Winter is upon us which means the season for sky-high heels and scandalously short dresses should be coming to a close. I for one am never caught without a pair of boots, a scarf, and my parka after the weather drops below 32 degrees. That is, if I get out of bed to begin with.
With that said, it’s time to face the music. Now that we’re college girls, a transition from the typical high school Northface, UGGs, and leggings combo to a new, more stylized look is absolutely essential. My favorite for this winter? A feminine twist on flannel and vests that I am christening “Girly Grunge.” (picture below from J.Crew of course, because they get me).
These are a must! And no, UGGs don’t count, and neither do slouchy suede boots or cowboy boots. I’m talking leather boots that range from mid calf to bootie length. They are warm enough to keep your toes from freezing off but are also perfect for pairing with winter-weight socks.
2. Statement socks
Leather boots just aren’t the same without statement socks to pull together the look. The uglier and gaudier the better (yeah, I can’t believe I just typed that either). You can match them with the rest of the outfit or, if you’re anything like me, let them do their own thing.
Note: sometimes, pulling the sock up to its normal height looks weird in contrast with the boot, so I would advise pushing the fabric down a bit until it lightly bunches. BAM.
3. Skinny jeans or thick, winter weight leggings
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: skinny jeans are a wardrobe staple. You can dress them up, you can dress them down, and they are PERFECT for this look because they highlight the figure but are much, much warmer than a short skirt or dress. Leggings are also a great alternative, but make sure they’re winter weight to 1. ensure you’re warm enough and 2. so you don’t end up looking like a ho (for more information on proper legging-wear, see The Five Leggings Commandments).
Although a slouchy sweater can get the job done, nothing beats a good flannel in the winter months. They work well with scarves, keep you warm, and cover up your booty when you’re wearing leggings as pants. Plus, they look great layered with my favorite winter accessory: the vest.
5. Two go-to scarves
Every girl should have at least two scarves: one in a neutral color that goes with everything and one multi-colored one that can act as a statement piece. Scarves and pashminas are great with flannels and/or slouchy sweaters. I have a wool infinity scarf in a nice light brown color that I’ll throw on with anything and a beautiful tapestry print pashmina with enough colors that it always matches some part of my shirt or shoes.
6. The optionals
Okay, so while you might not have every one of the items below, each on its own has the potential to spice things up. Remember that since this look incorporates a lot of masculine aspects, adding feminine touches is CRUCIAL.
- Vest: I am vest obsessed. I wear them with everything, 1. because I am always cold and 2. because when worn right, they can really pull together an outfit and add the something extra that was missing.
- Lipstick: As I mentioned before, this is a very “tough” look, so adding a few girly touches keeps it from becoming too masculine. I love wearing this style with a bright pink lip to add a little pop of color (However–I’m still trying to figure out how to wear lipstick in the fabulously effortless way Sofia Vergara does in the Cover Girl ads. Umm how does it not get ruined every time you sip from a glass or kiss somebody…? #confused).
- A hair bandana/bow: To me, a cute bow is the ultimate feminine accessory. It doesn’t have to be a special hair scarf either; take any bandana or small scarf and size it to your head. Finish it off with a cheery bow and you’re good to go.
- Top knot: This look is especially well-suited to those days when a shower is just not going to happen (which is every other day for yours truly….) Annnnyways, an especially high top knot looks great with this style of clothing and, *once again* adds a little extra something. Every time I wear my hair up like this I feel a little sassier. Hmm…
- It’s not meant to be a “country” style, so choose your flannel carefully. If it the shirt has a breast pocket on each side, it is dangerously close to being off the mark, especially when paired with leather boots. Solution? Add a scarf to avoid any confusion.
- Girly grunge is borderline hobo-chic, so steer clear of blurring the lines by not pairing your outfit with a slouchy bag or a beanie hat. Ahem, you’re trying to look effortlessly feminine here, not homeless.
- And most importantly, remember to add the feminine touches!
And, since I nevahhh post pics, I decided it was high time for a mirror selfie in my own version of girly grunge:
For additional inspiration, check out my “Girly Grunge” Pinterest board!
As always, I would like to make it clear that none of these images are my own. You can find all of these pictures on my Pinterest board. Happy reading!!