Fashion Changes

I was in the cafeteria at work the other day thinking about how much workplace fashions have changed since I was a shiny new worker-bee Betsy.

For example, I was working at a bank when casual Fridays came into vogue. In fact, they had been all the rage in other industries for several years (banks are notorious late adopters of fashion trends). It was a HUGE deal when this bank decided to prove how progressive it was by adopting casual Fridays. They printed a multi-page pamphlet and distributed it to all employees giving guidelines of what was appropriate casual wear, and what was not. If we had any questions, we were supposed to contact our supervisor for guidance.

I’m not kidding. I wish I had saved the pamphlet.

I can just imagine my supervisor’s face if I had called him at 7:00 in the morning to ask if my casual day attire was appropriate.  “But my biker shorts are purple…are they okay?”

I don’t work in banking anymore. At my current employer, quite a few people wear jeans or cords every day of the week. And during the summer flip-flops are everywhere in our office – for men and women (although I wish the men would shave their hairy toes before they wear them).

I also remember a day when I was only a few years out of high school. I was talking to my supervisor at at one of my first jobs – an older woman who basically ran the office. I don’t know how it came up, but she said (and this is pretty much a direct quote) “I think it should be illegal for women to wear pants to work.”

Well, okay then.

Today I often see young (and some not-so-young) women wearing skirts or dresses that hit them mid-thigh or higher at work. Sometimes the dress or skirt just barely covers their butt. One day I followed a young woman who was wearing a light pink sweater dress so short that she had to constantly tug it down as she walked. I believe I saw not only the color, but the style of her underwear, which was really more information that I cared to receive. (although if she hadn’t been wearing any underwear, that REALLY would have been TMI)

I laughed when I thought about my old supervisor and her edict against pants. I’m not quite sure this was what she had in mind.

And the moral of the story? You should always be careful what you ask for. You just might get it.

And if you’re going to wear a short skirt to work, you should always wear underwear.



  1. Thank gosh it wasn’t a thong….

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