Living Out of a Suitcase as a Fashion Major

Before my journey overseas, I had slowly been gathering all the clothes I could find to bring with me. Being a fashion major, this was a bit tricky. Especially since I was unable to bring all of the pieces I wanted to. As I started to pack my 26” suitcases, which has to be under 50 pounds, I began to notice this was going to be a bit of a challenge. So, I made a list. Starting with all of my favorite staple pieces, to a few of my trendy favorites. After a few days I had packed both of my suitcases to the maximum weight requirement. I thought to myself well this is perfect! I have all of my staple pieces and few more, including all of my favorite shoes. I thought I had it all figured out; I was ready to start my stylish journey.

Once I arrived in London, I was so excited. I was putting some of my favorite pieces together, and starting to pick up on the fashion trends here as well. Little did I know that after a week I would have worn all of my outfits and ran out of ideas to work with in my small 50-pound closet. Being a fashion major, this was a bit heartbreaking for me. I am so used to being able to travel with all my favorite pieces to school, but now I had a limit and I had to make the best of it.

An outfit made out of some of my favorite staples

I can’t lie, I have made a few trips to Primark, my new favorite store in the U.K. Which, is a store that is filled with the all of the latest trends for the best bargain prices. I have gone in for things like sweaters, since when I packed I did not realize how chilly it would be either. So, after grabbing a few sweaters and scarfs, I still had a much smaller closet than I was used to. Being creative has been something I have come accustomed to. Not only has it made me think more about the pieces I love, but think about how this could help my career as well. I have learned how to turn a few pieces of clothing into an entire wardrobe of looks and outfits. To me, this is an extremely valuable skill, especially when entering the fashion world. This will not only allow me to become stronger with styling skills, but help strengthen my creative mind.

Give the same outfit a new look by adding a fur coat

Comfort has also been something I have come to love. Before when I would dress, it would be all for looks. Now, while I am still dressing to achieve some sort of look, I am also dressing to achieve comfort and warmth. Both things I am learning to adapt to. Here, most people have grown up in this type of climate, so they are used to achieving their style while also staying warm. I, on the other hand, am very new to this type of living. I am not used to having to walk everywhere, and be in colder temperatures for longer periods of time. Now that I am living in the center of a city, one much comparable to the windy city of New York, I have to adapt to its climate. I am learning to love sweaters and leggings, as much as I love high fashion. Layering and warm coats have also become my best friends.

Learning to adapt to a new climate and city is definitely a big change. Overall, I believe it has been a great thing for me. It has not only allowed me to expand my fashion pallet, but also learn how to become a better traveler. I now know how to pack. That being for comfort and fashion, and not just because I love a stylish piece of clothing. It has been a big change from what I am used to, but I think it is overall extremely helpful for me and my future career.

Sydney Helphenstine 

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