The White Stuff
White or no white? That is the question. Chances are, if you work with women, you’ve heard the “No White After Labor Day” buzz around the office in the last few weeks. Is this a milestone of attire etiquette or merely an antiquated concept of our parent’s generation? One of my coworkers came into work today in a white suit, and winced as she walked past our female dominated division, waiting for us all to pounce on her. We’ve spent the better part of the day talking about it, but haven’t been able to come up with any conclusive concrete evidence to support the rule. I always figured that it was so you wouldn’t lose ivory-clad friends in the snow. So as long as it’s still warm out, why not rock your white pants? Or is the rule only about shoes?
I did some googling today and found a few interesting tidbits on this fashion phenomenon, and discovered that even college students at Howard were on the same page. My favorite quote from the article is from one of the “Howard men”.
“I honestly have never heard about that rule, ever, until right now. . . In terms of fashion, wear what you like, whenever you like, and you’ll be fine”
But did this directive ever effect men? Can you imagine Ludacris worrying about putting on the wrong pair of Jordans on September 1st? Holla at a Scholar!
Actually, the first person to speak up to my white-suited coworker this morning was a dude. “White? It’s September, Debbie.” Believe it or not, he is a hetero male, who happens to come from a lovely Montgomery County family. Let’s keep in mind, that this dressing decree came from a world of high society as a status symbol centuries ago. Old habits die hard, my mom still packs her white shoes around after the Labor Day barbeque.
If high-fashion designers and clothiers are adding white pieces to their fall and winter lines, I think it is safe to say that we have freed ourselves from the chains of this archaic statute of style. Hey, if you can get away with wearing white, work it. I promise I won’t tell Miss Manners.