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Fashion Growth: The College Years

By  Justin Carreiro     9:46 PM    Labels:,,,, 
Yearbooks remind me of how different fashion styles were back in high school. Usually it takes about 10 to 15 years for people to utter the lines, "What the hell was I thinking?" Recently, I was moving some stuff around and looked through a couple of yearbooks. 

High school was about three years ago and I went to a Catholic school so reminding myself about my fashion style back then was like grasping at straws. I noticed some of the pictures where I was wearing "civvies clothes" (this means civilian clothes compared to our uniforms for those who are unfamiliar with the term) and it intrigued me to look back at pictures I took in high school on my Facebook. I realized something: the effort I spent then on personal style and finding things I liked was nothing compared to the detail I spend now.

Style: (1st Semester) Casual with a mix of relaxed Punk.
         (2nd Semester) Casual but improving style-wise.
Unfavourable Pieces: Stripped Zip-Up Hoodie, Scuffed White K-Swiss shoes, unfitted white graphic tees.
Memorable Pieces: Dark jeans, black buttoned-up top, black vest.
This ensemble was all I needed
Thoughts: "Thank God for second semester and some important advice."

In my first year of college, my friends now can admit that my fashion sense was lacking. I mostly wore graphic tees with blue jeans and tried to pass that off. For an unknown and idiotic notion on my part, the concept of size and fit did not matter because I ended up purchasing tops that were either one or two sizes too big. Skulls on polos was something I thought I could pull off and I'm so sorry Mel that you had to deal with that. After the new year and my first job, I had a steady income and started to take at least some interest to purchase some fashion-forward outfits like tops from Le Chateau, a vest from H&M, and jeans from Urban Behaviour. My biggest problem was still the size issue because I bought medium and larges when I was actually a small.

Style: (3rd Semester) Casual meets Preppy and Club.
          (4th Semester) Preppy, Urban and Indie (in my wildest dreams for the last two).
Unfavourable Pieces: Black running shoes (passed them off as dress shoes), over-sized black polo, over-sized blazer/hoodie combination, and a selection of random pieces.
Memorable Pieces: Fitted clothes, Converse, Argyle sweaters, vests, black zip-up hoodie, sun glasses, and v-neck tees.
Thoughts: "Think a relaxed version of Dan from Gossip Girl yet affordable is where I wanted to be."

Second year really marked a turning point for individual style. I started working at Gap and things were much easier to distinguish where I wanted my style to lean towards. Pulling off skinny jeans is an accomplishment and my outfit pieces were becoming more fitted. The highlight was hearing Michelle say, "your shirt looks really good; it's better than your graphic tees." That joke really made me laugh but hey, I still wear t-shirts and some of the v-necks I got at Bluenotes I still have to this day. Fashion was something that I paid more attention to starting at this period to make me more professional instead of being too casual.

Style: (5th Semester and Present) Preppy, Modern, and Hipster (Really Kemeny?!?!).
Brands: American Apparel, Gap, H&M, Mexx, Le Chateau, Forever 21, Burberry, Banana Republic, and Urban Behaviour.
Unfavourable Pieces: I don't really have any but if I had to choose it would polos. I've never really been able to pull them off and for a time I thought I could finally do it; end result: I can't.
Memorable Pieces: Black double-breasted wool coat, black dress shoes (I think I just heard my high school graduating class all cheering simultaneously), skinny tie, scarf, black fitted pants, and faux-leather jacket.
Thoughts:  "Trends come and go but personal style is all that matters"

I feel if there was a point that I could look at as the fashion style that was really me, it would have to be my style right now. It's professional/preppy yet casual, hipster yet modern-on-trend; it's me and people took notice.

If there was something I could tell myself (five years ago) and to anyone else is that your personal style and tastes will grow as you mature. The brands and outfits that you may have liked in the past will not be the same things you want to wear out of the house in the future. Skulls, white scuffed-up sneakers, and over-sized hoodies may be nice back then but remember to know that you're tastes will change and your personal style will grow. Look back with a smile, remember all the good times, and donate them to a worthy charity. Be confident and brace yourself to cringe when you look back and have your own WTHWIT moment.

About Justin Carreiro

Justin is a longtime TV buff and gamer. He loves chatting about shows, playing video and board games, and his not-so-secret love for reality tv. He is also a fan of horror movies, music and a bookworm at heart. He spends his time in Toronto working in PR and Social Media.

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