Campus Style Watch: A Formula For Fashion

by Eleya Raim – Horizon Features Editor

Marissa King models one of her famous A-line skirt ensembles, which she chooses for versatility and to save time every morning.
Photo by Eleya Raim

Teacher:  Marissa King

Subjects:  Education and Writing

The Look:  Marissa King is modeling a black, pleated, A-line skirt (her signature piece), checkered button down, and red pumps.  Tying this look together with one of her favorite hairstyles, a classic bun, this style-savvy writing and education teacher is ready to take on her day with energy and a smile.  She does all of this while, as stated in her introduction to education class on the 21st of January, “looking like a boss”.

Why this outfit?  “I don’t have great style but I am efficient. I have a uniform (A-line skirt + shirt + wedges + hair in bun = ready) that revolves around a specific color palette with neutrals. It might not be exciting but giiiiiiirl, I can get ready in a hustle and still be polished enough for work. Most of my clothes match with almost everything else.”

What does this ensemble say about you as a person and your sense of style?  “It’s not a secret that students judge their professors at least a little by what they wear but Hesston College is a little too relaxed for suits every day. I take my work seriously so I hope my clothes say that I cared enough not to wear sweats but don’t distract from my main job: to engage students in serious learning.”

Favorite thing about this look?  “It’s easy. I might change out my categories by season (sweaters instead of T’s) but the basic formula remains the same.”

What would you call your personal style?  “Simple with a side of polished prep.”

Why have you chosen the A-line skirt as one of your signature pieces and when did you start this personal trend?  “I spend too much time trying to think about how to be more efficient in my work and I probably apply that to my personal life a little too often. (Anyone who has eaten lunch with me probably knows that I make salads following a formula so I don’t have to make too many choices.) In Barry Schwartz’s book The Paradox of Choice, he describes the way that life has thrown us so many choices in this age of personalization. Instead of turning on the radio, we choose from apps and streaming services before we even start to make choices about what kinds of music we want. As a result, the time we spend making simple choices takes away from more productive activities like reading.

While I’m not willing to wear the exact same thing every day, I limit the choices I have to make by always wearing an A-line skirt. I don’t even consider buying something else so shopping is way easier. Since I know it works for me, I make fewer bad purchases. I can still keep it fresh with shirt style, skirt color, or bright shoes but I’ve quickly limited my choices to something I know will be comfortable, easily transition to a variety of settings, and have pockets for the wipe-board markers that never seem to be in our classrooms.”

Marissa King’s fashion formula has drawn followers, and look-a-likes. Photo by Eleya Raim


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