Dungarees – Why I love them

We asked two of our writers to argue over dungarees. Here’s the post against them.

Put Kimye on the cover of US Vogue and an international social media war will begin, wear dungarees to the next get together with your friends and an equally interesting debate will start: “Come to fix the plumbing have you?” Yes, some will love them, some will hate them so you better have some clever answers prepared to put the narrow minded haters to bed.

To begin with, dungarees have a long and interesting history. They were first worn around 1790 by farmers and other sweat-spilling gloriously muscled men (bet I’ve got your attention now), during WW1 they became a uniform of the female factory workers (that should get some feminist pulses going), and by the time the 60s had arrived, dungarees had turned into a proper trend, which has currently been revived by fashion girls like Alexa Chung or Leandra Medine.

Yes, some will say they are not feminine, some will say they are too grungy, but the secret here lies in the combination of garments you choose. Of course, the easy way is to wear them with your converse and a plain t-shirt, but why should you not try a different approach, something more chic yet effortless? You can wear them with anything, be it your new pointy flats and a crisp white shirt, pretty ballerinas and pastel colors to get a Parisian feeling, espadrilles and a striped crop top to make you think of holidaying in Rome. Even teamed with high heels and bright red lipstick for an evening out. I mean, if Rihanna can do it, why shouldn’t you?

@2014 spring campaign erin wasson for madewell

Simple accessories are another key to success. Dungarees, whether long or short, look great with a beanie, with a strappy top, even with a scarf tied like a bandana. You don’t even have to fret about bags, because they usually have so many pockets that you can put everything you need in there, keeping your hands free for other things (like plumbing – only joking).

In addition to that, they are just super comfortable and practical. Let’s say you are too bored to pick an outfit, you just want to put something on without having to worry about complicated styling rules and ideas. Dungarees are as versatile as your LBD and can be worn the whole year long, with long sleeved tops and knits in winter, a vest top in spring and your beloved bikini in the summer, as opposed to many other trend items who only endure one season.

And let’s not forget how clever they are – dungarees are the best way to go if you just want to relax and have a walk or a drink without constantly feeling body conscious. How does my butt look? How am I going to conceal my muffin top on a fat day? Well, I can tell you that dungarees are your new best friend – they can hide a multitude of sins, whilst relieving you of any unnecessary fashion anxiety. Plus, they can make you look younger and edgier, thanks to the tomboy style they’ve got going on.

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Ultimately, and most importantly, denim will never go out of fashion – especially not this year, due to 90s style making such a major comeback. Even Karl Lagerfeld made his models wear sneakers at the latest Chanel haute couture show and if the Kaiser himself can go casual why can’t we? Not all fashion trends have to be in-your-face sexy, or even embellished with loads of fussy detail.

Not everything has to be the result of meticulous study and curation in front of the mirror at home – sometimes the golden rule is ‘just wear something that makes you feel great’. Dressing isn’t always about pleasing other people or trying to look as try-hard as you can, indulge and please yourself for once in a while – so sod everyone else, chill the fuck out and embrace the dungarees.

Images: uk.dungarees-online.com, Madewell Spring 2014 campaign, ASOS.com

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