This Is How To Dress For Sorority Recruitment

by Jessica Thomas

If you're anxiously preparing for sorority recruitment this August, you probably have a million things on your to-do list, from polishing up your resume to getting your rec letters in order. One thing that's probably at the forefront of your mind? What to wear to sorority recruitment. If you've been stressing out about it all summer, I'm here to help.

After going through recruitment once as a PNM (potential new member) and three times as a sorority member, I'm pretty well versed in the world of sorority recruitment wardrobes and what works best for the week. I went to school at the University of Missouri, which has a pretty traditional Greek system and does a typical week-long recruitment in August. At Mizzou, the Panhellenic Association provides t-shirts for three of the days of recruitment, so your clothing options are pretty limited for the majority of the week. Two of the days you have free reign over your outfit, but PHA puts together a booklet with outfit guidelines to try and make the process easier. Regardless of how your chosen school sets up recruitment week, there are some basic guidelines that will make the process of choosing your outfit easier.

Here are a few of my favorite tips.

1. On Casual Days, Don't Overthink It

Women's Navy/White Print Short, $17.99,

If your casual days of recruitment are like Mizzou's and you wear a school-provided t-shirt, you're probably stressed about how to stand out from the hundreds of other women going through recruitment. The good news? It really doesn't matter much. Everyone who's on the other side of recruitment is talking to so many people throughout the day that your outfit barely registers — promise. They're way more concerned about the conversation than what you're wearing. Stick to cute and comfortable, like a loose pair of patterned shorts and simple flat sandals.

2. Save The Heels For Pref Day

EMU Australia Myrtle Sandal, $39.95,

At most schools Preference Day (or Pref Day as we called it) is the most formal day and also the most serious. It's the last day of recruitment, and you go to your final few houses. The good news is that means you can usually bust out your favorite pair of heels (if you like wearing them) because you won't be spending the whole day on your feet. On the other days, though, I'd stick to cute flat sandals that make standing all day totally feasible.

3. Pick Breathable Fabrics

Madewell Embroidered Suncoast Dress, $158,

The days you're not wearing a t-shirt and shorts (or other casual outfit) you'll probably be wearing a sundress or slightly nicer dress. In those circumstances, you're going to want to pick a fabric like cotton for its really breathable qualities. Missouri's August weather is hot, and wearing something tight and clingy was just never in the cards for me.

4. On Pref Day, Stick To Classic Silhouettes

Theory Split Front Dress, $315,

Although you should totally feel free to show your personality through what you're wearing, the last day of recruitment, Pref Day, is the most serious. For me, that meant that sticking to a neutral dress in a classic silhouette was the best way to feel comfortable with what I was wearing and let my personality shine. So feel free to break out a nicer dress and look a little more business-casual on this day.

5. Don't Forget The Umbrella

London Fog City Bubble Umbrella, $40,

This one isn't technically a fashion tip, but it's one that you'll totally thank yourself for remembering later down the road. On day three of my recruitment freshman year, the sky burst open with a sudden downpour, and I was the only girl who had forgotten her umbrella. I luckily turned to some friendly line-mates who shared their umbrellas with me, but I ran to grab one on my lunch break and felt so much more prepared. Even if the forecast doesn't call for rain and even if the sky doesn't have a cloud, pack an umbrella (like the cute one above). You'll thank me later.

Images: Nabi Tang/Stocksy; Courtesy of Brands