Closets in dorm rooms are small. I’m not kidding when I say that. And as an avid over-packer, making the change from my walk-in closet at home to the tiny wardrobe in my new “room” was quite the culture shock. Not to mention most of what I brought ended up untouched for the rest of the year! Now, with a few years of college living behind me, these are the tips I wish someone had shared with me when I was making the big move.
- Good Jeans: Jeans are the most basic fashion item. Bring with you a few pairs you love and know fit perfectly. They’ll be the perfect starter item that you can later jazz up with other accessories.
- A Basic White-T: Another perfect starter piece is a white t-shirt. Throw a blazer on top, add a scarf, or dress it up. Essentially there is no situation where wearing a plain white tee is not applicable.
- Scarves: Chances are your lecture halls are going to be drafty. A statement scarf is the perfect way to keep warm while looking tres chic! Pack a few different ones and pair them with your white t-shirt and you have multiple outfits!
- Sweaters: The wonky air conditioner in your dorm room is at it again and your room is beginning to feel like the arctic. Keeping a sweater or two on hand is a great way to stay warm when you can’t trust the university’s appliances. Plus, if you go to school in a place that will be hit with chilly winters, a cardigan sweater is the perfect layering piece.
- Rainboots: Class may be cancelled in the event of a snow storm, but don’t expect to be holed up in your room safe and sound during a thunderstorm. Unless you’re the Wicked Witch of the West, your professors will be looking for you in class so toss on a sturdy pair of wellies, grab your bubble umbrella, and start walking.
- Workout Clothes: Most colleges and universities have a gym or workout facility on hand that is accessible to students. To avoid the “Freshman 15” pack some cute workout clothes that will motivate you to get up and get going.
- Dressy Outfits: You’ll want things you can wear to your sorority’s formal event, a nice dinner out, and an interview. Then, you want something you can wear for a night out, think body-con skirts and bandeaus…er, dressy tops.
- Cute Pajamas:You’re living on a floor with 30+ other people, chances are you’re going to run into them in the halls when you just wake up, have a late-night pizza party in someone’s room, or when the fire alarm is blaring at 4 a.m. You don’t want to be caught dead in those old flannels so don’t even bring them!
- High School Logos: Do not, I repeat, DO NOT pack anything that says your high school’s name on it. Trust me, “Class of 2013” shirts are sooo last year. To avoid countless dirty looks, leave behind items that have the symbol for other colleges as well.
- Statement Heels: I know your sparkly pumps are super cute and all but if you don’t want them ruined, leave them behind. Instead, just pack a basic black pair of heels that you can throw on when going out at night.
- Off Season Clothes: School is from August to May so unless you’re going to school somewhere with a warmer climate, you won’t be wearing shorts and tank tops for very long. Instead of bringing them with you, pack a few essentials in a box you leave at home that way when you change your mind mom and dad can just ship it to you!
- That One Top You Think You Might Wear But Know You Never Will: College is about growing up and becoming a new person, but if that one edgy top has been sitting in your closet for 4 years and you still don’t have the confidence to put it on you’re not going to wear it at school either.
- Expensive Items: They’ll all either get lost, ruined, or stolen so don’t bring with you anything you can’t stand to part with. Your Louis Vuitton clutch might go perfectly with that dress but it’s safer when left at home.
What else is a college essential?