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How We Do It in Essex: Graduation Preparation

25 Apr


Graduations take place across the calendar but what advice do recent graduates from Essex University have for those who are preparing for their ceremony this season?

When thinking of my graduation, I have always imagined it as a small-scale version of my future wedding day -the preparations, the invitations, the gifts, and of course, the outfit.

 I’m getting ahead of myself, you might say, but for me graduation is a blindingly bright light at the end of a dark dissertation tunnel. While some of my university colleagues can’t see the importance in such an “outdated ceremony [in their words],for me graduation is an  opportunity, an offer  to finally take a break from the weeks spent hidden away from the world, surrounded by a pile of books in the university library.

Claire Winder, who graduated from the University of Essex in 2010, thinks that introductions between your parents and your fellow students’ parents can be a good way to to start the day. ” We all met at the main university square and did mass introductions of colleagues and professors my friends and parents had heard me speaking of but never met.gradd

Like most student traditions, alcohol is an irreplaceable element which  tempts us to get carried away, especially when being in a celebratory mood.

Therefore, it is important to have a big lunch, because “most likely you’ll be drinking from then on” advices the sociology graduate Stella Van.

“Have a big lunch before celebrations,” advises psychology graduate Jade Van Loo, 25, “because most likely you’ll be drinking from then on.” She tells me to allow proud and eager parents to have their moment too – which means preparing for lots of embarrassing photos.

But what should you wear?

“Pick out something conservative but still sassy to wear” warns the 24 Essex UniversityElla Daren. If you want to look like the mature adult you are about to become, but still look stunning and age-appropriate, then an  outfit like this would be absolutely perfect to wear during your graduation ceremony.


This silky  dress is lightweight and won’t look bulky under your robe, but will still look great for any activity you’ll attend after the ceremony. High-heels like these will look great with your robe, (plus they are easier to walk in and a little more dressy than the wedges). Trust me — you’ll be thankful you did once those photos hit Facebook (or, are framed and placed over the fireplace at your parents’ house!).

Despite all the worries and stress and preparations, there is one key advice to remember. As  Essex University graduate. Allen, 27,  says : “Enjoy it. It’s once in a lifetime”.

Slogan T-shirts say it all!

3 Apr

If one piece of clothing epitomizes what fashion means now, it is the slogan T-shirt. Like jeans, little black dresses and miniskirts, the T-shirt is a fashion that goes beyond fashion; it’s a mean of communication, a mean of telling the world what we like or care about.


The first slogan T-shirts were sold in the 60s in a shop of London’s Kings Road set up by Tommy Roberts and Trevor Myles. Later, in the 70s, it was Vivienne Westwood and her partner Malcolm McLaren who made political T-shirts to sell in their shop; they were related to sex and to one of the most popular designs during that time featuring ‘swastika’. The collection was a massive success and was followed up on in subsequent years.


In the 80s, slogan T-shirts reached their saturation point because of Katharine Hamnett. Dressed in a “58% Don’t Want Pershing” – a reference to polls showing public opposition in the United Kingdom against the basing of Pershing missiles in the country- she met with then- Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Hamnett’s designs were copied all over the world and her T-shirts became cultural signposts to the times we lived in.


Nowadays, we can consider T-shirts to be the sartorial representation of how communication has changed. We are no longer interested in listening to received wisdom, but in telling the world what we think. Big brands, of course, utilize a slogan, and many use them on their products and in this case t-shirts such as the slogan ‘Just Do It’ which is a trademark of Nike, or ‘J’adore Dior’.

It was during the first Elizabethan age that Shakespeare said ‘I will wear my heart upon my sleeve for dawns to peck at”. At the end of the second Elizabethan age, the progress culminates in us who wear our brands on our chests instead. Every now and then, we might come across a situation in which the expressions at the T-shirts are giving a real characteristic of ours. So it is imperative to take some time out on deciding the right kind of t-shirt which will go along with your mindset and to give a casual look and also a very comfortable feeling by showing what you are, what you feel, or portray anything you want and bring out your attitude towards life and different perspectives in a stylish and fashionable manner.