Arts and Culture Fashion

Spring 2023 Fashion Trends on Wheaton Campus

Spring has always been seen as the season of floral dresses, light clothing, and pastel color palettes. However, our Spring feels currently like an extended winter with sporadic, short-lived warm days in Norton. In light of the erratic weather, here are Wheaton’s must-haves and trends.

1. Leather

Leather, either faux or genuine, has been seen across campus year after year. Leather can make or break outfits, but the product itself is elegant and can give you that slight edginess you need to perfect your look. However, leather can be pretty harmful for the environment. Taking this into account, most students that wear leather jackets say the items were either thrifted or from their parents. Leather jackets can be layered on top of outer clothing including, but not limited to, hoodies, sweatshirts, and shirt jackets.

Photo from Depop

2. Boots

The most popular boot brands around Wheaton are Doc Martens and Timberlands. While these are a bit pricey, both tend to be of high quality with the durability to withstand snow and rough weather. Boots’ versatility make them essentials in the unpredictable conditions of New England. They can be worn in formal occasions if paired alongside trousers, a nice belt, and a tucked-in sweater with a coat on top, or worn casually with jeans and jackets. Still, boots just don’t work with athleisure sweatpants, which aren’t easily paired with anything aside from sneakers. 

Photo from Instagram

3. Flared Bottoms & Bootcut Jeans

Loose bottoms have been all the rave since their comeback in late 2019. From mom jeans to boyfriend jeans and now flared bottoms, this style of fashion has been a recurrent presence throughout the decades, with their first popular appearances in the early 2000s on Jennifer Aniston, Kate Moss and other celebrities. In 2023, flared bottoms and bootcut jeans have made their way into closets world-wide. What was once seen as a female staple piece of clothing has now evolved into a gender-neutral essential. These bottoms can be paired with sneakers, boots, heels and a mix-and-match of almost anything. It is a simple item that can be elevated with accessories and worn casually or as a statement. 

Via Instagram and Google @joannemmm 

4. Athleisure

Okay, hear me out. Athleisure is not technically fashion, but it is a category of clothing and since Wheaton is quite saturated with student athletes, this section is a must. Athleisure is just athletic wear that’s worn on the regular, including leggings, sweats, workout sneakers, or even track pants. With midterms and projects, athleisure is an easy go-to for stressed students on campus. It is comfortable, flexible, and very easy to put together. Wearing a tracksuit isn’t really considered fashion, but pairing it with a statement jacket or a unique accessory can completely enhance the outfit. 

Via Instagram @yunkoro519 

Fashion is not limited just to specific aesthetics. It is a conduit for human expression and one of the easiest ways to showcase your personality. While most of the items mentioned above are categorized as trends, they are also products for long-term wear. Fast fashion and shorter trends such as Astro Boots, super mini bags, fashion nova dupes, and NakedWolfe shoe dupes are unsustainable and impractical. 

Above all, these are extremely harmful to the environment and leave little room for smaller businesses to grow. The result of fast fashion, aside from the carbon footprint and unethical labor, is the abundance of brands like H&M and Shein in thrift stores that were once filled with unique brands and vintage pieces. When shopping for clothing, shoes, and accessories, be mindful of the longevity of your pieces and the footprint of your decision. Expression and fashion doesn’t need to have a large environmental cost.