Vegan Style: Back to School

August 25, 2014
Vegan Style: Back to School

August is the January of academia. Time to renew your style!

Many of us are returning to school in some capacity this fall. Whether you’re a student, a parent of a student, or a teacher, it’s difficult to avoid coming down with a case of back-to-school fever. Although I thought my school days were over after I finished my Master’s, I found myself volunteering to teach a section of freshman writing at the university where my fiancé is a professor.

I think I’m looking forward to it. I’ve taught college composition before, and it was a mostly positive experience. In fact, I was surprised that it went as well as it did! And I kind-of-sort-0f-liked it despite never really getting used to part about public speaking all the time. After a few weeks, you start getting to know students–at least when you’re teaching a class of 25 or smaller like me–and they get to know you. You share a common goal: helping them succeed in the class, whatever that means to you and them. Although I still have my anxieties about teaching, whenever I open my intense instructor’s copy textbook to start planning, I get really excited! I’m taking this as a good sign.

One thing I don’t have mixed feelings about? Back to school style! Buying new pencils and fall clothing in the same shopping trip is a unique pleasure, no? Even when I’m not in school, August feels like a time of renewal. So what if it’s just another month at the office for non-academics? We could all use a style update at the end of summer!

So, my style pupils, take out your notebooks, it’s time to refresh our brains on what makes a stellar back-to-school wardrobe, à la vegan.

Classy, practical shoes. It’s time to tuck your flip-flops and tattered sandals away. Beautiful shoes to match just about any outfit that will also not impede your run (I mean, walk) to the coffee cart are a must. Timeless ballet flats pair well with bare legs or, later in term, cozy tights.

The cutest accessories, like, ever. Planners! Pencil cases! These sweet examples are not the neon plastic stuff of middle school.  Rather, they’re little markers of lighthearted style that will lift your spirits during a drab business or faculty meeting. (Yes, teachers need cute things, too!)

Good hair days. For the past three years, I’ve been trying (with not so great success) to wean myself off of plastic butterfly clips. I don’t mean the cute, pastel ones you see on little girls. I mean the cheap black and brown things that should never leave your bathroom–yet mine do all the time. This school year, I vow to create distance between my leaving-the-house hair and my butterfly clips. Cute hair accessories can only help, right?

A sweet, sassy lip. You don’t need to go all vampy for the classroom–or any daytime event. A fun pink can’t hurt, though! A bright lip and a little mascara can go a long way, especially if you’ve been pulling all-nighters. Aromi makes yummy chemical-free and vegan lipsticks and glosses.

An outfit you can’t wait to wear on the first day. I’m loving full, swingy skirts and simple sweaters this season. There’s something classic about the pair–like school-girl-esque but not in a cliché/creepy way.

The bag to rule them all. Laptop fits? Check. Ipad and textbook fits? Check. Compartment for your favorite lippie and travel perfume? Check. Vegan leather? Check, check, check!

 What’s on your back to school shopping list? 

Also see: Style Inspiration – Nouveau Nineties

How to Update Your Wardrobe

How to Dress Like a Parisienne

Photos:  Alternative Outfitters, Fixfly via Etsy, Symbiosis by Julia via Etsy, Anthropologie,  Urban Outfitters, ASOS, Aromi, Free People.


Peaceful Dumpling Beauty Editor and creator of Bisou du Jour, Mary Hood Luttrell lives with her husband in Corpus Christi, Texas. Mary is a freelance writer and writing and blogging consultant. A lover of whole foods, Mary delights in learning new ways to prepare vegan dishes. Mary also enjoys reading and writing poetry, art journaling, running, and practicing yoga and ballet. Follow Mary on her blog Bisou du Jour, Instagram and Pinterest.


always stay inspired!