If you wear an academic gown about once a week (or more), then you’re likely to be at an Oxbridge institution. Or maybe Durham. Though I have this image of Durham gowns being insulating and extra water/wind-proof.
I’ve become quite fond of my gown. Cambridge gowns are different from Oxford gowns, and slightly more stylish than the typical American undergraduate gown. Unlike … well, anywhere else … where academic gowns are usually only worn at graduation, gowns are part of the essential ‘formal academic attire’ required for all university functions and formal dinners in hall (think of the Harry Potter dining hall, not a state college caffeteria).
A photo of my gown in my room. Also included are me, Scooter, and a new plush bear whose name I have yet to discover. (The bear and Scooter are on decent terms, but Scoots prefers the bed while the bear prefers the window sill.)
Gowns are suprisingly modern-looking (though not necessarily by design). Undergraduates have slightly different gowns depending on their college. Graduate students either wear BA gowns (if they were undergraduates at Cambridge), BA status gowns (if they were undergradautes elsewhere), or MA status gowns (if they are over 24). They are worn over relatively formal attire (suit and tie, though not black tie) and add quite a bit of panache, I think. I can’t help but strut a little when I’m walking across Great Court in my gown.
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