On Friday, Sept. 2, Montclair State University held its first day of classes for the fall semester. Students at Montclair State participated in “First-Day Fits,” a time for students to show off their first-day outfits in front of University Hall.
The first day of college can feel very intimidating. For some students, this is where their style plays a big part in how they adapt to different environments. Many students use their style as a way to express their daily emotions or tap into their alter egos.
This hour allowed students to share what their first-day look meant to them and how their style contributes to their overall confidence. Students shared insight on who and what inspires them to be uniquely themselves.
Mars Adams, a freshman film and television major, shared why his style teaches him to be comfortable with himself.
Adams rocked an oversized hoodie with ripped fishnets and paired it with his favorite Steve Madden platform boots. Adam explains that dressing like this wasn’t always a part of his everyday lifestyle, and how over time he was able to be comfortable in the clothing he truly loves.
“I wasn’t allowed to wear what I wanted in high school,” Adams said. “I’m finally able to wear what I want and do my makeup as much as I want. I feel like the confidence that lives in me expresses through my fashion.”
Courtney Theodule, a senior jurisprudence, law and society major, advises incoming freshmen who want to get into fashion on campus to stay true to themselves.
“Since you’re on campus, be unique and be the one that stands out,” Theodule said. “Try not to be like everyone else or what everyone else wants to buy.”
Theodule started off her fall semester with a brown-toned outfit. She paired her pants and brown button-up shirt with a “Protect Black Women” bag from the black-owned brand CISE. She then topped it all off with her wildly patterned Adidas sneakers.
Theodule believes being on top of every trend doesn’t always make you the one that stands out.
“I like stuff that everyone doesn’t have,” Theodule said. “I just feel like that makes me unique on its own.”
Since the start of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there has been a rapid increase in the lack of individuality. Over time, people have begun to latch onto each other’s styles and favorite clothing pieces. While this can be great, it stops people from searching for what they like and don’t like.
Sheridan Harney, a freshman biology major, paired a black and white crop top with ripped low-rise jeans and black Doc Martens. Harney also sported different accessories such as a double grommet belt, studded bracelets and a white star tote bag.
Harney’s style inspiration comes from the early 2000s. She also advised on how others can incorporate things they are genuinely interested in through their style.
“Look at the media you consume and which parts [of] that you enjoy and just take all of it in,” Harney said. “Just don’t be afraid to express yourself.”
Fashion statements are a way to show off individuality. With the ability to make it their own, these students took pride in what they wore and how they presented themselves on their first day of school.