‘Tis the season to be balling! Here’s what your Exeter ball outfit says about you

Hate to break it to you, but you’re getting that Armani suit covered in Venoms

We’ve approached the end of term one and amidst all the festivities (and the copious amounts of January deadlines), the much adored Christmas ball season has officially ended. Multiple societies hosted their own versions of Christmas dinners/formals/balls, with everyone dressing to the nines and bringing out the fancy attire we’d all stuffed to the backs of our closets (or if you’re a broke girly like me, prayed to the Vinted gods that someone was selling an acceptable looking black tie dress for cheap). So, whether you bedazzled yourself in the best garments Urban Outfitters had to offer, reused that old prom dress of yours (we love a sustainable queen), or searched every charity shop high and low for a respectable find, here’s what your festive fit of choice says about you!

Your old prom dress/suit

Contrary to most of the Exetah population, you refuse to succumb to the magnetic pull of capitalism. You live life to your own tune and can probably be found silently vibing in an independent cafe sipping on an oat chai latte. Whilst everyone else is going feral over grabbing a TP Wednesday ticket, you’re probably knee deep in your latest crochet project and rewatching an old comfort film like the peaceful queen you are. You’re the wholesome sweetheart of the group who radiates golden retriever energy. Loyal at heart and easily attached to the people in your life, every inch of your uni wall is plastered with your never ending collection of random polaroids (don’t worry though, we won’t tell your landlord).

Last minute wardrobe find

Procrastination is a way of life for you, so you can probably be found sobbing in your flat kitchen at 2am because you’re not even halfway through finishing that essay that’s due in for midday which – much to your sheer horror – is worth almost half your grade. Like all of your deadlines, you’ve probably left your outfit planning to mere hours before the event (not even next day delivery can save you now). Amazon Prime is of no use to you and you’re left kneeling amidst a tsunami of scattered clothing which you’ve been rummaging through for the past hour (some of which you might have forgot you owned). You’re nearly at your wit’s end and cursing yourself for not ordering in advance, until you find a decent enough looking outfit that you’ve worn everywhere at this point due to this same exact reason.

You’ll still miraculously be able to pull it off though, just like with your grades when you somehow end up getting a 2:1 even after handing in the most last minute, caffeine fuelled, delirious submission. Everyone in your course envies you for it, and all your friends have to remind you eight times about a plan you’ve made together. You also probably spend every weekend sleeping in ‘til 2pm and have breakfast at dinner time most days, but isn’t that just the agreed upon uni diet? 

Something you borrowed from your bestie

Congratulations, that sleek black dress in your bestie’s wardrobe that you’ve been eyeing up all year is finally yours! You’re probably clueless when it comes to the world of fashion. So much so that all your mates have to congregate in your room before you set off for pres, just to assemble something outfit-looking from all the random stuff that’s in your drawer. This proves to be a fruitless effort, resulting in someone caving and offering up something of their own instead (provided that you don’t accidentally spill red wine all over it again).

You probably have a head in the clouds attitude and live a life of spontaneity. Plans and schedules were never your thing, but somehow you still make it work in your own scattered way. Everyone secretly adores your clumsy aloofness and the constant mothering from everyone is just affection in disguise (just try not to trip over your own feet on the Fever dancefloor).

Something out of a thrift store

First of all, I applaud your ability to sift through all the countless bland cardigans and the bottomless piles of grey to genuinely find some of the most iconic pieces of clothing, and all for a mere fraction of the price. You probably grew up on Boxing Day sales and aim to scoop up the cheapest clothing possible (cozzy livs though, amirite?) You’re probably that quirky friend out of the group who’s definitely tried to convert everyone to veganism at some point. You bring all the eco, plant girl vibes to the table and everyone loves you for it – please, reveal your secrets and share some of your charity shop luck for the rest of us, we’re begging!

A suit and bowtie

“Rahhh, this suit is custom made Ralph Lauren so don’t put your greasy fingers anywhere near it”: a paraphrased quote that has definitely been heard on the way to a formal from Holland Hall. Whilst not every student has purchased their suit with the help of daddy’s money, the mere prospect of tainting their linen suit jackets would send a large majority of Rugby lads shrieking back to their halls – that is until they hit TP for afters and get it drenched in Venoms.

If you wore a suit to your winter ball, you probably spend your time getting riotously drunk at sports pubs, annoying every local in your vicinity whilst you bellow out some profanity infused chant. You probably are involved in the AU in some way and will defend your club’s bizarre initiation rituals to the death (bonus points if you allow yourself to be persuaded into a mullet or wear tweed unironically to spend an evening at the races). You’re posh at heart and have a boisterous soul, and whilst that mix might not earn you brownie points with the locals, you have earned yourself a reputation amongst the students: And whether that’s a good or bad thing, only you can be the judge of that. 

Floor length gown

You were born to be the main character and girly, the stage is all yours! Everyone else around you is a side character in the Emmy nominated series that is your life. You’re mostly just doing things “for the plot” and turn everything into an epic adventure. You’re the life of every party and the gravitational centre of your friend group. You guys are probably referred to by other circles as “y/n and co”. You have the most infectious laugh and know how to work every room you’re in. People either love you or envy you for your confidence and effortless charm, but you were never one to trouble yourself over the likes of petty haters. Honestly, at this point, even social anxiety is scared of you. 

Mini dress

You’re a Barbie girl living in your Barbie world. You’re a textbook optimist but down to earth enough to keep it real with the girlies, with the exception of some delulu advice about everyone’s situationships (but hey, sometimes being delulu is the solulu). Everyone turns to you when they’re craving their next spicy gossip session and you’re always a hoot to have around during pres.

In contrast to your carefree nature, however, you also have a deeper side to you. You’ve always been interested in the inner workings of people’s brains and what makes them tick, and as such (on the occasions when you’re not feeding into everyone’s delusions) you can give some of the most helpful advice. You have more depth than meets the eye and deep down you still haven’t grown out of that inner dreamer, but growing up is overrated anyway so keep listening to those Lana Del Rey playlists and keep picturing that alternate reality where you ride off into the sunset with Ryan Gosling. 

Top and a skirt/trousers

This might seem like a bit of a cop-out but you’ve got the art of minimalism down to a T. You are a wise, old soul, who has well outgrown your days of being a silly fresh and has somehow pioneered a way of dressing for both comfort AND style. You’re probably cackling away at the poor sods who’ve spent all night in agony trying to eat their meal whilst being stuffed in a corset, thinking to yourself: “That could never be me.” Whilst the food is cleared away and the drinking commences, you’re probably the first on that dance floor shaking your stuff and breaking a sweat.

Just like your outfit choices, you bring an aura of efficiency into every aspect of your life. You’re painfully on time to lectures and would never burst in 20 minutes late from being in the Pret queue. You’re the friend that no one hears of during exam season and probably spend your free hours whiling away in the Forum Library, revising for your next assessment that’s due an entire month later. People famously rely on you for literally everything, from seminar notes to deadline dates, down to organising the details of a night out. Speaking of which, you’re definitely on at least three different committees for three different societies, and you’re definitely are in charge of planning socials. You’re so put together, until you inevitably burn out (don’t worry, we’ve all been there – crying on the TP bathroom floor is a rite of passage).

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