Fashion and Style Lifestyle

Pret A Porter

Some days the only time we leave college – or even our rooms – is to go on our daily trip for coffee. We’re often faced with a few dilemmas, perhaps including which coffee shop to go to, or which drink to order. But a recurring dilemma for many is: “What should I wear?”

Or maybe not. In the depths of an essay crisis, the main question in your mind is probably not what to wear, but the essay itself (or, at least, it should be). The time sacrifice of going to a coffee shop is stressful enough, let alone putting together a catwalk-outfit. So you venture into the city centre wearing something that resembles pyjamas, or whichever clothes you first grab from your wardrobe, or from the pile of clothes in the corner of your room. I have opted for this look many times, throwing on a large coat or hoodie over some very questionable fashion choices (pyjamas are definitely fashionable…).

If I’m particularly cautious of running into somebody, I’ll throw on some earrings to distract from my badly clashing patterns, odd socks, or the fact that I’m wearing sliders. But in this scenario, speed and comfort (and caffeine) are of the utmost importance; even if somebody catches me wearing mismatched shoes or fluffy pyjamas, so be it.

However, not every day is an essay crisis. If, by some miracle, there is some free time in your day, why not see the short walk to the coffee shop as a chance to show off some of your finest items of clothing? Cornmarket Street is the runway, and you are the model. Put your headphones in, play some empowering music, and walk through the doors of Pret like you run the world. Of course, you could do this wearing any outfit. But when I put thought into what I wear and coordinate an outfit, I feel more confident. Dress like you have somewhere to be, and walk with purpose – even if that purpose is only to get your caffeine fix for the day.

I love to wear an oversized blazer; it makes me feel more studious, especially if I decide to write off the day because there were no slots available in the library. Or, if it’s a sunnier day, I like to reflect that in my dress and go for something brighter. I have a pair of bright red culottes – admittedly, they might not be to everyone’s taste – that I absolutely adore and love to flaunt in the warmer months. Turtleneck tops also seem to go with absolutely everything, so if I’m stuck for ideas but want my outfit to be more put-together, sometimes less is more. My go-to is a black turtleneck with white jeans, or a white turtleneck with black jeans; the key, here, is to accessorise with a favourite piece of jewellery.

Sometimes I try to channel the types of outfits I find on social media: the “out-there” outfits which I could only dream of wearing, not being entirely my current style or even within my comfort zone. Trying out new makeup styles is always fun. Though with limited abilities like my own, my scope for creativity is limited to just trying out a new shade of eyeshadow. But what’s there to lose on the short walk to Pret? Why not try out the one colour on your eyeshadow palette that looks too daring to ever touch? You may discover your new staple look, or receive life’s highest level of compliment in the form of an Oxlove.

Gloria is a Junior Lifestyle Editor for The Oxford Blue. She is in her second year, studying Psychology & Linguistics at Christ Church. If not writing essays, you will usually find her binging a TV series, or procrastinating by re-organising her Spotify playlists.