As Northwestern enters the thick of football season, Wildcat fashionistas from the four corners of campus find themselves in a pickle: maintain the image of chic or relinquish high style in the name of purple pride? Can they look fashionable in their Class of 2011 t-shirt?
To those seeking advice on creatively incorporating Northwestern gear into a fashionable wardrobe, your search ends here.
Mix it up. Though throwing on an NU sweatshirt and jeans is easy, no one should feel limited to this mundane uniform. Weinberg and Communications sophomore Brenda Schamy suggested “purple tank tops, dresses or purple t-shirts with different designs.” Basically, wear your colors proud, but be cute, too.
A t-shirt is not just a t-shirt. Pulling your head and arms through the appropriate holes in your NU t-shirt is not the only thing you can do with it. In fact, that is exactly what you should avoid. “I saw some guys at the last football game using Northwestern t-shirts as headbands – it was pretty creative,” said Medill freshman Maren Kasselik.
Daring fashionistas might even try cutting, ripping and tying Northwestern t-shirts into cool new looks: halters, tank tops and one-shouldered Tarzan-tunics – almost worthy of the runway.
Accessorize, accessorize. Even an old NU t-shirt and jeans can get a couture-upgrade with a pair of purple earrings, heels or a headband. “Wear purple make-up and glitter. Dye your hair purple!” said McCormick freshman Sam By.
With hundreds of accessories out there, adding a few purple touches before the big game is an easy way to take your outfit to a classier level. Plus, you’ll never have to agonize about which color scarf to get at H&M or which necklace to choose at Claire’s. Pick purple!
…And don’t forget about the shoes. As if any of us needed an excuse to buy more shoes, Medill freshman Gabby Gonzalez recommended using the DIY Nike ID website, where customers can select colors to customize their sneakers. “You could make them purple and silver,” she said. For the Converse All-Star fanatics, we suggest choosing purple for your twentieth pair.
Boys, don’t be shy! Northwestern manly men must quickly adapt to wearing purple on a regular basis. “Purple is just a cool color, and any guy who can wear purple, props to him,” Kasselik said. It takes a man soundly secure in his sexuality (whichever way that may be) to wear the often stereotyped purple. Barney’s sexuality may have been ambiguous, but men, don’t let that stop you from choosing a purple tie, sweater or polo.
Make it your own. When dressing up in purple, remember that maintaining your personality is the best way to update Northwestern gear.
“I just bought a purple scooter,” McCormick freshman Eric Mencher said. A scooter is just one way to inject your personality into Northwestern gear; imagine your next jaunt down Sheridan Road under a purple umbrella or in a beautiful pair of purple wellies.
Fashion-lovers at Northwestern, there is a way – nay, hundreds of ways – to make NU spirit look as good as Gucci. But no matter what gear you wear, the best and most fool-proof accessory is pride. As Communication freshman Lana Olmer said, “Northwestern gear is fashionable.”