Let’s talk about it: The Wearing White Rule

I follow a blogger who lives in Texas…not like the all the time hot Texas, but the Texas who gets weather like we have Texas. It is Texas though so it is warmer! Anyway…She has been wearing her white jeans for a while now. Started about mid-february.

This made me think…is it time to throw out the “No white before Easter or after Labor Day” law we have all lived by? I have done some research to see why we live by such a stringent fashion rule. I mean is there a practical reason, that I just can’t see?

First off, the rule actually states “NO white before Memorial Day and after Labor Day” so it would seem to me that someone has already done some tweaking on this pesky rule. All my life I have been told “before Easter” not “before Memorial Day.” What about you?

Also, I always felt like I was betraying my Southern Belle sisters of old by disobeying this rule. However, it doesn’t seem to have originated in the South. Although we, as southern girls, have definitely followed it for years.

There are a couple thoughts on where this rule actually came from and neither apply to us as girls today.

Back in the early 1900’s the ultra rich would leave the city, as in New York City, after Memorial Day in May and they wouldn’t return until after Labor Day in September. During those months they spent in the Hamptons, their wardrobes would change. Instead of dark suits, they would put on whites, pastels and linens. All those clothes that would scream warmer weather. However, their reasoning wasn’t to beat the heat. Nope, it was a way for them to show off their wealth because to wear white or light colored clothing would mean you weren’t doing any hard labor. You would project your wealth by your ability to spend all day in white without getting dirty! When summer was over and Labor Day came, they would pack up their white and go back to their dark suits.

Another theory that sort of adds to the one above is proof every generation has their version of a Regina George “Mean Girl.” These ultra rich were old money, meaning their money had been around a long long time and they likely had little to do with making it. However, they weren’t the only rich in town. There were these “Nouveau Riche” families who had come from nothing but ended up being their neighbors in the Hamptons with wealth that would rival their old money. The theory is these old rich gals came up with the “when to wear white” rule as a way to make the new rich gal feel inadequate because she didn’t know those unwritten fashion rules.

Who knew that the innocent rule of when I can wear my white denim would be steeped in such snobbery? Not me and who really knows how much truth is here. To be honest maybe no one really knows how or why this rule came into being. If no one knows or if what I wrote about above is true…if this rule really worth following?

I have a few friends and relatives that do not live in the south. I asked them if they had noticed anyone following the “Wear White Rule”. Their response was, “No.” One even went so far as to say, “We wear white all the time. Throw that rule out the window.”

Material, though, that does matter. Where we can, in my opinion, get away with white denim in February, wearing white linen is something different. If the garment SCREAMS summer it should probably stay in the closet till summer. Those white jeans, that white denim jacket, or that white blazer…get those out of the closet!

Below you will find some white denim options in case your like me and ready to throw out that “Wear White Rule” nonsense!

A word of warning…remember when purchasing white denim go up a size if you have to. Nothing worse than TIGHT WHITE PANTS! I have said it often the importance is not in the number on the tag but how a given garment fits you!!

White Denim Choices

My Outfit Details

Jeans | Mid-Rise Distressed Rockstar White Jeans | $24.99 I always go up a size!

Sweater | Forever 21 Slub Knit Lace-back Sweater | $17.90 I’m wearing medium


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