This is a guest blog submitted by alfaromeoconvertible

Chicago is stone-cold outside. I find myself faced with a strange challenge in getting dressed for the cold; it's freezing outside, but inside it's warm, often hot. How on earth is one supposed to look decently put together in this kind of environment? I don't see too many inspiring examples here around campus, nor do I find much help in glancing at the displays of the major retail stores. It seems to me that the clothing they are pushing on us is far, far too skimpy for the winter. 

My criteria for a functional winter costume:

1. Warm. Can insulate from the cold and break against the biting winds of Lake Michigan.

2. Not bulky. Comfortable and permitting easy movement, accommodating the carrying of scholastic parcels and computer bundles.

3. Adaptable to outdoors and indoors environments.

Major problems with everyday items of clothing:

- Denim or corduroy trousers break wind pretty well, but one layer is not enough.

- Fitted coats aren't roomy enough to go over the voluminous puffiness of sweaters.

- Skirts are too short (I'd like something down to my ankles) and don't have enough warm layers/linings. Where are all the petticoats when we need them?

What I'd like to do is figure out a few basic uniforms, and then just wear different versions of that everyday. I don't mind looking a bit outlandish, as long as I am warm and it looks good.

How can I create a 'uniform' that is both warm and elegant?