Whilst Tom’s Trunks and Ralph Lauren jumpers stay in permanent rotation for residents of EX4, the rest of the world seems more prone to the rhythms and trends set by high fashion brands and socialites alike. Our Exeter bubble means that we can stay more sustainable in re-wearing the same jumper we found on a TP night out, but it means we miss out on the fun and creativity of switching up our style and trying new things out. So, if you are sick of wearing the same formula of clothes to the library or want to switch up that old Zara top you wear every night out, here are my suggestions to spice up your wardrobe for 2024.
Get ready to trade in your tired North Face Puffer, the fur coat is back in. Last year brought with it both a dismissal of the clean girl and a revival of the girl that admired the chaos of 2000s supermodels, the messiness of doing things for the plot and the maximalist fashion of Bratz dolls. As we enter 2024, this collective lust for girlish chaos has not left our system. The fur coat is the perfect addition to the messy girl’s wardrobe; it oozes decadence and femininity without being too prim and proper. Think of Kate Moss in a fur coat with smudged eyeliner leaving a club — this is the fur coat energy we are craving this year. There are a lot of opportunities to be sustainable with this item in looking at secondhand coats on Vinted, in charity shops or in local vintage shops like The Real McCoy on Fore Street or Sobeys on Gandy Street. And, for vegans/ vegetarians who are uncomfortable with the prospect of buying fur, there are plenty of faux fur coats that can be sourced.
The fur coat is the perfect addition to the messy girl’s wardrobe; it oozes decadence and femininity without being too prim and proper
Leopard/ Cheetah Print
Before you think about it: no, I am not expecting to see a flock of Kat Slaters or Pat Butchers around campus. I agree that the pattern, when used overzealously, can come across gaudy and visually overwhelming. However, in small doses the pattern can be very flattering. In fact, the print can be used as a nice neutral complement to any ensemble. The best way the pattern can be used, in my eyes, would be a bold statement in a plain outfit, or a barely-there accent to an already loud outfit. For daytime, a leopard print jacket with a plain tee and some dark denim jeans seems perfect. Or if you want to incorporate it less and have the cash to spend, consider the iconic Wales Bonner x Adidas ‘Leopard Pony’ sambas. For those with less money to spend (most of us as university students) consider revamping the bows we saw last year by purchasing leopard print ribbon to tie in your hair. For a night out, a leopard print mesh top with jeans with a dark lip would be GORGEOUS.
90s office core has been in for a while now, but I see it really booming this year. The desire for classics that you can use in multiple ways and keep in your wardrobe forever will be answered by this investment in cute, trendy office staples. Suit trousers, cute office skirts, waistcoats, matching co-ords, mini glasses — they are all very versatile and the key to a capsule wardrobe. Think Rachel from Friends working for Ralph Lauren, able to serve full looks whilst being a corporate icon. The functionality of this clothing whilst making you feel somewhat put together is key.
For the girls who aren’t quite as comfortable with leopard print, rest assured a different pattern will be available to you. The obsession with girlhood, lace, and bows in 2023 seem to make a natural progression in gingham — the pattern we wore as summer dresses in primary school. With brands like Versace in their SS24 show alongside Peachy Den signaling a revival of the pattern alongside Margot Robbie’s iconic dress in Barbie, it is undeniable that it would be brought back to the forefronts of our minds. I see gingham working similarly to leopard print in that it will become both a new neutral in the form of the oversized hair scrunchies that we have already seen, and a statement in the quilted jackets that made a brief appearance last spring. In summer, I am anticipating the pattern to be reworked into more suitable, mature summer dresses than those we wore in our primary school days.
I see gingham working similarly to leopard print in that it will become both a new neutral in the form of the oversized hair scrunchies that we have already seen, and a statement in the quilted jackets that made a brief appearance last spring
Last year when we saw girls strutting in Miu-Miu micro skirts, Bella Hadid inspired boxer Shorts, bloomer pants and tutus with football tops in the name of ‘blokecore’ or ‘bloquette’. I believe that the only natural next step is to graduate from these items and return to the tighter mini-shorts. With many arguing 2024 to be the new 2014, the mini shorts seem to be just on time in terms of this revival of 2014 grunge. Whilst I believe 2024 will revamp the mini short with more sophistication and femininity, in lines with our obsession with ‘girl’, we cannot forget the roots of the mini short in the likes of Alexa Chung. New artists like Sabrina Carpenter and her iconic stage outfits have been hinting at this shift to the mini pants, and Kendall Jenner’s scandalous tights and briefs she wore in November last year only heighten this notion that the mini shorts will return.
With the release of Saltburn ( and the capacity it gave us to admire Jacob Elordi’s more casual style at Oxford where he adorns many a polo shirt) we can only assume that many will follow in this style direction. Prada’s SS24 show alongside Miu Miu and The Row signal this transition from the football top that we adored in the summer of 2023 to the polo shirt. Still in keeping with sportswear being adopted by the cultural mainstream, the polo shirt will act as a beach cover up, or a city break statement.
Prada’s SS24 show alongside Miu Miu and The Row signal this transition from the football top that we adored in the summer of 2023 to the polo shirt.
Celebrities like Hailey Bieber, Lydia Butler and Taylor Hill inspired many onlookers to partake in the great chop of 2023. Whilst these influencers suit short hair incredibly well due to their defined features, many of those influenced fell victims to their drastic haircuts (myself included). And so, I have a feeling that I won’t be alone in trying to grow my hair out. In fact, I feel that there will be many worshipping almost unhealthily long hair in 2024. With the boom of sales in Rosemary hair oil and the obsession with scalp massaging to stimulate growth and hair health, I imagine that long hair will be trending this year. After Birkin’s death in the latter half of last year, pictures of her in her youth with her long natural hair circulated, and I feel that this will be the inspiration for many in their efforts to lengthen and strengthen their locks.