Good lord, it's been ages since I posted, but I figured starting to write again would be a good thing. I will most likely be writing about random things that come to mind, so yes, they'll have a rambly tone. Today's post will deal with travel wear, i.e., what people wear on flights.
Now, since I started my new job in August, I've had the opportunity to take a few flights here and there. I'm all for comfort, but I refuse to look like a slob just because I'm going on a plane. I'm sure all of you heard about the girl who got kicked off a Southwest flight for wearing racy clothes (footnote: she wasn't wearing underwear with her tiny skirt), so there has to be some balance between looking like you rolled out of bed vs. rolling to the club.
As I stood waiting for a flight at Chicago's O'Hare airport, I did some people watching, and I was flabbergasted by how sloppily people dressed. The only ones who stood out were the businesspeople because they were more put together. Even then, the men had the ladies beaten in the style department. When did this switch happen, ladies? Weren't we supposed to be the fairer sex?
And then the casual travelers ranged from the tacky to the sleepy to the just plain wrong. Never had I seen so many capris, cropped pants, shapeless sacks, and pajamas with socks and sneakers. Not stylish urban trainers a la Puma, but heavy duty, industrial I'm-going-to-the-gym sneakers. I still don't understand the American fascination with sneakers/tennis shoes. They're not ubercomfortable, are a hassle to unlace/relace for airport security, and if you're calling them "tennis shoes" please wear them solely for playing tennis.
Back to the clothes -- women, even if you have body issues, hear me out. Shapeless sacks, e.g., oversized t-shirts, muumuu dresses, Hawaiian shirt, etc. will not hide your flaws. They will serve only to make you look like you have no shape and are hence wearing the shapeless sack. Contrary to what you think, ladies, (Oh I'm fat; oh I have no waist; oh my legs are too short; oh my boobs are too small; blah blah blah) you DO have a shape. The trick is learning how to play up what you like and artfully concealing what you don't like. Short legs look shorter in *gasp* shorts, capris, and cropped pants unless you wear them with a sandal or heel or heeled sandal. Why do short women insist on wearing these abominations?? Big shirts only make you look bigger than you are, so wear the RIGHT size, which does not mean a tight size.
I suppose some of you reading this will say, well that's all fine, but people want to be comfortable on a flight. Fair enough, but if I had a dollar for every time someone defended their style (or lack thereof) due to comfort, I'd have a good wad of cash. Comfort is not always pajamas and sweats, and it takes the same amount of effort to wear something nicer as to wear crap. For example, on said flights I took, with the exception of long haul flights, I wore dresses. Yes, dresses. Comfort? Check. Stylish? Damn straight they are. What about how cold it is in airplanes? Tights and leggings work wonders, and they're as comfortable as my pajamas.
I hear those scoffs -- oh she probably wore heels too...pfffftt. Yes, I did, but I wear heels most of the time anyway. And, by the way, most heels slip on and off. If heels aren't your cup of tea, just take a look at how many flats are in the stores. Cute ones! I generally don't do flats because a) I'm short, b) flats don't have enough arch support, and c) I feel frumpy in flats. As for the heavy sneakers, aforementioned Puma makes great streamlined sneakers and sneaker-inspired shoes, a lot of which are slip on. So do Diesel and Lacoste, and I'm sure you can find quality knockoffs or the real things on discount at outlet stores. Please, for the love of God, leave the sneakers to the gym.
Oh, and the men weren't without fault. If you must wear a t-shirt, leave the arms attached, and have a decent logo/silkscreen/print on them. I don't want to see your sweaty pits peeking out from under a "Beerfest Pong Champion 1995" shirt. There were only a couple of those guys, but the most egregious mistake I saw (and I see these everywhere, not just at airports) were pant hems that were too short. I worked in the men's department of a major store for quite some time, and I can safely say I was taught well about where a pant hem should end. Not at the ankle, not at the top of the shoe, but at the top of the heel of the shoe. Yes, gentlemen, you have heels. Don't believe me? Take a look at your dress shoes. Yep, there it is. When you have to get your pants hemmed, men, the finished hem should hit right at the top of that heel. I'm so sorely tempted to ask, "Where's the flood?" when I see guys with hems at their ankles. Seriously. Oh, and while men can still get away with pleated pants, please don't stuff the pockets with PDAs, keys, change, etc. because it throws everything out of proportion and makes your midsection look bulky. You don't want that.
Phew. I can go on, believe me, but someone might have the urge to smack me. I'm only trying to help, I promise. If you're intrigued or wondering who the heck do I learn this from, TLC's "What Not to Wear" show is a great resource as is the book What You Wear Can Change Your Life. I'm also happy to answer questions via comments (if anyone's still reading, that is!)