Why exactly can't I wear white after Labor Day?

Why exactly can’t we wear white after Labor Day??

Hang with me. I’m not advocating wearing white in the Christmas family photo, but it stays pretty darn hot in most of the U.S. late into September and even October (it was 81 in Cincinnati in October just a couple of years ago!). Everyone knows white clothes keep you cooler than darker colors. So it seems silly to toss out a chunk of your wardrobe (the favorite part of my wardrobe) just because of a holiday (the date of which changes every year). But there had to be a hard and fast precedent for this rule that we all have had drilled into us at an early age – so I decided to do some googling! Surprise… there’s no good answer!


The rule originated shortly after the American Civil War (already seeming irrelevant?). The war consolidated a lot of the country’s wealth into old, established families (the old rich). But the post-war economic recovery provided new opportunities to new families, and a lot of the wealth began to flow to new families all across the country. In an effort to keep their grip on society, the old wealth tried to distance themselves from the “new wealth.” This effort extended into the fashion world…

Women in the “old money” families created arbitrary fashion rules and kept them private to only their “old money” friends. That way, they could keep some sort of a barrier between them and the “new money” that was stepping up into society. Thus originated the ban on white after Labor Day. Lame, right?!

Again, I’m not one for wearing my favorite white dresses in the snow and slush, but it’s nice to know that the origins of this silly rule at least give us some leeway in our wardrobe! Need some more motivation to break the mold? One of the greatest fashion minds of the modern age stood against the silly rule. Coco Chanel started bucking the no-white-after-Labor-Day trend back in 1920! I’ll hitch my horse to her wagon!

Does the story seem too far-fetched? Don’t take my word for it!


This is just something I stumbled across a couple of weeks ago, and I wanted to share it with you ladies! So let’s grab those lovely white maxi dresses and step proudly into fall! Speaking of fall, have you checked out our lovely new Fall Arrivals collection?! Perfection. 

What are your thoughts? Do you routinely wear white after Labor Day? If so, how do you pull it off? Have contrary thoughts? Either way, I would love to hear your tips and opinions in the comments! 👇

Love, Kevie

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  • Kevie on

    Good info and thanks for the tip, Connie! We’re ready to bring that look back!! ;)

  • Connie on

    Such interesting info! I love white/ivory wool winter coats and jackets. Also love white sweaters! We used to call it winter white!

  • Kevie on

    Yes!! Love it, Anna. Now I’ll stop wearing them well before the snow falls, but tired of getting snarky looks bc I’m in white after a random holiday…

  • Anna on

    I love white pants! For fall I pair them with a tan (or darker color) sweater and brown boots.

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