Print Edition: November 27, 2013
There’s an age-old question that plagues both genders when it comes to fashion: how can you be practical and stylish at the same time? Is it even possible?
It’s much easier to look good in the summer without sacrificing comfort or health. But as we move into December, we’ll encounter all sorts of horrible weather, from sleet to snow. We would like to not only dress to keep warm and dry, but also avoid looking like an overstuffed Teletubby. Here are a few tips and tricks I’ve learned from having braved both the dry snowfalls of dead-of-winter Saskatchewan and the torrential rain of British Columbia.
Keeping your feet dry
We’re all familiar with the layout of UFV’s Abbotsford campus and its need for spacious green lawns between buildings. In summer, the green becomes a popular hangout for students to catch some rays and warm up before their next class. In winter, it tests our endurance, and our unwavering love of coffee (do you really want to make the voyage outside in the storm for a Tim Horton’s double-double?).
Most jackets are waterproof, but it’s difficult to find an inexpensive pair of boots that won’t let the water in by the end of the day. Double socks work for short trips. The water might only soak the first layer, leaving your feet warm and dry. However, an even better idea, especially if you walk to school, might only cost you ten cents. Two shopping bags. That’s right. Put your socks on as usual, and then line your boots with plastic. Your feet will stay dry and warm. Just remember to tuck the bag down into your boots, so you don’t have the handles flapping out of the top.
Keeping warm without dressing bulkily
Jeans are not winter-wear. In Saskatchewan, you can buy jeans with fleece liner. In BC, you just have to suck it up and endure. For most people, if your legs are cold, it doesn’t matter how warm your upper body is, you won’t be able to shake that chill. But not to worry! There’s a secret that will let you wear your favourite pair of jeans even in the dead of winter.
Long underwear. Thermal is best. It’s thin and sells for under $10 a pair. You can wear it like tights underneath your jeans, and it doesn’t crease your butt or feel bunched up near the waist, so you can still wear your hip-huggers. If you can tuck them into your socks, your ankles will also stay warm. For those with arthritis in the knees, it helps keep the cold out of the bones.
If you don’t have $10 to spend, tights work just the same. They might feel a little thicker on the legs, but they’ll keep you warmer than just jeans.