2014 back-to-school guide to fashion, as changeable as the weather

By Maria Baulch

Take it from someone who has lived in Boston for a little over a year now: I have realized that the weather can be a little unpredictable at this time of year. Some days it is so cold that leaving the house, let alone getting out of bed, seems impossible and some days it is so warm that you just want to lounge in the Boston Common. So when it comes to changeable weather like this, what do you wear? Well only one word comes to mind: layers.

It can be quite confusing in the morning when it is freezing outside and we have to get ready for class, work or other obligations, but by afternoon it is pretty sunny and calm. Instead stuffing your bag with last-minute weather changing outfits, the best thing to do is layer effectively. So empty your bag of all those clothes because we can be real, you need room to carry your textbooks as is.

For the days when it is not slightly cold, skip the oversized thick sweater and instead choose a chunky knit cardigan. Pair the knit cardigan with a casual top underneath so you can stay warm and easily slip off the cardigan when you’re indoors, or later on in the day when the weather is bearable. This can also be good for those who love wearing knitwear but have sensitive skin, like me. Wearing something like a casual t-shirt underneath can help to not chafe the skin.

Another helpful and comfy layering method is a hoodie. A simple hoodie can be really great for when you want to wear a feminine top such as a chiffon or satin blouse. Whether full sleeves or sleeveless, you can wear it underneath a fleece-lined zipper hoodie along with your usual winter jacket. Not only does this help defend you from the chilly wind, but also allows you take control so you can be confident with what is underneath when it is time to take off the jacket.

Tops and sweaters are not the only thing that can be layered. For the days when you’re running out the door, a two-in-one parka can really come in handy. Two-in-one parka-type coats are great because they come with an internal quilted bomber jacket that can be removed. Now you don’t have to torture yourself and keep your heavy jacket on when the weather gets mild. Instead you can easily remove the lining and wear each piece separately, whichever best fits to how cold or warm you are.

Now for the trickiest part of all when it comes to choosing an outfit: the legs. I always find it quite confusing as to what to wear for bottoms and opt for classic black leggings, as do most girls in Boston – don’t take my word for it, take a stroll through the streets and you will see for yourself. Skip the denim and don’t wear jeans as they don’t keep the cold out, and get quite uncomfortable during warmer conditions. A pair of fleece-lined leggings will be cozy on your legs and will even be fine with the changing weather as it won’t make your legs sweat as pants or jeans.

Sadly, none of us can predict the weather, especially in Boston, but wearing an outfit that can easily adapt to the weather and add or remove pieces is a great way to be prepared.