The Uni Capsule Wardrobe


The Nouse team talk us through their uni wardrobe wardrobe essentials

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Image by Flickr, @ apairandaspare

By Zara Osako

Packing for university is daunting and overwhelming with the thoughts of “do I need to pack up my whole room? Will I actually wear this? Should I bring this ‘just in case’?” streaming through your head. With limited space, and the uni accommodation wardrobe that just doesn’t quite cut it for my spending habits, I quickly learnt that bringing my entire wardrobe wasn’t an option – you simply don’t need that many shoes. By my third year, I think I’ve just about nailed the ‘uni wardrobe’ and sussed out what I will and won’t wear. Admittedly though, I can still be guilty of the ‘you never know’ excuse and so I have also reached out to the fellow Nouse team for their essentials to ensure a full proof guide to the uni capsule wardrobe. 

For myself, a uni “must have” has to be some “clubbing shoes” – a pair of trainers exclusively reserved for nights out. They will inevitably become dyed by VK, but you’ll be able to party the night away on a Salvo’s Wednesday without any blisters,  and be comfortable enough to face the walk back to campus when the bus is too full. You won’t see a night-out picture of me without my trusty, filthy, once-white converse, but I would also recommend vans – both super versatile and comfy! Something else I found myself living in throughout first year was a pair of black ribbed flares- whether I was throwing them on with a hoodie for a 9am lecture, or pairing them with a crop top for a night out, they had to be the most versatile piece in my wardrobe.

Temporarily straying from the night out theme, although admittedly much of my wardrobe did centre around ensuring I always had an outfit planned for a spontaneous Tuesday night out, my final recommendation would be a blazer – smart enough for when the parents come up for a day of sightseeing and a free lunch, but just as easy to throw on for a walk into town on an autumnal York afternoon.

Lucy Cooper, Deputy Nouse Editor, generously advised us on a few of her wardrobe essentials, looking fondly back on first year: “I have a few things that I remember wishing I had: a jacket with a hood! When it’s raining on a night out, having a hood is literally a lifesaver when queuing. I would also recommend fancy dress clothing, specifically a tie and a Hawaiian shirt as they will always come in handy. I also found a plain black turtleneck saved the day; I could wear it by itself or layer it up – essential for York winter”

Cara Lee, Deputy Arts Editor, shares her “absolute essential”: “big chunky black boots – so versatile – I absolutely loved stomping down the steps in the Spring Lane building lecture hall before heading on a night out” – campus is your runway, after all.

Bearing the hungover 9am lectures in mind, Marti Stelling recommends “Joggers! Lots of joggers – you can never have enough. Realistically, you don’t want to be sitting in lectures and seminars all day in jeans that cut off your circulation!” – we’ve all been there.

Finally, our Muse Editor, Elizabeth Walsh, shares her “essential for every night out”: “a warm but lightweight jacket that’s not your coat. My go to is my teddy bear coat every time as it’s appropriate for a night out while still comfy and can easily tuck under my arm when I don’t want to wear it anymore!” – anything to save me from the £2 cloak room fee convinces me!