August 25, 2013

The Dapper Man: O-Week Dress for Men

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It’s Orientation Week, people! This is one of the few times when it is expected to go up to strangers, start a conversation and maybe, just maybe, start a friendship. Every freshman, and I mean every freshman, is desperate for friends (or something more) so get yourself out there! Of course, as you are making a multitude of first impressions, be mindful of your style. During this time, all the people you meet will judge you by your demeanor, your personality and your clothes, so make sure that you look more than just lackluster. O–Week is as much about looking dapper as it is about looking like you. Here is a style guide to make sure your O–Week gear stays fresh:

Regional Wear

Cornell students come from all different states and all different countries, so if you have any cool apparel that represents your home, show it! Be proud of where you come from, and chances are there will be other freshmen hailing from the same place who will strike up a conversation with you. Also, if you are from somewhere pretty exotic, many freshmen will instantly be more interested in being your friend (I’m looking at you, students from Dubai). Personally, I come from California, and Cali wear is incredibly widespread and popular, so I have been able to center plenty of conversations around my apparel.

Not too casual, not too fancy

Orientation Week is a time to not be sloppy, but also a time not to be too showy. Nobody is going to give a second look to a guy dressed in a T–shirt, baggy shorts and flip-flops. However, everybody is going to give second looks to a guy dressed in a nice suit and tie. It’s your first week at Cornell, so at least put some effort into making yourself appropriately stylish. Bring out the sweatpants and pajamas once the school year starts when you don’t have time to make your outfits look nice. For now, wear your crisp shirts, bring out the fresh kicks and rock that snapback. Trust me, you won’t have to try for long.

New Start

This week is the first week of your college life! You see those clothes you are too shy to wear in high school because it’s a different style than you are used to? You see that shirt you’re not sure you can pull off? Well, here’s your chance! College is a new beginning in many ways, and for you it could also be a wardrobe revolution. Most of the students here don’t know you and don’t know the clothes you used to wear, so it’s the perfect time to establish yourself as a well-dressed individual.

DON’T wear your Class of 2017 shirt

Please, for the love of Cornell, DON’T put on that “Cornell Class of 2017” shirt. Please. I mean, it’s a nice shirt and all, but it just makes you look a little foolish especially around North Campus. People can usually tell you are a freshman, and the shirt is just too…meh. Nobody is going to compliment that shirt unless it’s for ironic effect. There are certain things that are expected to be worn during Orientation Week, and the Class of 2017 shirt is a big one. Keep out of the herd. I mean, if you really want to represent your new university, at least get something snazzier at the Cornell Store.

No matter what happens after, you will remember O-Week as a time full of discovery, excitement, new friends, new relationships and fun. Make sure you dress for the occasion.

Original Author: Eric Ding