Who says you can’t wear white after Labor Day?

Do we really need to ship our white linen, cream colored skirts, and ivory pants off to storage this weekend?

Have you experienced a heap of scorn while wearing a pair of white shorts in mid-September, even if the temperature is in the 80s?

Really? Who makes these rules?

Did the “Don’t Wear White After Labor Day” rule stem from practicality or is this some arbitrary dress code?

Well, there are a few theories about the origin of this strange rule but the general consensus is that in the early 20th century white clothing was a symbol of affluence, a way to use fashion to separate those with money from those without. 

The theory being that the working class didn’t wear white because urban life was too gritty and most had jobs that were simply, dirty work. Those who created the fashion rule were the same ones who could afford to escape the grimy city for their summer homes. If you didn’t have to work you could wear white because it wouldn’t get dirty.

We can blame it on the elite white folks, or the more likely theory that in 1894 Labor Day was declared a federal holiday and that marked the official end of summer.

Vacations are over, fall is in the air, kids are buying school clothes, and truthfully, temps in the 80s or not, white clothing just feels out of place.

Eventually the whole idea of no white after labor day trickled down to the middle class and just stuck.

But now? Seriously? With fashion trends that could not get more outrageous, I think the whole white thing has been buried.

So while you may have grown up hearing about this outdated tradition, but you really just want to wear that white linen skirt? Bottom line (and Coco Chanel will back me on this) you can wear white every day of the year if you’d like.


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