I’ve always been a fan of dressing like a school girl and it seems like it’s one of those looks that never goes out of style, that you can tailor to fit your own personal style, and wear as casual or formal as you like. That being said, there’s a fine line between preppy and poorly dressed when it comes to this style and it’s for that reason that I decided to put down the guidelines for how to rock this style without looking like a 12 year old Catholic schoolgirl. Unless you’re going for that look, then by all means proceed. For everyone else, check below for some tips on how to make the schoolgirl look work for you and not against you.
How to Dress Like A School Girl Without Looking Like A 12 Year Old
- Alice+Olivia Fitted Collar Sweatr
- Band of Outsiders Pique Cropped Sleeve Shirt
- Rochas Knit Short Sleeve Top
- Band of Outsiders Knit Top with Shirt Collar
- Zoe Karssen Sweater with Love Is Everything Print
- 3.1 Philip Lim Cable Knit Zip Pullover
- Equipment Roland Crew Neck Sweater
School Girl Staples
The best staples to any schoolgirl outfit (uniform, if you will) is a properly collegiate top. This includes structured button down shirts and blouses, collared sweaters, collared polo shirts, and blazers, of course. Blazers can make nearly any top look a little more scholarly which is really the look you’re going for.
A unique top or blazer can make you look more fashion forward than your average schoolgirl and that’s what gives the look a lot more polish. If you want to look more mature, then pairing a blazer with pants, jeans or slacks instead of the traditional skirt is the perfect way to do that.
- Marc by Marc Jacobs Eva Skirt
- Jonathan Simkhai Ribbed Knit Flared Skirt
- Alice+Olivia Kimbra Drop Waist Skirt
- Glamorous Textured Jersey Box Pleat Skirt
Knee High Socks:
As I was saying, you can go with pants if you want a more chic or mature look, but if you want the typical schoolgirl look with a bit more attitude, then pleated, plaid (tartan or check), or plain black, navy, or grey skirts are all great choices. Also, you’ll want to pair up any schoolgirl outfit with a chunky style shoe.
For more mature looks, go for a chunky heel or even ankle boots. You could layer knee socks and knee or combat boots, if you want to make the look a bit sexier or even give it a punky edge. Otherwise, stick to chunky flats, loafers or low strappy heels for a more traditional look.
- Olivia Burton Big Dial Rose Gold Bracelet Watch
- Marc By Marc Jacobs Baker Mini Silver Watch
- Marc By Marc Jacobs Truman Rose Gold Watch
- Olivia Burton Big Dial Navy Watch With Rose Gold Face
- Lavish Alice Structured Skater Dress With Contrast Collar
- Band of Outsiders Sleeveless Shirtdress with Contrast Collar
- Lavish Alice Structured Playsuit with Contrast Collar
- Stella McCartney Oversized Square Glasses
- Stella McCartney Tortoiseshell Glasses
- Elizabeth and James Spring Glasses
If you prefer to keep your schoolgirl look really simple, opting for a button down shirtdress, peter pan collar or traditional collared dress, or even plaid (check/tartan) is the perfect simple choice. You can even find structured rompers that will give a similar effect without having to actually wear a dress for those who aren’t into wearing dresses. Must-have accessories are really up to you, but the simplest options include a nice polished looking watch or bracelet and a pair of studious looking glasses.
Glasses add to the supposed “nerd factor” which I find kind of dumb, unless you actually wear glasses, but hey, to each their own. I think I’m just jaded because I actually need my glasses for sight not fashion so don’t mind me. Other fun accessories include bow neck ties (for a more Japanese schoolgirl look), longer business style neck ties, suspenders,
Schoolgirl Style Inspiration from Film + TV
Gossip Girls certainly take the cake for sexiest schoolgirl looks around and I love that they’ve varied the looks from character to character which gives them their own personality while staying within the schoolgirl uniform style requirements. Personally, I think the beauty choices are really uninspired, but whatever.
Kathryn from Cruel Intentions has amazing style, in general, but I really love the “east coast rich private boarding school” uniforms with their coat of arms, sweaters and plaid skirts.
Jenny in An Education gives the British schoolgirl a really awesome makeover. I’m not sure how this look has changed throughout the years in the UK, but I love the way they’ve done it in this film. It seems like Brit schoolgirls have a lot more grey influence whereas American schoolgirls tend to look really navy blue heavy. I love that they tastefully mixed tartan/check/plaid with stripes. It’s so effortless.
The full uniforms are full-on dark grey with the whole shebang: neck tie, grey vest and school seal emblazoned blazer.
Despite the fact that these uniforms are pretty cheesy, I still think they’re unique in their own right and certainly a lot more realistic than other films with their below-the-knee skirts. Also, they’re a bit brighter than other uniforms with light blue being a constant throughout.
The girls from the Craft are probably my favorite schoolgirls for their gothic/punk inspired uniforms. I love that everything is a little more intense and with 90’s fashion coming back around in recent years, these are a great place to look for inspiration!
At the end of the day, these are just guidelines and rules are made to be broken. I definitely recommend playing around with different colors, textures, and cuts to figure out what looks best on you and suits your personal style. I think you can also take a simple schoolgirl outfit that looks otherwise typical and make it a lot more unique with your own accessories and makeup. These will change the overall look entirely and make it more yours which is what every outfit should do ultimately.
What Do You Think of Schoolgirl Style?
Tired or Awesome?
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