'll pick up a varsity jacket for a sportier, less literal pairing. And while I still haven't found the perfect leather fall bag, I don't feel like I'll be lost without it. In fact, part of me thinks there's a good chance I already have one.

Is Fashion's Night Out Even Worth It?

Bathing Beauty