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We Can’t Start Wearing Parkas Yet

| Tuesday, November 11, 2014

parka WEBKERI O'MARA | The Observer
Stop. Do not break out your parka yet.

November is like that nearly empty tube of toothpaste sitting in your medicine cabinet — you can squeeze a bit more out of your fall wardrobe before conceding to the gripes of quilted black North Faces. There are so many types of coats to indulge in during this time that don’t look like sleeping bags when they’re lying on your floor.

This season has seen the return of 60s-inspired car coats. Channel your inner Twiggy with a pastel or saturated version to add some color to the soon-to-be grayscale landscape. I suggest investing in a wool version for the most warmth. Go cutesy with a Peter Pan collar or chic with a collarless version.

Fur is also big this fashion — not hunting — season. Miley Cyrus has embraced it; she sported pink fur earlier this year on the Grammy’s pre-party red carpet, and who could forget her regal Cruella de Vil-esque floor-length white coat she wore while parading around taxidermy animals in the “We Can’t Stop” video. You could even take this trend further by strapping a giant fur teddy bear to your back. Just kidding, then how would you wear your backpack around campus? Unless, like me, you own a fur teddy bear backpack from your Miley Cyrus Halloween costume last year.

But, fur-real, fur can provide an excellent layer to trap (pun-intended) in the heat. I even stole my mom’s purple-tinted fur coat while at home on fall break. If you have a less cool mom — one who doesn’t own purple fur coats — you can still hop in on the trend, but do so without killing those animals that hop.

Visit Forever 21 or ASOS fur some faux-fur stylings that won’t require you to pop expensive tags. You’ll end up with a coat even the campus squirrels will be jealous of. Colorful faux-fur is on trend — I know, you’re thinking “That’s So Raven,” but c’mon Raven was a fashion designer, she knew what she was doing.

So maybe you heeded my advice and now own a super chic coat that doesn’t have last year’s ski tags attached to it, but then something like the “bomb cyclone” hits the Midwest. No worries, just add a few extra layers.

Layering is a necessity, but the key to layering is picking warm, effective pieces to layer. For example, the fact that I layered seven pairs of underwear to go to preschool because I “liked all the princesses” is a not a great example of effective layering — wearing a turtleneck under cardigans, coats or dresses is.

Turtlenecks are no longer just for my elderly preschool teacher who didn’t appreciate the fact that I was wearing seven pairs of underwear to school when I had an accident. They’re on celebrities and runway models — Nicole Richie just wore a $40 white H&M turtleneck dress on a red carpet this past weekend. Believe me, you’re just turtle-ly enough for the turtleneck club.

Another key layering piece this season is the blanket scarf. Blanket scarves are perhaps the most conducive things to the college lifestyle ever to exist. You get out of bed to put on a blanket, then when you get to class you can unwrap it from your neck and drape it over your shoulders. How much easier is it to get out of bed when you never have to shed your blanket? In doing this you may feel like the Evil Queen from “Snow White” (when she gets all old and hunchy) — but hey, you’re on trend and warm, all at the same time. Now I’m just waiting for the comforter scarf to become a thing before December and final exams hit.

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About Erin McAuliffe

I'm Scene's editor and a senior Marketing & Journalism student. To quote the exquisite Sadie Dupuis, "I'm not bossy — I'm the boss."

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