I have a terrible habit of waiting for the last minute to pack before going somewhere, even when that “somewhere” happens to be England and the trip is for an entire school year. The problem is that I just don’t know where to start or what I need to bring and what I don’t need. I know most people reading this have probably already started university, but maybe in the future it will save you (and the future me) that last-minute panic.
Here’s what I found worked best for me. First, I came up with all the different outfits I might need for university, and then I packed accordingly. Below is pretty much how I did it.
Things to pack:
- Trousers/Pants that aren’t jeans
- Acceptable shirt
This type of outfit could be useful for a multitude of things, from class presentations to job interviews. On the left is an autumn-coloured outfit with a white button-up under a camel blazer and patterned cigarette trousers. On the right is a slightly more feminine take with a skirt, tights, and oxfords along with a plain shirt and a blazer. The latter outfit was all-black because I was doing a pitch presentation, but you can choose whatever colours you want.
Things to pack:
- Sports bra
- T-Shirt or tank top
- Gym shoes
This outfit might be more useful to some than others, depending on who you are. You might want to join the gym, or try out one of the sports teams. Maybe doing exercise isn’t really your thing, but you want to try some dance lessons or even take a single defence class. Either way, you’ll want something you can move in. And if you haven’t got “official” workout clothes, you can do what I did and just wear an oversized t-shirt with some leggings and sneakers. Together they’re a workout outfit, separately they can become part of many outfit combinations!
- Dress or fancy clothes
- Heels or fancy shoes
- Coat fancy enough to wear over your fancy outfit, just in case
- Fancy purse
- Hair accessories/tools
For every school dance, night out, date, or award ceremony, you’ll need something fancier than usual to wear. How many of these fancy outfits you’ll need depends on you, and so does your definition of “fancy”. For example, I’m wearing a crop top, skirt, and heels with a bit of lipstick. Not exactly red carpet, but good enough for the occasion.
- Casual shirts
- Toque (known as a beanie to non-Canadians)
To be honest, that list is very specific to me. Everyone’s casual is different, but the point of the Adventure Outfit is that it should be suitable for every-day life (because you never know when you’ll be pulled into an adventure). It’s the kind of thing you might wear on an airplane, or going hiking, or exploring a city, or even just going to class at 9am on a Monday morning (those can be pretty big adventures). As you can see from the picture, an Adventure Outfit can be jeans and a t-shirt, and maybe something that can go over it if the weather gets bad. Some comfortable footwear is highly recommended and hats are completely optional. (Fun fact: I just realized I’m wearing the exact outfit in the picture as I’m writing this, minus the toque.)
Other things you might want to think about are winter gear (I know it’s warm now, but come the end of term that may not be the case), a swimsuit (depends), and pyjamas (I recommend a bathrobe for those annoying fire alarms in the night and travelling back to your room from the shared showers if you have to).
Hope this helps! Did I miss anything? Tell me below!