Gen Z-Approved Outfits for Back to School, Y2K and Street Style Trends

Gen Z-Approved Outfits for Back to School, Y2K and Street Style Trends

By Felicia Czochanski

Y2K, the futuristic fashion trend from the late 90s and early 2000s is back, and an identifying factor of Gen Z. While it’s rare for millennials to get excited about a style based on low-rise pants and crop tops – after being spoiled for so long with high-waisted denim and leggings, Gen Z has been a champion of the trend that blends pop culture, neon colors, and vintage tech advancements, setting them apart. With the majority of Gen Z still in school or just starting their post-grad lives, it’s important to call out that both Y2K and Street Style looks are going to dominate back-to-school season this year.

 While Y2K might bring up nostalgia for movies like Clueless or Mean Girls, the Street Style trend gives off a more relaxed and almost care-free look. Street Style is rooted in comfort – baggy pants, including sweatpants, oversized graphic t-shirts (bonus points if they’re vintage) and fun, chunky sneakers. It’s a look that you can hangout in all day, no matter what your plans might be. Street Style is an elevated version of the ‘just rolled out of bed and I’m late for class’ look. Yet while the outfits under this trend look easy to pull together, there is some thought that needs to go into them to create that distinction that the look was intentional, versus the first pieces of clothing you pulled from your closet in a rush.

The great thing about both of these styles – in addition to what overlaps between them which are small and almost miniature accessories like purses and hair clips – is that everything was in style years ago already. Both Y2K and Street Style trends have been donated to Goodwill stores over the years, creating a stockpile of awesome vintage Juicy Couture, BCBG, and even Limited Too clothing that you are likely wishing you or your older sibling had the foresight to keep for yourself!

Wondering how you can integrate these trends into your back to school wardrobe? Check out the outfit inspiration sourced from real Goodwill shoppers, below!

1. Y2K Style

Neon checkerboard print is the epitome of Y2K style, especially for Gen Z. This outfit is rocking a lot of great trends – gold jewelry, a layered collared shirt with a fitted tank underneath, and the print that pulls it all together. From the classroom to the after-school clubs, this look is on-trend for back to school season. The second look brings together some of the best of Street Style, but from a Y2K lens! This outfit features the hot pink shorts, which are perfect for a statement piece, paired with a cropped t-shirt look. The way this Goodwill shopper is rocking her style, it fits the Y2K trend, but turn that top into an oversized t-shirt and those shorts into sweatpants, and you’ve got yourself a Y2K Street Style look – two trends in one!

2. Street Style… for Campus

Bringing your favorite Street Style looks to campus isn’t as hard as you might think. Pair an oversized t-shirt with bicycle shorts and sneakers for a comfy casual look that showcases your personality in addition to your mood. In the colder months, depending on where you’re heading off to school, this second look might be perfect for you. I’m obsessed with those comfy fuzzy sandals and the layered look with a flannel and baggy jeans. Back to school can bring enough stress into your life as you start managing your time and assignments, so let your outfit be a source of comfort that can get you through any study session.

Have a Goodwill haul that you’re really proud of? Tag us at @lincoln_goodwill in your next Instagram post or reel for a chance to be featured in an upcoming post or blog!

Goodwill Helps Job Seekers Overcome Employment Barriers Through New RentWise Classes

Goodwill Helps Job Seekers Overcome Employment Barriers Through New RentWise Classes

By Alana Sesow

Since 1932, Goodwill’s programs and services have helped Southeast Nebraskans overcome a variety of employment barriers. Now, Goodwill is expanding on those services with RentWise: a six-module class that helps individuals become good tenants so they can secure stable housing and stable jobs.

Housing is a common obstacle for job seekers today, according to Goodwill Employment Specialist Kate Shotkoski. In fact, she said it’s a number-one priority for many of her clients at Goodwill’s Job Connection Center.

“When an individual doesn’t have to worry about housing, it is so much easier to focus on work,” Shotkoski said. “Their outlook improves so much. It ties in so much with making sure they can stay employed.”

RentWise covers a variety of topics such as property upkeep, conflict resolution, the Landlord Tenant Act and how to spot housing discrimination. After completing Goodwill’s RentWise class, individuals receive certificates that they can present to potential landlords, showing that they have taken active steps to becoming a good tenant. This certificate is especially helpful to those who face traditional housing barriers, including justice-involved individuals, individuals who age out of the foster care system and new Americans.

Goodwill’s RentWise classes are currently offered to individuals served by Fresh Start. As staffing and resources allow, Goodwill hopes to expand the class to other local agencies. To learn more about Goodwill’s mission, programs and services, visit the Programs page and follow Lincoln Goodwill Job Connection on Facebook.

Eight Thrift Tips for Your Next Goodwill Trip

Eight Thrift Tips for Your Next Goodwill Trip

By Alana Sesow

Planning a Goodwill shopping spree? Whether you’re a first-time customer or a Goodwill pro, check out these eight tips for maximizing your thrift trip and finding the best secondhand treasures:

  • Make a plan. Goodwill sells almost any good-condition item you can find in your home, which means our inventory is large and diverse. Before you set foot in our store, know the purpose of your trip and plan accordingly. Decorating your new apartment? Head straight to our furniture and wares sections. Thrifting a formal outfit? Search our racks of dresses, blazers, slacks, shoes, and your favorite-colored tops. Looking for a fun way to pass the time with friends? Explore whatever catches your eye, or take the Goodwill Date Night Challenge.
  • Make time. Thrifting is a marathon, not a sprint. Because every item at Goodwill is unique, searching one rack of clothing or one shelf of home goods might take longer than it would at a retailer with mass-produced items. Expect your Goodwill outing to last longer than a trip to a typical retail store, and remember that patience and focus are key to discovering secondhand treasures.
  • Know the sales. No matter when you visit Goodwill, there’s always something on sale. Every day, Goodwill offers select clothing and wares at 50% off, indicated by the color on the price tag. Additionally, military members, students and seniors receive a 20% discount on certain weekdays, and Goodwill offers special sales and giveaways for our social media followers throughout the year.
  • Shop out of season. When temperatures reach triple digits, don’t be afraid to browse our outerwear section or search for your next pair of winter boots. Out-of-season items are frequently donated, but commonly overlooked when they reach the sales floor. You’ll be ready when the seasons change, and you might even find some brand-name or new-with-tags apparel along the way.
  • Shop outside your section. Remember that sizes vary from brand to brand, and there are a range of styles within both women’s and men’s clothing. Plus, mixing styles, colors and cuts is an easy way to update your wardrobe for the upcoming season. Don’t be afraid to experiment!
  • Get creative. You don’t need to have Martha Stewart skills to upcycle something from Goodwill. With a little bit of creativity, you can transform a teapot into a planter, a basket into wall décor, or a pair of jeans into a dog toy. Visit our Pinterest boards for more ideas.
  • Use the one-in, one-out rule. Every time you visit Goodwill, set a goal to donate at least as many items as you buy. Not only does donating reduce household clutter, but it also supports Goodwill’s programs and services that help local job seekers gain the skills they need for employment. Goodwill makes donating easy by accepting items at all Lincoln and York locations during store hours.
  • Visit often. At Goodwill, no two thrift trips are alike. Because our employees place new items on the sales floor every day, even back-to-back visits to the same Goodwill location can be unique. With five Lincoln and York stores open seven days a week, the possibilities are multiplied.

For more Goodwill thrift tips, news and sales, follow us on social media and subscribe to our monthly e-newsletter.