Staying warm in winter with fashionable flair


Scarves are classic accessories that add style and warmth, while multiple layers create a relaxed yet professional look. Photo: Stephanie Greenwood

Recent cooler temperatures have finally forced students to pull out the heavy winter clothes that have been stashed in the backs of closets during the warmer fall months. As bundling up becomes a necessity, students are looking for ways to dress smart in cold weather and still maintain personal style—a task that can sometimes be challenging.

Here are a few tips that can help in the process.

One key to staying warm during the winter cold is layering. Wendi Tripp, a senior apparel, textiles and design major, said layering helps her stay warm on the run. “If you have a choice between one heavy coat and two medium coats, the two medium coats are going to keep you warmer because layering traps air, and air is one of the best insulators,” she said.

She also suggested wearing light layers under heavier ones, such as a light tank top under sweaters that are not close knit. “It’s going to help keep in more warmth than you realize,” she said.

Choosing the right fabric can also make a big difference in warmth. Natural fibers such as wool, cotton and silk are much warmer than synthetics, according to Tripp.

Wearing warm accessories is another strategy that can help you stay warm and look good. Scarves have become a popular accessory, and there are many different ways of tying scarves in order to add visual interest and to trap heat. “Lots of people just wrap scarves around [their neck], but if you fold it in half and tuck it through, it’s going to keep you warmer,” Tripp said. “Scarves are great accessories because they’re not too expensive, and you can change your outfit quite a bit with a scarf.”

Boots are another accessory highly in vogue. Tripp said comfortable flat boots are a staple for her. One of her favorite outfits pairs a black skirt with brown boots. “I used to be very against black going with any shade of brown. Now I do it all the time,” she said.

Emily Lewandowski, a senior radio and television broadcasting major, said she likes to accessorize with hats and gloves. “Your head and your feet are the greatest exports of heat in your body, so I love wearing hats,” she said. “Even sitting at a game or walking to class, it keeps me a lot warmer.”

Rob May, a senior business finance major, said students who want to dress professionally and stay warm can consider a number of options. “If it’s really cold, wearing a suit will add an extra layer, and you can wear a pea coat and a scarf over your suit and stay very professional,” he said. He also mentioned that a nice pair of gloves adds to a professional look and helps in keeping warm. “In my major it’s important to look good. If you don’t want to wear a suit or a sports coat, there are other options, but stay professional.”

Ellis Schoolfield, a junior dramatic production major, said that students shouldn’t have to sacrifice fashion for warmth. For him, putting thought into your wardrobe is the most important thing when it comes to fashion, and that principle applies year-round. “Overall, your outfit should be intelligent,” he said. “It should look like you put it on with care and then you forgot about it, like it’s just a natural part of you.”