How to Create a Transition Wardrobe | Redbrick | University of Birmingham

How to Create a Transition Wardrobe

Life&Style writer Madeleine Bourne gives us her advice on how to create a wardrobe that will keep you going through Britain's unpredictable weather

As I’m writing this I am thinking back to what was supposedly the first day of spring. I was facing a large window in the library. Outside, the clouds were looking pretty bleak, it was pouring down with rain and my umbrella was turned inside out by whichever Grandmotherly-named storm decided to hit us. Just the week before, I was rocking skin tights on campus, as fellow students chilled on the grass and Old Joe finally was set to a backdrop of sunshine that made the university actually look like the prospectus pictures. Understand why us Brits need a transitional wardrobe yet? I thought so.

There’s so much more to fashion than the superficial: the clothes you wear are an outward expression of the person you are. Wearing something you feel confident in can make your day just that little bit better. If you’re feeling positive in yourself, you’ll outwardly radiate positivity. And for a university with a diverse body of talented students, rocking up to a seminar feeling motivated for the day ahead will keep you in the right mindset.

And as for being skint students, there’s two problems created here. 1) It’s virtually impossible to buy into trend-based pieces, due to the fact that they’re only going to be fashionable for one season, and then look outdated the next. 2) Investing in a super summery wardrobe is not a good use of your student loan – it’s time we stuck to pieces that’ll be versatile across all seasons.

Here’s three ways to nail that transitional wardrobe:

Dip into the trends

Three big trends for S/S 17: ruffles, mesh and all things pink. This look combines all three and won’t break your bank. Cheap and cheerful, this pink, frilled mesh top from New Look is a style steal at a mere £12.99. Pop on a pink cami underneath for the day; break out your best bralette for the evening. Paired with a bralette underneath, you can tone down the twee-factor. With a sock and sandal combo, you’ve got yourself an outfit that reaches around 10 on the twee scale and it’s fabulous. Grab the top in a slightly larger size to compliment the elegant ruffle sleeve detailing.

Referring back to the twee-yet-amazing socks and sandals combo, they tick off that pink trend whilst allowing you to live your inner Disney princess dreams. These beauties are from River Island and work in winter for the festive season (glitter, hello?!), they work just as well with the nearing spring (socks and sandals and all that) and they’ll look killer with a tan on holiday in summer.

Pieces that cross the seasons

This beautiful A-line number is in the sale recently: for £14 in New Look, it’s a bargain. A leather

skirt will (literally) last you for life. You’ve got winter covered with the warm burgundy tone and it’s perfect for chillier spring days (aka every single day in spring) with the adorable floral stitching. Crochet is something that suits spring and summer perfectly well, but due to the knitted material, it’s warm enough to get you through that winter-spring transition.

The stand-out outfit that’ll go from day, to night

This dress of dreams is from Topshop. Although a little on the pricier side at £48, your bank account may not be all that happy when first purchased, but Santander will be thanking you in the long run. It’s trend-based with the ruffle detailing, leopard print will never go out of fashion and it can be dressed down with Chelsea boots for the day, but dressed up with heels for a night out. You’ll never need another dress. Investments pay off, people.

On that same occasion in the library on the first day of spring, I was still facing that same window. But outside, the clouds disappeared and the sky decided to turn baby blue and I thought I could see the sun peeking behind Old Joe, but that might have just been my heavy optimism. As I got ready to leave the library, I kept my umbrella firmly clutched at my side...

English & Creative Writing student | Writer for Redbrick & The Tab | Host of The Request Show at BurnFM | Absolutely awful at writing remotely interesting bios (@maddiemae_xo)


4th April 2017 at 9:00 am

Last Updated

3rd April 2017 at 9:18 pm

Images from

ensia and Madeleine Bourne