Every day is casual Friday, no matter how inapproriate

  • Mon Apr 2nd, 2012 4:01pm
  • Life

By Angela Hill Oakland Tribune

When the world finally collapses, it may be under a massive pile of ripped jeans from Abercrombie &Fitch.

When archaeologists from space sift through our ashes on this cold dead rock, they will not find remains of the days of yore: the French cuffs, the sterling-silver tie bars, the sleek pencil skirts and silk blouses of the mid-20th century.

No, those were replaced long ago with mutilated denim and logo T-shirts adopted for any occasion, devolving further into the rumpled, faded, polka-dot pajama bottoms tucked into black socks.

Somewhere along the line, Casual Fridays have become Casual Every Day with spiffy outfits relegated to the likes of attorneys, wait staff and TV news anchors.

Fashion forward sometimes goes fashion sideways, careering over the embankment of good taste and down the slippery slope to sloppy.

To be sure, clothing choice depends on the occasion or line of work. You’d look loony wearing a suit to a beach party or repairing a car. And casual wear isn’t inherently bad. It’s less stuffy, there’s room for more creativity and individuality than in decades past, and it’s hands-down much more comfortable at the office.

But those still nursing a small flame at the shrine of style say it’s disappointing to see more and more holey jeans at the symphony and chic restaurants.

“I find it sad to see people in jeans at the theater,” said Michael Pagan, general manager for Harry Denton’s Starlight Room atop the Sir Francis Drake hotel in San Francisco, a place where it was once expected for guests to dress up for a night out. But now?

“Someone in a suit certainly wouldn’t be out of place here, but you’d be surprised at what people wear,” Pagan said. “Tourists you can understand. They’ve been on a long flight, so they come in wearing shorts and stuff.

“But even people out for the night — club girls dress up in the Kim Kardashian kind of little dresses, but at the same time you’ll get the soccer mom type, almost to the point of wearing sweats, carrying backpacks, bad hair. The trend has gone way down for style.”