Kennedy Pope: Explorations into white after Labor Day

The longest and most sacred rule of fashion happens to be the rule everyone seems to break.
Sep 2, 2014
Kennedy Pope

The longest and most sacred rule of fashion happens to be the rule everyone seems to break.

Everyone knows that wearing white in the summer makes you feel cooler and stay calm when it’s 102 degrees outside, but what some people don’t know or tend to ignore is white after Labor Day is not OK. 

No one is really sure why this fashion rule came into effect or when, but it’s been that way since the late 1800s.

Labor Day became a federal holiday in 1894, and eventually society named it the end point day of summer fashion.

The famous designer Coco Chanel made it known to everyone she was wearing white year round, and by the 1950s, magazines everywhere were making it clear wearing white started Memorial Day and ended Labor Day.

Some might say fashion rules are meant to be broken, but something that is so timeless and always has been a rule should not be broken.

Just because it is a rule to not wear white after Labor Day does not mean you cannot invest in those winter whites.

Winter whites are shades of cream, ivory and pearl. Depending on the material, these colors are the statement piece for a fall and colder-climate outfit. 

In some warmer areas in the United States, like Florida or Hawaii, people tend to wear their white clothing year round, but for us southerners, we have no excuse. 

If white is one of your go-to colors you wear every day, then wearing a white button-up or blouse might be your saving grace.

Something everyone should stay away from and put away is your pearly white shoes, white pants and definitely those white purses. 

Wearing jeans, a white button-up and a blazer does not count as breaking the Labor Day rule.

Since the 21st Century, the fashion world is much more relaxed about what colors to wear and when, but every year you will still hear people say white after Labor Day is just not acceptable.

Kennedy Pope is a Lebanon High School senior and fashion columnist for The Democrat. 


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