Fashionista elaborates on the elements of style

Mikki Burcher

For those of us who are fashion-conscious, winter can be a dreary, boring month, full of coats, chunky sweaters, and dull colors. But never fear! This year the Review has you covered with the ins and outs of winter fashion as we tell you what winter trends have already made their way onto campus.

With cold weather comes your winter fashion staple: a quality coat. Those looking for a standard coat to last a few years shouldn’t fear paying a price. After all, this is the piece people will see you in the most. A good pea coat is perfect for women. A solid black or grey attests to elegance and poise, but a bright solid or patterned coat will really stand out in the crown.

For those who want a more cutting-edge look, the military coat is back in style, with designers like Ralph Lauren putting out both feminine and androgynous versions in mostly black.

Men are looking for sleek ski coats or trench coats, but not of the detective kind. Wool is the in fabric for men’s winter coats. For more trendy outerwear, men too can don a military jacket. Both Burberry and Dolce and Gabbana offer high-fashion military-esque coats to keep the guys looking fashionable and sleek.

The key to a fashionable winter ensemble for men or women is to pay attention to details and to accessorize, accessorize, accessorize. Details to look for in women’s lines include in-colors (red and purple), animal prints, studs, zippers, oversized jewelry, skinny jeans, leggings, dramatic shoes and small clutches or bags. The boyfriend look is still in for women, so don the military styles, leather jackets, or men’s button-up shirts.

Men are sporting darker colors with splashes of color: navy, deep green, grey, blacks and browns with hints of orange, white, and beige. Plaid button-ups are making a comeback, adding a hint of urbanization to men’s lines. And don’t forget that gloves, scarves, and hats can all make a fashion statement. Look for high-quality leather gloves and a scarf and hat that match each other and contrast your coat.

Of all the fashion trends for winter 2009, some have already made the long trek from catwalk to campus. Men around campus have been looking stylish with fitted pea coats and scarves. A few men have already picked up on the plaid-is-in element of the season, donning button-down plaids that could make the Brawny man jealous.

Women across campus have been sporting leggings all year, and the trend isn’t going anywhere. Fashionable and dramatic footwear is everywhere to be seen, ranging from knee-high boots with ornamentation to flats with outrageous decoration. Skinny jeans are, it seems, a new fashion staple for Washburn, and if they are tucked into some fancy boots, that makes them even better. And there has been a significant shift in purse sizes here at WU. Women are still carrying shoulder bags for books, but their purses have moved from carry-on status to cute-clutch chic.

But, even with these high-fashion elements making an appearance on our campus, it seems that the Washburn population is, and rightly so, focused on things a little more important than fashion. And so, despite the trends of the season, watch for the sweatpants, hoodies, jeans and tees that are sure to dominate the scene this winter at WU.