Skidstyle: What are they wearing?

Posted by Faith Nicholas

A conservative striped skirt topped with an embellished leather jacket. A proper sweater, khakis and combed hair offset by rugged boots. A sporty anorak covers a floral dress.

Are these designer fashions currently being sent down the runway? No. These are typical outfits seen on Skidmore's campus.

Take any model off the runways of the fall 2011 ready-to-wear shows in New York and he or she would fit perfectly into the Skidmore style world. Though the shows covered a range of different styles from classic to rugged to bohemian, the majority of shows this season were eclectic.

Patterns weighed heavily in the collections of Marc Jacobs and Proenza Schouler, while Libertine played with clashing prints and haphazard silhouettes. Thakoon Panichgul of Thakoon received inspiration from the costumes of Versailles and the clothes of Kenyan tribes.

Similarly an eclectic look represents the overall ‘Skidstyle.'

At Skidmore, style is about personal expression rather than just fashion.

A Sept. 16, 2010 post from the blog of the school's style photographer, the Skidtorialist, reads, "And what is fall fashion? Who the eff cares. With a little bit of aplomb, you can pull off anything."

Confidence pulls an assorted look together, whether the look is "fashionable," or not.

Harvesting a personal style is more important than being a slave of designer-declared fashion.

Outfits often pull from a range of inspirations. Wardrobes consist of items that do not ‘match' but still look good together.

Recycling clothes is popular on campus. Some pieces are bought at thrift stores, while some have been passed down from parents, relatives or friends. Almost all secondhand pieces tell a story.

Clothing swaps have been held by the Skidtorialist and the Environmental Action Club while the Freecycle table in Case Center allows students to leave unwanted clothing or pick up some ‘new' items.

An element of humor also runs through the student style, as can be seen in the ubiquitous knit hat resembling a lion, zebra or other animal.

Students pull from movies, television and the occasional runway show as well.

Looks appear unintentionally stylish and fresh.

Gina Doherty ‘14, said, "There is a definite vibe to clothing here, but it is hard to define. People do not look like they try too hard."

Some disagree with this statement. Tera Johnson ‘14, said Skidmore style can be split into three styles – the student ‘straight out of an Urban Outfitters catalog,' the one ready to go hiking after class and the jock. Male students spoken to believe some girls "dress like grandmothers."

While all these assumptions may be true in one way or another, one cannot deny that there are a wide variety of looks and styles on campus.

At its core Skidmore does not have one definitive style. Rather, it is a mix of elements that reflect personalities, interests, backgrounds and luck. Not everyone is blessed with the gift of shopping.

Skidmore students appear to be ahead of the curve fashion-wise. The fall runways were laden with models in Skidmore-esque outfits, which is admittedly pretty cool.

What is even cooler is that Skidmore students could care less whether they are in vogue. They are just dressing in what they like and what will keep them the warmest.

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