White After Labour Day?

What do you think about wearing white after Labour Day?

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Audio summary of this blog post in French

Where did the saying come from anyway? Let me put my fashion history teaching to practice here…

In the past wearing white was synonymous with light fabrics and keeping cool during the hot months. The only people who could afford to wear white for post summer vacations (or after so-called Labour Day), were the wealthy. So, most definitely, in the 1800’s wearing white was also a sign of prestige and wealth.

There is also the work factor; those who did not labour did not get dirty- so wearing white was a clear statement of social class. The wealthy could afford to not work and take vacations; while the working class could not. Then by the 1950’s it became a general rule…but as we all know, rules are meant to be broken!

First person to never acknowledge white for summer only was Coco Chanel back in the 20’s! No matter the season, white was a permanent part of her collections. And, she even recommended white pearls when not wearing white as a garment. Pearls she said brought light up to the face, making it very advantageous to illuminate our skin tone. So I say, who are we to shi shi and lift our noses? If you love white and look good in it, go for it!

The only rule I go by when it comes to whites is to recognize that there are many, and I mean many hues of white; pick the right one for you. There’s about 150 shades of white paint out there! Yes, you read that correctly. Some people look best in crisp (almost blue) whites, while others tend to look their best in deeper (going closer to off-whites, ivories, to cream even). It’s important to test this out before your purchase- especially when it comes to wearing white closer to your face (sweaters, blouses, dresses and sometimes blazers as well).

What should be important, rather than the colour itself, is mostly the season you will be wearing white. The season will determine the fabric weight- and that’s what’s important! White cottons definitely do look better in the summer- and- white wools in the winter. This will be key when deciding which white garment you’ll wear; fabric, not only because it’s white! For example, even the starchiest of whites can have a cream undertone if it comes in a sheer fabric. And if cream doesn’t suit you…For myself, I do love a blaring white, preferably with a cool colour mix, like this cute muslin Cherokee tiered dress.

Lastly, towards the 20th century, not wearing white was more for footwear than clothes really. So the general rule was no more white shoes after Labour Day (and more precisely, no more sandals; white or not!). The 21st century has changed all that- thankfully! We are wearing more and more white boots and booties like these cute ones by Steve Maddenor these ( and I love these!). And we wear them all year-round if we want!

So when choosing to wear white- don’t stop after Labour Day if you love it. To look current and stylish just remember to choose the right hue and the right fabric.

Here’s a look at how I’ve worn and continue to wear my whites (which lean on the crisp- no off-white or deep white for me). All worn after many Labour Days!

And currently- planning on wearing these cute Revamped pants alot!

Look at these cute mules with it!

Remember that everything looks better paired with white!

Confession of the Day: I rarely if ever wear white from head-to-toe. I prefer wearing white with black mostly- or with a deep splash of colour. Otherwise…I do tend to think of white as bland!

Do you wear white after Labour Day?

Stay tuned for my next Confession, because there’s always something fashionable I need to get off my chest. Keep on rocking your dopamine styling my Lovies!

21 thoughts on “White After Labour Day?

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  1. It’s funny how those old cliches and rules stick around. I always hate putting away my white pants and skirts after Labor Day. Down here in the Deep South, lightweight fabrics are comfortable throughout October. We can be at 80 degrees Fahrenheit on Christmas Day! So — I think any color is good, and the weight of the fabrics should reflect the local temperature and humidity. Thanks for an excellent article with historical explanations about our fashion “rules.”
    Thank you for participating in Talent-Sharing Tuesdays Link-Up 31.
    Carol
    http://www.scribblingboomer.com

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