the westminster news
Published by the students of Westminster School
By Elle Dorrian ’22 and Jamai Miller ’22
So, the time has come to address the elephant CONSTANTLY in the room in an official, published space under a “Westminster Name.” The dress code. But seeing as how the Westminster faculty are tasked with imposing the traditional “workplace aesthetic” and “odd” second layer rules onto their student body, it may be ironic for the dress code to be addressed by two seniors who are honestly just tired of seeing the same stuff every day. With that said, let’s be clear from the get-go, Elle Dorrian ’22 and Jamai Miller ’22, just like a large percentage of the Westminster population, have serious beef with the dress code. But that’s a conversation for another time. For now, we have to work with what we’ve got. But that doesn’t mean we have to settle for boring; there are ways to spruce ourselves up within the context of these rules. Over our career at Westy, we’ve found ways to be fashionable, letting our personal fashion flares peek out of the traditional boarding school identity this dress code tries to lock everyone into. And so, we offer you a few tips.
1. Turtlenecks — Don’t listen to Mr. Huguley. On the contrary, boys, the turtleneck IS a good look. But personal feelings included, any chain added instantly makes your entire look tacky. Girls, this is the best item to get creative with your second layer, a patterned vest, sweater, or coat overtop is an excellent choice.
2. Trench Coats — International students have been on this wave for years, but unfortunately doesn't seem to be rubbing off on our American counterparts. Invest in one IMMEDIATELY. Not only perfect for winter term, but I think we all can agree that they add a certain air of bad-ass sophistication to your look.
3. Quarter-zips/Vests — This may not seem like a new tip considering this is a staple prep school item for boys, but we may be underestimating their power a bit. Strategically matching/contrasting your quarter zip/vest with your tie, pants or even shoes can be a real game changer, transforming your regular classroom dress from boring to interesting with a touch of the classic preppy. Super easy way for girls to fulfil the second layer rule without worrying about a jacket not matching.
4. Blazers — Ladies, I may be stating what is painfully obvious, given that the second layer is to “mimic the formality of the boy dress code”, but oversized blazers are in right now. They are elegant and chic and Zara has cute ones that don’t break the bank too badly. Stick with a neutral black or navy or get creative with a pastel. Add in some sleek texture with a leather blazer to easily elevate your look. Boys, invest in a blazer that is not navy. Please. SUCH an easy way to step up your outfits.
5. Cropped Cardigans — I’ve seen a huge rise in these this year and I am here for it. It is an easy addition to a fun top or a great way to add a pop of color into your outfit. Versatile for the seasons, it is an amazing closet staple. For warmer months, put it over a tank top or blouse and boom, second layer. I’ve noticed that the loose style ones everyone’s into are super breathable so you aren’t sweating in the heat of September. In the winter, throw it over a long sleeve top or fitted turtleneck and it still fits into a puffer, keeping you warm on the windy walk to class.
6. The Obvious — I know everyone knows this but I would feel incomplete without saying it. Leather jackets and white/black jean jackets are your best friend. A good quality black leather jacket will go with anything in the winter and last you a lifetime, and same goes with a white jean jacket. It is so simple yet so effective.