Dear Fashion Police: What is the deal with open-toed shoes or sandals and pantyhose? I thought it was a major fashion faux pas to wear hosiery with sandals, and yet I see women, even celebrities, wearing them all the time.
Dear Founded: You mean you actually witnessed this crime and did not make a citizen's arrest? Sheesh. At least your instinct served you well. It is tres tacky to do the hosiery-and-sandal thing. That's why God created sandals--so we'd have a reason to go barelegged. That seam thing showing at the toe--what's up with that?
We believe that women who wear stockings with sandals have a serious pantyhose addiction--probably going through five or six pairs a day, wearing them to bed, making middle-of-the-night Sav-On runs for some suntan L'Eggs. We can only pray these people get the help they need before it's too late.
Dear Fashion Police: What is appropriate to wear to an afternoon wedding when the reception goes into the evening? Some women look like they're going to tea at the Huntington, while others look like they are about to go clubbing. Neither look is really me, but I feel a little stuffy in a suit. Help!
--WONDERING IN WHITTIER
Dear Whit: There's something about weddings that never fails to send people into a clothing tizzy. In addition to a response card in the invitation, maybe couples should include a "suggested wardrobe" card that lists some appropriate outfits. It would no doubt eliminate a lot of anxiety.
Anyway, you're right--those flowery, flouncy tea dresses are out of place once the sun goes down, and those skimpy lingerie styles can lend that trashy look that doesn't belong at this type of event.
An afternoon-into-nighttime wedding usually calls for a short dress (around knee-length) or suit in elegant fabrics such as silk or wool. Don't look too evening-ish, and don't wear black. You can also accessorize with pearls, a scarf or a hat. If a suit isn't your thing, try a dress with a matching jacket, which tends to look less stuffy.
And don't ever hesitate to ask the bride or her mother if you're really in a quandary. That's their job.
Black and Blue: A reader named Carol who wrote to say she likes our "Cute column!" nevertheless heartily disagreed with our assessment that navy and black isn't the best color combo.
She writes: "The French have been mixing black and navy blue for decades, and they look really chic. . . . It has to be done with some awareness between shoes and stockings, but it really looks very good."
Mais oui, Carol, but the French can take Astro Turf and a rusty slop bucket and make it look chic. Not to say that all Americans are clueless when it comes to fashion, but there's no denying the navy-and-black thing is tricky and usually ends up looking just . . . odd. But if anyone's looking for an excuse to go to Paris, this might be it.
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