I've done many puzzles throughout my life -- 20 pieces, 100, 1,000 -- but packing for study abroad is by far the most challenging one I’ve encountered. Somehow, I was triumphant. I want to help you do your best and look your best while living out of a suitcase for four months. In this article, I will share with you five ways to style the five things in your suitcase.
My first piece of advice is one word only: BASICS! BASICS! BASICS! Basic staple pieces in your wardrobe will be your best friend while abroad. Basics allow you to re-wear and repair. A white shirt can create five different outfits on its own and look completely different with accessories and what you choose to pair it with!
My second piece of advice is to choose one or two statement pieces that go well with your basics to spice up an outfit. The statement pieces I chose to bring along with me are a black denim jacket with rhinestone fringe and my pink fuzzy sweater. It is still easy to pair with anything but gives a little flair to my look.
Lastly, bring one or two fun pairs of pants that will go with most things in your suitcase. I chose a pair of blue jeans and gingham pants. My jeans have a fun boot bottom made out of recycled jean material to give a patchwork look. However, since they are blue jeans, they still go with almost everything. Then, my white-and-black gingham pants, which are a fun statement pant but go with any basic top as they are white and black.
Now here are the five different ways to style these basic and statement pieces together. Remember that fashion is unique for everyone and a form of self-expression, so have fun with it!
First, I pair a basic black or white tee with gingham pants and my most trusted shoe Doc Martens. This is perfect for a summer night out or fall weather, and as it gets colder you can throw a fun jacket over it -- like my black denim jacket! This outfit would also go well with a pair of sandals or chunky sneakers.
The second outfit is a pink fuzzy sweater with jeans. Basic, but fun when you add in vinyl black boots. The key to basic outfits is to add a little fair with accessories. Whether it be your shoes, jewelry, or a belt, it can take your outfit to the next level.
The third look I pieced together are the same denim jeans with the black denim jacket and white tee. You can throw any top under this jacket: white T-shirt, pink fuzzy sweater, or truly any color. I chose to spice this outfit my favorite belt and vinyl black boots!
The fourth look is gingham pants with the pink fuzzy sweater. What is great about this sweater is its texture adds a little fun to the outfit, but is an easy color to pair with other pieces. I chose a pair of statement earrings to give this outfit a little bit of personality.
All five pieces were based on five pieces I took in my suitcase. I tried to link exactly what I had and if not I found a duplicate for the item. Remember that these are the five most basic things I have in my suitcase. These pieces can be paired with so many other things, like a bright yellow top or cheetah print pants. Don’t be afraid to throw some color and pattern into your wardrobe. But do remember that basics are everything when packing with little space for a long time.
Forever 21 Pink Translucent Belt
Zara Black Fringe Denim JacketTopshop Pearl Hoop Earrings
Marley Lucas is a CEA Content Contributor studying abroad in Seville, Spain, during the Fall 2019 semester. She is currently a student at the College of Charleston.
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