A Civil World. Off-topic discussions on a variety of topics. > Trans-Atlantic Knowledge Exchange

Dear US, what's up with Labor Day?

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Carotte:
As long as I can remember I've seen references on tv and in books about labor Day, and mostly not wearing white after it. But there was never any indication of what is labor day.
So, what does it entails? Why the 'not wearing white' after it, and when can you start wearing white again then?

Yvaine:
It's a day to celebrate people in the workforce, and sometimes specifically people in labor unions, and a lot of people get the day off. It has also become a big shopping day.

As for what it has to do with wearing white, it also serves as sort of an arbitrary endpoint to summer, and Memorial Day in May is the arbitrary beginning point. These are also when outdoor ice cream shops and swimming pools, etc., will often open/close. (This may be because the actual solstice and equinox don't correspond to how the weather works in a lot of places! By the time the solstice rolls around, it's already been hot for a month where I live, and it often stops being hot before it's officially fall.) So it has become the time people switch to a fall wardrobe. Some social circles are way stricter about this than others.

Two Ravens:
For an history of Labor Day, you can read the wiki article here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Labor_day

But basically, as Yvaine said, it's the unofficial end of summer/start of fall.

And the rule about not wearing white isn't really a rule anymore. Plenty of people continue to wear it all winter long, and nobody really cares.

lowspark:
Ha ha. This is a pretty funny question. The "wearing white" part anyway.

Labor Day is a day to honor "Labor" as in labor vs management.
Here's a history. http://www.dol.gov/laborday/history.htm

The wearing of white is an arbitrary rule made up by who knows who!
It's a sort of guideline as to when summer starts (Easter) and when it ends (Labor Day) as far as the fashion police are concerned. So, if you are one who is concerned that wearing white, a summer color, is gauche if it's worn out of season, then don't wear it before Easter or after Labor Day.

It's pretty silly but some people adhere to it blindly. No one's going to arrest your or even comment if you don't follow that unless maybe you're in the fashion industry, I dunno.

This reminds me of the movie, Serial Mom. Spoiler Alert!!!
After being acquitted of multiple murders (of which she is definitely guilty) Serial Mom proceeds to kill a jury member by beating her over the head with a pay phone receive because she's wearing white shoes after Labor Day.
Hilarious.

lowspark:
I should add that white means bright white. There is a color called "winter white" that is just slightly off white which is definitely "ok" to wear in winter.

Again, it's all arbitrary and as Two Ravens notes, totally outdated.

And I'm pretty sure it's Easter, not Memorial Day, which marks the beginnning of "ok to wear white" season. Lots of white shoes, hats, etc. get sold for that holiday.

eta to fix typo

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