It’s that time of year again, when hundreds of students come together for one last time, they hug each other, shake hands with their lectures and beam with pride as they pose for pictures with their family and friends.

For many this is the most important day of their academic lives, it signifies growing up and entering the working world, being completely independent of their family and supporting themselves. Of course I’m talking about graduating, but finally earning your degree isn’t all this day is all about; graduation season is like a mini fashion week for us students, and when it comes to working this season’s trends, Irish graduates do it better than anyone else. With groups of girls running around college, all chatting excitedly and telling each other of their future plans it was hard not to look at the array of colours and styles poking out from underneath their gowns.

This year’s graduation style is more in than ever; jewel colour cocktail dresses, monochrome tailoring and sky-high heels are the order of the day for this year’s graduates, and many took inspiration from this year’s autumn/winter catwalks.

Looking feminine and adopting a classic style appeared at every fashion week and in every magazine of the season. Jewel tones replaced the summer’s acid brights, and ultra-feminine and flattering cuts took over from the Boho chic of the previous year. Luxury fabrics such as silk, satin, lace and brocade bring a vintage look to new styles, and simple patterned dresses teamed with detailed accessories help make outfits look timeless.

To keep warm 40s and 50s inspired leather gloves, capes and furs are a must have, and when it comes to a more relaxed look, slightly more masculine styles, metallics and monochrome never fail. But what exactly are graduates wearing this year?

Well many girls seem to be braving the cold and wet weather conditions by opting for bare, tanned legs and sleeveless dresses underneath their gowns. Super short and playful styles are very popular, with many girls choosing one shoulder, fitted cocktail dresses. The colours graduates are going for this year are mostly bold, jewel like colours, with purples, pinks and greens being particularly popular. However some are going for a slightly different look, selecting a more androgynous look such as blazers over dresses, darker colours and even female tuxedos.

But outfits aren’t the most important thing when it comes to graduation style, the prefect hair, makeup, shoes and accessories are all key elements in achieving the prefect graduation look, as they’re the only things that can be seen when our graduates are wearing their caps and gowns.

This year graduates have kept hair and makeup simple and very tasteful, makeup is young and fresh and the popular hair style this year seems to be down with soft, loose curls or waves, this kind of understated look works very well with bright dresses as it allows more attention to be drawn to the dress and keeps the overall look from looking tacky or over the top.

When it comes to shoes, almost everyone seems to be wearing sky-high, Sex and the City inspired heels, some going for bright colours to match their dresses, while others keep it simple with nude tones. Over all this year’s graduates know what’s in style and exactly how to work it!