Graduate School in Style feat. Ryan Oozeer
March 20th, 2011
Student’s aren’t expected to be fashionable. Inexperience, budget constraints, pressure to “fit in”, etc. When you’re mature, established and back to school, however, those college hoodies and trashed runners don’t seem as appropriate.
Graduate school is an interesting scene because students often look lost somewhere between looking like a “student” and looking like a “grown up” (think business suits with cross-trainers or backpacks with loafers).
“The trick is to find the appropriate middle ground between looking put-together & presentable as well as casual & laid back. You don’t want to look like your taking yourself too seriously (think full suit and tie), but you also don’t want to look like you just finished football practice (think baseball cap and sweats).”
Let me take a minute to reintroduce Ryan Oozeer. He’s one of the most stylish guys I know and my best friend since the 9th grade, was my first ever fashion influence – the one who taught me what it meant to be “stylish”. Back in the day when I was begging for video games on my birthdays, Ryan was collecting sneakers, denim and accessories.
Here, Ryan takes us to school in style for five days.
1. Meeting with Professor
“No matter how nice your snorkel (parka) is, wearing it everyday gets boring. In my opinion, a more stylish and expressive way to avoid Toronto’s cold weather is to use a denim jacket as a layer. It’s fitted and has a high armhole so it fits comfortably under a number of my jackets. Together these are as warm as a big winter coat, but more practical because you can add/remove layers throughout the day if you get warm or cool.”
“Whenever I have a meeting with a professor I try to wear a shirt and tie. It always leaves a good impression, not to mention it’s the perfect accent to complete even a smart casual look”.
Bonus Tip: This outfit has a number of layers but doesn’t look “busy” or “distarcting” because the color palette is all neutral and versatile (Navy, Grey & Brown).
2. Class All Day
“I wore these white jeans in my prior feature on Articles of Style.com, but that was mid-summer. Here I’m styling them much differently for winter. Before I buy an item I always consider it’s versatility and how much wear I will get out of it. While some guys probably wouldn’t get much wear out of white denim, I wear these all summer and also get a kick out of the look my old-school professor’s face when I stumble into class wearing these in early March.”
Bonus Tip: Grey is a very underrated (and versatile) color for leather.
Bonus Tip: Fair Isle looks less country and more city when it’s knit in grey/black/navy
“I enjoy the lack of pretentiousness in current menswear trends. It’s cool to wear your clothes beat-up (raw denim and waxed cotton, for example). I love the worry-free feeling of throwing on my favourite pair of jeans and a sturdy jacket knowing that they are only going to look better the more I wear them.”
Bonus Tip: For a all the pedestrian commuters, don’t underestimate the value of a hat, scarf and gloves. Pair them with a (more stylish) mid-weight jacket and a couple layers rather than an overwhelming parka.
Bonus Tip II: “With my hair short again, I’m wearing hats more often since there’s no worries about hat head when I get to class.”
4. Class -> Work -> Out
“I only like getting dressed once per day. Some days, though, I go straight from school to work, to the gym and then out. In these cases, I try to incorporate a tie in a casual way. Pairing it with comfy knits makes it look not too stuffy for the classroom nor too informal for work and/or an upscale nightlife spot.”
“On days when I’m only going to class and back home, I usually carry canvas tote (see next pic). On days when I have to run from one place to the next, however, I usually go with a duffle. It fits my books, laptop, gym clothes and toiletry bag”.
Bonus Tip: Layering knits is easy (and awesome). Just layer heavier towards the outside.
5. Weekend Getaway
“A down vest is a great piece to transition between seasons, although it can also be layered under a peacoat or tweed blazer during colder months. The weather is slowly getting warmer in Toronto and I am back to wearing my down vest the way I like it most – over a flannel shirt.”
“I cannot say enough about the beans boots. Hoping off the subway, stomping through snow banks or rain puddles and getting to class comfortably and dry is a breeze in these. They’re a classic design that is inexpensive, comfortable and durable. It’s a no brainer.”
Bonus Tip: As we’ve seen before (here), Ryan appreciates the classics. The down vest and the Bean boots aren’t going anywhere for a long time.
In addition to finishing his graduate degree at the University of Toronto, Ryan just began interning at Garrison Bespoke on Wellington Street and now, finally (after trying to convince him for quite some time), Ryan has decided to begin taking personal shopping/styling appointments in the greater Toronto area. If you are interested, you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for reading and special thanks to Ryan for participating!
Yours in style,
Photography by Marwan Helal.