Three photos of fashion-forward students around U of O campus
Students had to pull their fall wardrobes out a little earlier this year. Image: Victoria Drybrough/Fulcrum
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U of O students are on top of current trends

A new school year means a lot of things: back to campus, back to classes, back to living with friends, and back-to-school fashion. Fashion has changed a lot in the last few years, with some very clear trends emerging. I took to the University of Ottawa campus during one of the busiest weeks of the year — move-in week — to get a better look.

I wish I could say I did this on purpose, but it just so happened to be cold on the day I went out — so here’s a sneak-peak at what U of O students will be wearing on-campus this fall.


In preparation for Ottawa’s cold winters, U of O students are adding layers under and over their summer outfits to smoothen the transition into the colder season.

Two U of O students seen on campus wearing current fashion trends
Some layering options I saw included button up shirts, flannels, and tee-shirts over hoodies. Victoria Drybrough/Fulcrum

Loose-fitting pants

U of O students are proving that you don’t need to sacrifice comfort for style. I saw a number of students wearing loose-fitting pants — perfect for spending all day in the library.


A return to campus means a return to finding the most practical bag to carry your textbooks. I saw tons of students wearing backpacks made of canvas or leather.

There were also tote bags everywhere. Canvas tote bags have quickly become the most popular option for when you need your hands to be free, but don’t want nor need the bulkiness of a backpack.


A popular item from last fall seems to be making a return this year: the shacket. That’s the combined product of a shirt and jacket, for those of you who haven’t hear the term — keeps you warm, but doesn’t overshadow the outfit underneath like a lot of bulkier coats would.

Three students wearing loose pants with shackets
Some shacket-clad students making their way through campus. Victoria Drybrough/Fulcrum

Bold shoes

If there’s one thing students know how to do, it’s shoes. Fashion and function are, once again, both crucial when it comes to picking the right shoes for the back-to-school season, since students can expect a lot of walking between classes. I saw a lot of classic sneakers, but since this was a cold day with definite fall vibes, I also saw some students pulling out their boots as the perfect cold-weather touch.

U of O student wearing a black hoodie, blue jeans, and shoes that pull together the colours of his outfit.
Students are coordinating the colours in the rest of their outfit to those of their shoes to help pull their whole look together. Victoria Drybrough/Fulcrum

Thank you to the students who agreed to be featured in this article. I’m looking forward to seeing how the trends on campus change as the weather gets colder — before they all get hidden under puffer coats, that is.