Monday, October 29, 2012

Prelude to the post: Dear East Coasters, wishing you and your loved ones plenty of safety and sanity over the next few Sandy days. (Alliteration much? Try saying that sentence ten times fast). Let's hope this "Perfect Storm" is more hype than harm. Seriously...I'm praying we don't lose power. We hope you enjoy the following post.
  Get Your Geek On!

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         Autumn, like a romantic lover, is a soothing companion: There is hot chocolate to quietly console your throat, a gentle wind to whisper sweet nothings into your ear, cashmere to caress the smoothness of your skin, and leaves to satisfyingly crunch under your boots. Yet, there is another characteristic that I attribute to fall, and that is the annual resurgence of "Geek Chic." The mesmerizing color of trees and the rejuvenation that lingers in the crisp air symbolizes the fresh start of the academic year. Being that I recently graduated college and am no longer in school (at least for now), I become nostalgic when I see students striding to the library, clutching their textbooks and lattes, a twinkle of determined resolve in their eyes... Trust me; I am far from envious of their burdensome jumble of exams, reports, and presentations. I just simply miss collegiate ensembles, studious looks, and all forms of Geek Chic.
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         Being that I usually ascribe deeper, "psychological" reasons to my Personal Style, I must mention why I am continually drawn to the classic schoolgirl fashion. Although I despised the itchy mid-length uniform skirt and prison-striped button-up that I wore everyday in elementary and high school, I’ve developed a peculiar attachment towards them. How can I not? I’ve worn that desperately dull outfit for the majority of life--so whether I like it or not, schoolgirl panache is now and forevermore “my thing.”

         We’ve all got a bit of Geek dwelling within us (I’m a Literature Geek, Seinfeld Geek, and Shark Week Geek), so even if we’re no longer trudging the stairs to our classroom or scheduling meetings with Professors, we’ve still got the unalienable right to dress like Steve Urkel did in his prime.

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Below are Geek Chic looks that you can wear to your next study-hall session, work day, music jam, trip to the zoo, or whatever. (Like I said, Geek Chic isn’t just for the brainy boys and girls and their library conferences).  
I’ve also included ways in which you can “modernize” or “update” the schoolgirl look--so that it can be a bit trendier or simply more “Rebel meets Einstein."

Collared Shirts  
Buttoned-Up Collared Shirts are the style hallmark of the contemplative bookworm.
The fact that they're totally on-trend this season only adds to the inherent elegance and charm of this wardrobe staple.
Enliven the "restraint" of a buttoned-up blouse with a dash of color on your outfit and on your lips.
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Marc by Marc Jacobs Fall 2012

Add a contemporary edge to your schoolgirl ensemble by either mixing patterns, adding a statement necklace, or simply donning an animal-motif button-up. All of these aforementioned looks are trending on the runway.  
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Studded leather is another way to modernize a traditional button-up, Peter-Pan collar, or schoolgirl outfit. Edgy, au courant, and very "Patti Smith meets Emily Dickinson." What more could you possibly ask for?
Pleated Skirts
A Pleated Skirt is the second fashion trademark of the studious girl. It's a feminine piece that sways beautifully with your every motion. How can you update this demure classic? Ditch the traditional loafers or Mary-Janes, and consider pairing your pleated skirt with a more subversive shoe for an exciting, urban take on Geek Chic.
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Does this Marc by Marc Jacobs (Fall 2012) ensemble strike your fancy as being intelligent with a dash of rebellion? The pleated skirt + masculine bootie pairing is to blame.
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I love the sly sweetness that this photo captures. There is a sense that Ms. Goody-Goody Two Shoes over here is scheming. The look can be credited in part to the woman's eyes and in part to what she is wearing (pleated skirt+ unpredictable shoe).

Plaid is the third telltale sign of collegiate class  (*ahem* no pun intended). Gosh, do I obsess over plaid. In fact, my e-mail address is Why did I dedicate my e-mail to a pattern? In my mind, plaid is reminiscent of evenings by the fireplace (with a mug of cocoa and book in hand). Below are several ways you can wear this evocatively cozy pattern:
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1) Accessorize it: If you're leery of too much pattern play, then may I suggest just a bit of plaid? Choose an accessory with plaid--such as a scarf, gloves, or even subtle detailing on your clothes. I admire how the woman in the above photo balances the academic feel of plaid with careless, beachy waves. Very cool. 
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2) Pencil Skirt it: Instead of conventional denim, join your plaid top with a fitted pencil skirt. Flirty details (such as peplum or a fluted bottom) will create a fashion-savvy contrast of feminine and masculine. Preppy and ever so polished.
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3) Denim Shirt it: Button up your Chambray or Denim shirt over your plaid midi or knee-length skirt. Heeled booties seal the deal. "Rebel meets Einstein" right here.

That's all for now my fellow schoolgirls! The days of uniform-wearing are all too happily over, but don't you want to swag your Geek for nostalgic purposes? Or simply because you're proud of your innate bookishness and nerdom? Wear that pride on your sleeve girls. Metaphorically and well...literally.
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Photo Accreditation:
Printed bird shirt:
Marc by Marc Jacobs

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