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Head Back to School in Style: How to Turn Heads with Bold Patterns and Accessories

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X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @summmms_)

It sure seems like school starts earlier every year. With mid-August upon us, the time to head back to school is right around the corner. While no one wants to cut their summer short and trade the waves and sand for their boring math class, at least you can still have fun with your back to school style.

X shares back to school guide

Here at X, we have you covered with everything from the ideal outfit inspiration to the backpacks and other accessories you should be rocking across campus.

Whether it's high school or college you're heading back to, the whole class is going to have trouble understanding the teacher because all the focus is going to be on you.


THE OUTFITS


X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @_emmachamberlain)

Black and white

To kick things off, head back to school in a black and white ensemble. Choosing to tone down the colors of your clothes will better show off your new kicks and backpack on the first day.

In addition, playing around with black and white allows you to have more fun with textures and patterns, without pieces clashing.

After all, who doesn't like a bold checkered pattern?

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @sxvbi)

Using mostly black and white allows the unique shark design to stand out on these hybrid shorts. In addition, choosing prints with bigger fonts on men's shirts and sweatshirts gives them a crisp finish.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @jazminelucero)

The hottest trend when it comes to black and white clothes is sporting a checkered pattern. Dress codes can be annoying when it comes to the length of your shorts. However, when you throw a checkered pattern on your bicycle shorts, they still come off fashionable and fun instead of looking childish.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @jayalvarrez)
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Another easy way to do a black and white look is to keep your entire outfit black and save the pop of white for your shoes. To keep your shoes looking white throughout the semester, a gentle cleaning kit is necessary.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @summmms_)

Your checkered look doesn't have to just come from your shorts. Stay warm in the fall with a checkered long-sleeve shirt paired with black jeans and matching sneakers. Playing with fun lipstick colors or jewelry will provide the missing pop of color.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @vans)

When it comes to your back to school outfit, every component counts. Don't forget about your socks. Trade in your plain white or black pair for a checkered pattern. Leaving the rest of your clothes simple will draw all the attention to your shoes.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @tanamongeau)

A black and white look doesn't have to mean emulating a checkered flag. Adding a white stripe to black pants makes your legs look longer and leaner. To continue the effect, throw on black shoes with white soles. 

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @dolantwins)

Sitting in a hard desk in classes all day can be uncomfortable so there's no reason to wear clothes that are uncomfortable too. Wearing all-black basics looks clean instead of frumpy. Traditional black and white sneaker styles complete the simple but fresh look.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @alexisren)

A t-shirt dress is a comfortable and cute alternative to rocking jeans all week. When the weather cools down, a knee-high boot gives the look some added edge. For a softer alternative, sliding on knee-high socks comfortably creates the illusion of a tall boot. This look also lets your bright backpack take center stage.


Rainbow stripes and bright colors

One of the great things about heading back to school after summer is the chance to show off the tan you've worked on for the past three months. 

Rainbow stripes and bright colors work well at offsetting your golden bronzed skin and sun-kissed hair.

Playing with multiple colors in your outfit also gives you endless options when it comes to your sneakers. You can match your shoes to one of the colors on your clothes or choose a neutral pair to make your shirt stand out.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @loren)

Rainbow horizontal stripes are bright and draw attention up to your face. This is the perfect opportunity to try out a bright eyeshadow tutorial. Pair a busy top with shorts in one of the lighter tones. They also help play up the lighter pink in the shirt.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @riverviiperi)

Stripes aren't just for girls, guys can rock this style too. Vertical stripes are more masculine and help you look taller. If you're going for a bold pattern and color on top, keep your shorts and shoes in solid neutrals so they don't compete.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @_emmachamberlain)

Choosing to highlight a monochromatic blue look with orange is smart because the two colors are opposites on the color wheel.

X shares back to school guide

The nice color combination also complements your golden tan. When it comes to your shoes, using natural cleaning products preserves their color longer.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @nicolas.garrone)

With a similar color combination for guys, the thick vertical stripes make you look bigger. Just because you're at school doesn't mean you have to be confined to t-shirts. A collared shirt adds some class without looking out of place.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @summmms_)

A rainbow bodysuit is also a comfortable option for school that will keep you cool and able to easily move around. While white shoes complement the look perfectly, you may be scared to wear them at school, where chemistry class and lunch can both get messy. Using a water and stain repellant helps your shoes stay white.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @vans)

While you may be used to keeping blue on your jeans and color on your shirt, switching the two offers an eye-catching look. Mixing tones in your look adds nice color without coming off too bright.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @jazminelucero)

Tie dye shirts are another great way to add color to your wardrobe. You gain extra style points if your tie dye comes as a colorful vintage band tee. This is also a look you can do yourself at home as a fun study break with your friends or roommates.


Cali vibes

California feels like summer all year long. When heading back to school, you can keep summer alive by emulating Cali style.

Effortless, comfortable and classic, throwing Cali vibes into your wardrobe won't leave you disappointed.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @andrehamann)

For men, Californian style is about simple comfort. Gray toned tank tops, dark jeans and black sneakers will show off your blonde highlights and golden tan. And hey, if you're not actually from Cali, we won't tell anyone it's bleached and sprayed on.

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @calledtosurf)

A feminine dress in earthy tones mimics the peacefulness of the beach. Long blonde wavy hair screams Californian girl. Embrace your inner surfer girl and throw on some white sneakers and a shell anklet.


THE BACKPACKS


X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @tanamongeau)

Your back to school style isn't just about your clothes. Your backpack is one accessory you use every day. Luckily, you don't have to limit yourself to one.

Keep reading to check out different backpack styles. Finding a few cheap ones instead of one expensive style gives you more to pair with your various outfits. 

Floral

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @sekitsui_shop)

A floral backpack adds a pretty, soft look to your outfit. This is a good backpack to pair with one of your basic outfits to make it look more girly.

Black and white

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @manteca_shop)

On the other hand, if you already have a lot going on in your outfit, you may want to keep your backpack basic. If you are only buying one backpack this is also the best option because black and white go with everything.

Girly


X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @shoebakery)

If your goal is to make your backpack stand out, this cute unicorn style is a fashionable piece all on its own. 

Nerdy

X shares back to school guide
(Photo via Instagram / @weshopwisely)

Perfect for science class, this galaxy backpack is nerdy chic. Adding this to your collection will truly make your outfit out of this world.

Bold

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @vans)

Perfect to pair with the black and white looks or to match their corresponding color, these bold backpacks will put all the attention on you.


THE ACCESSORIES


 X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @shanedawson)

There are also some essentials you need to succeed this semester. Don't forget to add these necessities to your back to school shopping list.

Pop socket

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @popsockets)

Everyone needs a good back to school selfie for Instagram. That way, even the unlucky classmates who don't have you in class this semester can still see you rocking your back to school outfits. And come on, what's a selfie without having a pop socket to ensure you get the best angle? 

Coffee cup

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @jayalvarrez)

Waking up at 7 am instead of summer's lovely 11 am start is pretty hard. Coffee is a lifesaver, so why not invest in a cute cup you'll see every morning.

Notebooks 

X shares back to school guide

(Photo via Instagram / @shiningthroughsecond)

Like your backpack, notebooks are necessary to succeed in class. Make yours stand out with beachy prints that will have you thinking about your summer adventures. Just don't daydream too much and fall asleep in class!

X shares back to school guide