Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Holiday and Preppy Sweater Watch 2006

ski sweaters
Originally uploaded by Peacebang.

You are snazzy people, my readers, so I know I don't have to tell you that you aren't under any obligation to wear that reindeer-motif sweater your Aunt Mona got you last year. You just tell Aunt Mona that you gave that sweater to Someone Who Needed It More Than You, and she'll totally forgive you. You're such a giver.
Tell her that, then see that you do it. Because honey, ANYONE needs that sweater more than you do. They could live in HAWAII and need that sweater more than you do. If you wear that sweater you will just be giving your dignity right over to Dasher, Dancer, Prancer and Vixen. As I've repeated many times, there should be no holiday-themed wear in your working wardrobe.

While you're avoiding holiday motif sweaters, my little cider donuts, could you also consider steering clear of snowflake sweaters and other such Aspen vacation-evoking garments?

Here's the thing: unless you're doing ski lodge ministry, I don't really think the Suzy Chapstick look is terribly professional. It's just so bloody preppy. I know it's not fair, but I'm going to say it anyway: Whenever I see someone in one of those Fair Isle sweaters I always think to myself, "Well, there's someone who's never met a black person in her life."

I KNOW that's not fair. I SAID it wasn't fair. But I grew up in one of the towns listed in the preppy handbook, and I have a very old prejudice against Fair Isles.

Remember that Extreme Prep, although cute and sporty, is inherently about privilege and naturally evokes associations of country club elitism. Just be aware, and for god's sake, don't wear green courduroys with pink whales on them.



Blogger Natalie said...

Except they're not Fair Isles. They're Norwegian sweaters--similar, but not the same thing at all. The traditional construction techniques are slightly different, the motifs are different, and the types of yarns used are different--at least when it comes to handknitting. All bets are off when it comes to mass-produced machine knits.

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having grown up in a seriously WASPy town myself, I, too, developed an allergy to all things preppy. Atchoo!

11:52 AM  
Blogger PeaceBang said...

Natalie, I know they're not Fair Isles. Did you think I was going to post an actual photo of Fair Isles? They give me hives just to LOOK at them. The ones I posted I would categorize as "Snowflake Corny."

1:05 PM  
Anonymous Kit said...

Unless, of course, Aunt Mona actually knitted that sweater. In that case she won't forgive you and right she is too. You are not, however, obligated to wear the sweater to work. You are free to explain to Aunt Mona that you spend very little time outside in snowstorms and could really use something that looks professional to wear to work. She'll have whole volumes of patterns to browse and will love being appreciated. Hand knits can be very chic.

7:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anyone ever watched The Vicar of Dibley? Dawn French had much to say on the topic of sweaters.

9:04 PM  
Blogger Peregrinato said...

What about my Icelandic wool sweater which I picked up in Reykjavik? (And is honestly too warm to wear here in almost any occasion, but I retain the right...though if i'm wearing it I'd probably be out-n-about and bundled up, and not walking into a meeting. So maybe the point is moot.)

1:23 PM  

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