North Dakota Fashion

What’s hot in fashion in this cold state

Flickr | Photo Courtesy
North Dakota still rocks a pretty solid bedazzling game.

Fargo is notorious for many things: long and miserable winters, football, beer and following trends about two years after it hits the rest of the country. The latter point is certainly true when it comes to fashion. People in Fargo seem to dress to the beat of their own drummer.

While there’s certainly no problem dressing in what makes you feel confident in, it’s easy to see many people falling into one of several fashion categories. Mind you, these are largely generalized and say more about the group of people as a whole than the individual. However, it’s my guess that each person will be able to look at this article and then their closet and say, “Yep, that category definitely describes me.”

Midwest Born and Raised

People in this category are often the small-towners, the kids who grew up on farms and in houses on gravel roads. Cowboy boots are not just for working, they are a fashion statement in their own right. These boots have seen the fields, but they’re also perfect for Gate City Auditorium, walking to the Wellness Center, or just going out on the town.

Another staple for this group involves the always-detailed jean pocket. Whether it’s bedazzled or it’s embroidered, a jean pocket without any stitching or flare is a waste of space. These jeans are always mid-to-low rise and they are the mullet of pants: business in the front, party pockets in the back.

For the male members of this group, the belt buckle is always a focal point. You know the saying, “The bigger the belt buckle…” But in all seriousness, these guys pull off big pieces that put those itty-bitty Gucci belts to shame, they’re styling.

Come wintertime, the hunting jackets, specifically the Arctic Cat jackets, come out. Name brands aren’t small little labels on the inside of the coat, they’re marked in big bold lettering across your chest.

And of course, how could I forget the number one staple: the baseball cap. Whether it’s big and tall or detailed with a bit of mesh, every member of the ‘Midwest Born and Raised’ group must have a go-to hat.

Tik Tok Famous

One day you’ve never heard of Carhartt, and the next, this group of people is wearing Carhartt beanies ever-so-perfectly upon the top of their heads that one must wonder: “What’s the point of a hat when it doesn’t even cover your ears?”

The Tik Tok Famous students are on top of a trend and over that same trend before the general public has even noticed the change. They’re the black-van-wearing, eyebrow-slit-having, Fjallraven-toting style icons the internet has become expedient at producing. 

They’ve got a Patagonia sweater for every hammocking Instagram picture, and a lazy-looking but carefully cultivated set of Adidas-wear for that casual “I woke up like this” look. Their mom jeans have hand-made slits down the legs, and if they didn’t take a picture in it, did they even get dressed today?

Also, if you’re wondering why every store now sells four different types of jean jackets, this is the group to answer for.

The Ironic Hipster

This group is made up of the always cool and consistently effortless. They own two pairs of shoes, and they’re both Doc Martens, and under those black leather boots are a pair of Van Gogh socks.

Their pants are thrifted, and yes, they did alter them all by themselves, Karen. They know how to mix a pattern, not because the clashing polka dots and stripes look good, but because they have the confidence to pull it off. 

They’ve got big funky earrings and a fake pair of glasses from Amazon that they insist are blue-light-blocking. Every t-shirt they own has a witty-saying on it, and at least four of them are cat-themed.

With rings on every finger and enough 80s sweaters to dress the entire cast of “Stranger Things” these people have a vibe everyone wants in on. 

The Dude

Everyone knows a “dude,” and even if you don’t, you see them every day. Their wardrobe consists of twelve pairs of the same blue jeans: high-waisted, straight cut, without a single tear or extra button.

The rest of their closet consists of NDSU sweatshirts. You may think they’re wearing the same green NDSU sweatshirt every day, but as you’ll come to find out, they actually own five nearly identical sweatshirts with a different day of the week written in on the collar.

Each of these dudes owns a variation of Nike sneakers. Maybe they have black with blue details, or blue with black details, or if they’re feeling really adventurous, all black or all blue.

If you had all of these dudes put their backpacks in a pile in the middle of the Fargodome, it would take a few hours to sort everyone’s out, as they all own the same black, Target-bought backpack that they’ve had since their freshman year of high school.

It may be easy to criticize these dudes, but while you were picking out your outfit this morning, they were throwing on Monday sweatshirt and a fresh pair of their red flannel-patterned Hanes and getting ready in 30 seconds flat.

Wear What You Want

Maybe none of these groups really fits you, and maybe they do and you’re wondering what’s so wrong about that, and the answer is absolutely nothing. The beauty of fashion in Fargo is that even if it is a few years behind, there are groups of people here all enjoying similar trends and venturing out into things that are their own.

You may rock a big belt buckle and a pair of Doc Martens. You may be able to pull off a hipster pair of specs with an NDSU sweatshirt. For those of you with these gifts: more power to you.

Fashion allows us to express our personalities visually to others before even talking to them, and, of course, it allows us to group ourselves into these caricatures of fashion cliques where we can simultaneously fit in and poke a little fun at ourselves.

Leave a Reply