Fashion at Grinnell is an extension of the freedom, social awareness, and acceptance reflected in college life here. After being at Grinnell for nearly a year, I appreciate not only the way Grinnell students express themselves through fashion, but also the way other students appreciate the message.

I enjoy reading my fellow student’s shirts: “Peace please,” “Remember Virginia Tech,” “Eat locally!” I can discover so much about my peers by noticing a friend is wearing earrings shaped like menorahs, or seeing that another friend is from Ohio because of his Buckeye T-shirts (to which I say, “Go Wolverines!”).

My lovely roommate spends more than an hour and a half getting ready for the day; in contrast, it takes me 15 minutes. Neither of us hears any criticism or admiration for the way we look.

Grinnell’s fashion outlook adds an element of fun to getting dressed. It gives me the confidence to wear whatever I choose (for example, my tiedyed baseball hat) whenever I want. I can put on leather pants for a Friday night, because no one will care.

It also makes dressing up for the numerous costume parties here interesting. Between using the absurd pieces of clothing we all own (whether we admit it or not) and borrowing items from others (“Hey, you know your platform boots you wore that one time? Yeah, can I borrow them for Disco?”), I find piecing together a great costume is easy and enjoyable.

Even though I didn’t come here to show off or improve my sense of fashion, I have borrowed ideas from fellow students. Plenty of people here enjoy looking good and sharing ideas. Fashion at Grinnell is flexible, fun, and interesting. Expressing myself with a sequined shirt one day and with a 5K T-shirt the next is something I appreciate and am grateful for each day.

Elizabeth Pearce '13 is an undeclared major from East Lansing, MI.

Elizabeth Pearce '13...

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