‘CunyOutfits’ kickstarts a CUNY-wide fashion community


CunyOutfits | Special to The Ticker

Suporna Das, Web Editor

As representatives of New York City, one of the world’s largest fashion capitals, CUNY students have a reputation to uphold. One of Baruch College’s own students has decided he wants to redefine college fashion and highlight the individuality among CUNY students.

@CunyOutfits is an Instagram account created by an anonymous student meant to showcase student fashion choices across all CUNY campuses. The account was created near the end of the spring 2022 semester. The student was inspired to create this account after spending his free time at the Clivner=Field Plaza, located on Baruch’s campus.

“It’s almost set up like a natural runway,” the creator said in an interview with The Ticker. “So that kind of inspired me to want to showcase student fashion and I thought a social media account would be the best way.”

As an international business major with a minor in marketing, the creator recognized Instagram as the obvious choice to lay the foundations for the account’s inevitable growth.

Before becoming @CunyOutfits, the account started as @BaruchOutfits, and was dedicated to showcasing fashion from students around Baruch.

“I felt like it would be cool to just include all of CUNY,” he said. “Other than the CUNY by Students account, there isn’t a collective student-run CUNY account.”

The creator drew inspiration from fellow archive Instagram accounts such as @blackcactusx and @hidden.ny. The latter eventually became large enough to create the fashion brand Hidden NY. While the creator also viewed the account as a jumping-off point to starting his own fashion brand, it is not the primary objective of the account.

Currently, the creator’s end-of-year goal is to have a follower count of 5,000. With just over 3,000 followers as of September, that aim isn’t too far off.

The creator also said his dream collaboration would be with the fashion brand Kith, founded by Baruch alumni Ronnie Fieg.

“It could potentially be the New York City college fashion magazine,” he said. “I’m working on the newsletter to help take steps in that direction.”

@CunyOutfits recently shared the need for student journalists to assist in the production of a free, monthly subscription-based newsletter.

“It’ll be a more detailed outlet than the account,” the creator said. “It’ll just be a way for students to show off any artistic creativity that they have.”

He has already scouted for students interested in art, cinematography, journalism, photography and modeling in his efforts to grow the account’s artistic diversity.

In fact, @CunyOutfits opened a modeling application to connect CUNY students with NYC-based fashion brands in need of models to showcase their products.

The creator is currently in contact with local fashion brands Néo-Manhattan and Abstract by Jules.

After obtaining close to 300 applicants, @CunyOutfits helped Néo-Manhattan pick two models for an upcoming photoshoot.

While it’s easy to show up to classes in sweatpants, the creator wants to encourage all students to look their best.

“If you look good, you feel good,” he said. “And if you feel good, you have a better outlook on that day.”

Fast fashion can make it easier for many students to do just that. But the account often gets criticism for featuring students wearing fast fashion brands, with some followers guilting the students in the post for wearing them. However, the creator believes this is an unfair standard to hold college students against.

“Having been raised in New York City and in the Bronx, I vouch for it,” he said. “Not everyone can afford fashion but fashion isn’t something where there should be a price level of entry. Everyone should just be able to participate in it.”

Despite the adverse effects of fast fashion, the creator recognizes that it helps make the fashion industry more accessible and releases the financial strain from college students. For this reason, @CunyOutfits isn’t opposed to utilizing it to develop one’s style.

Because it also takes time to develop, he also suggested utilizing social media. He encouraged them to find accounts they liked to use as a source of inspiration.

The creator also suggested identifying a hobby and correlating a look with that hobby as a starting point for dressing your best. For example, before getting into fashion, the creator loved to skateboard and watching other skateboarders at parks helped him build a style fitting that genre.

During the summer, @CunyOutfits relied primarily on submissions through direct messages. As the semester continues, the creator plans to visit each campus to directly take pictures of students’ outfits during their commutes between classes. It not only builds up the excitement of gaining recognition from the Instagram page, but also allows viewers to get a first-hand look of how students are arriving to class.

The growing popularity of @CunyOutfits will likely change the culture of college student fashion. @CunyOutfits is not only showcasing students’ individualitybut also creating a community for students from all facets of life to grow stylistically.