How to spice up your school uniform

Written by roxana wells
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School uniforms can be a drag, but there are several easy and inexpensive ways to spice up that wardrobe without getting sent to the principal's office.

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Things you need

  • Copy of school's dress code policy
  • Leggings
  • Tights
  • Scarves
  • Belts
  • Hair accessories
  • Jewellery

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    First, check out your school's dress code or uniform policy. Some schools only specify colour and style of clothing. For example, you may have to wear a plain white or navy collared shirt with khaki trousers or a skirt. Other schools are more specific, stating that you must stick to certain sock colours, shoe styles and jewellery. The last thing you want is to get in trouble, so follow your school's guidelines.

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    Play with clothing style. Your school specifies that you must wear a khaki skirt, but are there rules about sticking to A-line? Try a pleated skirt or knee-length pencil skirt for an updated look. If you need a collared shirt try a Peter Pan collar or classic button-down dress shirt instead of the everyday polo. If you must wear plain polos, layer two different colours. If your school specifies turtlenecks, try a trendy cowl-neck or mock turtleneck instead of the common fold-over type.

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    Make it fit. Nothing says high fashion like perfectly tailored clothing. Never wear a shirt, skirt or pair of trousers that is too tight or too baggy. If your body type is hard to fit, buy items one size too big and head to your local tailor to make it fit just right.

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    Get creative with cold weather clothing. Most schools allow you to keep warm in the winter months by adding long-sleeved undershirts, leggings or sweaters. Dress up your everyday look with brightly coloured tights and a matching cardigan. Rotate textured leggings, knee-high socks and sweater vests throughout the winter to keep things fresh.

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    Accessorise. Add a fun scarf to jazz up a dull uniform. Even tying a plain navy silk scarf around your neck can make a fashion statement, if your school is strict on colours. Jewellery can also add sparkle to a lacklustre ensemble. Try boldly coloured beads, bangle bracelets or big drop earrings to catch everyone's eye. To follow the latest trend, add a few fun belts into your wardrobe rotation. Also, wearing a pair of ballet flats with knee-high socks is sure to score fashion points.

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    Change your hair style. Try going straight one day and curly the next. Braid small sections of your hair and fasten with colourful elastics. Use ribbons in bold colours to tie your hair back. Rotate scarves, headbands, barrettes, and even hair glitter into your accessory repertoire. Nothing says updated like a new 'do.

  7. 7

    Stand out with your books. Choose a backpack, tote or binder with a fun print that coordinates with your uniform. Personalise it with patches, buttons or ribbons, and carry your books in style.

Tips and warnings

  • If your school rules are very strict about the uniform and do not allow the above changes, write a polite letter to your school's administration. You could ask for Accessory Days in which students are free to accessorise their uniforms as an incentive for good behaviour or a prize for a homeroom competition.
  • Always follow your specific school's uniform policy to avoid getting into trouble.

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