Dress to Impress: College Spring Fashion Trends

With the new season officially here, it’s time to break out your springtime wardrobe and say hello to short sleeves, bright colors and floral prints.

As a college student on a budget, here’s some advice about incorporating this season’s trends into your campus wear without breaking the bank:

Black & White

The most classic combo, pairing black and white together this year is going to be huge. Start by adding a few staples to your collection, such as a white tee, black pencil skirt, white leather jacket, black pumps and matching clutch. The key to saving money while still looking cute is transitional pieces. Go with the shirt and jeans and sandals for class and save the jacket and skirt for your next internship orientation or college board advisory meeting.

Play With Texture

For something feminine yet trendy, pair a lace blouse with leather-like jeans. Finalize the look with a printed bag and a few silver accessories. Instead of heading to the mall to accomplish this trendy feat, see what you have in your closet that will do. Spruce up old cut-offs with lace or use fabric glue to embellish jean shorts with studs. Adhesive costs only a few dollars at craft stores and what comes in the bottle will last you for several projects.


Skinny stripes are so last season. According to fashion magazine Elle.com, the runways have revealed that thicker stripes are all the rave. If you don’t have the money to add several new pieces to your wardrobe, opt for a wide-striped bag you can pair with several outfits instead. For an original look, use fabric paint to paint large stripes on plain shoes, book bags or even jeans if you’re bold enough.

Top It Off

Springtime calls for spring weather, meaning you may want to cover your pretty little head with a cute fedora. Add a pop of color to a straw hat with ribbon or faux flowers. Or opt for one with subtle coloring already stitched, such as this Bayside Beaute ($17) from Urbanog.com.

Fit to Print

We’re still thinking about when Diamond White rocked galaxy leggings on the X Factor last year, and Elle.com confirms that large prints are definitely still trending this season. Pair a floral dress with a bright tote, or think about printed leggings, graphic tees and motorcycle jackets (we like the Grateful Dead one).

Sheer Genius

Notorious for being hard to manage, sheer is a tricky trend that should be approached with caution. Though most college classrooms are laxer than high school settings, save your sheer for parties, formal functions and nightlife on campus. Well, unless you can pull it off right — with no visible undergarments.

Bold and Bright

No matter the year, bold and bright are spring basics. Sort through your closet for last year’s neons and florals. Pair a tunic over cropped pants (Refinery29.com swears the dress-over-pants look is back in) and complete with a bright yellow or emerald green tote that’s large enough to hold even your heaviest of textbooks.

School Spirit

Even if, you aren’t at every game cheering on the sidelines, be aware of your college’s culture and show some university pride. Though you might steer clear of sporting orange (sorry Longhorns), try not to wear the opponents colors on game day either, (even if you look fantastic in Oklahoma-Sooners red).

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Lauren Anderson is a certified school counselor who's passionate about helping students all over the world successfully transition from high school to college! After spending 6 years as a business professional, she obtained her Master’s degree in School Counseling and now spends her spare time helping students.

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