your friends with Converse-sneaker lookalike high
socks in hot pink, $6
— School uniforms don’t have to be a drag. Students
are reclaiming their individuality by personalizing
their uniforms with accessories that add flair.
Solberg, a rising sixth-grader in Chicago, wears a
school uniform that requires navy or tan bottoms and
navy, white or light blue tops, but she and her friends
are finding creative ways to let their individuality
make it my own style with crazy headbands and socks, and
shoes," she said.
favorite accessory of Solberg’s is a pair of socks
that look like Converse Chuck Taylor All Star sneakers.
She also wears socks with neon colors or stripes. In the
warmer months, colorful high-top Converse sneakers are a
dress code presents certain restrictions: Jewelry, hats
and hoodie sweatshirts are not allowed, but Solberg does
accessorize with friendship bracelets and headbands. She
prefers headbands made from stretchy materials,
"They’re decorative, like rainbow tie-dye
fabric," she said.
for her other classmates, she notes, "Guys wear
funky shoes, like basketball Nikes (in) neon colors and
Murphy, is a rising eighth-grader at a Chicago school
where the uniform varies by the day. His uniform is
generally a white shirt and blue khakis, but Wednesdays
present the opportunity to add jeans and the school’s
anti-bullying shirt to the dress code. The back of the
purple T-shirt crosses out words suggestive of bullying,
like "horseplay," "fighting,"
"name calling" and "sub tweets" and
instead highlights supportive words, such as
"compliment," "friend" and "upstand."
On Thursdays and Fridays, gym uniforms are permitted.
prefers to accessorize his uniform with a watch,
bracelets and sneakers. He has a growing bracelet
friend gave me a couple of bracelets that I like to wear
on specific days of the week. One of them is brown and
black, one is leather, I have it on right now, and
another one is metal (with a) magnetic clip — it’s
like silver and gold, and the other is a skull bracelet
that’s plain silver and has skeletons on it,"
opts to pair his school’s anti-bullying shirt with
jeans. "I like blue jeans, black jeans, torn-up
jeans." he said.
also deck out their backpacks with buttons and key
chains, sew or press patches onto their jean jackets and
sweaters, wear bandannas, scrunchies, textured tights or
layer band T-shirts under their uniform dress shirts.
Within the bounds of the school dress code, kids are
finding ways to explore their individuality through
their fashion choices.