The casual wear trend has been in the United States since the 20th century. In the 1900s, it was the hi-tech companies that did away with the stiffly formal three-piece suits to provide more choices, comfort and most importantly, less stress about dressing for their employees. Since then, these companies have kept on this casual dress code. However, this trend is slowly catching up with the big guns of New York and Boston as well.
Corporate companies like some law firms are also doing away with the formal suit and tie and replacing them with a suaver and stylish casual wear. The reason behind this is that this dress code serves better while dealing with similarly dressed hi-tech clients and also give employees more choices to choose from. These free codes have been a boon to some employees while for others, it is a nuisance.
What is the dress code?
For the fashion savvy people, this dress code means a chance to show off their fashion prowess and an opportunity to dress differently and better than their rivals to stand out in the crowd. Power dressing gets a whole new meaning there. Loafers and casual shirts for men and dressy tops for women! Also, there is another question of comfort. The formal suit and tie are not only boring to wear every day but are also very constraining.
What is the confusion?
Another side of the coin has as many grievances, perhaps more, as many advantages were just counted. First and foremost, the term itself poses a confusing situation. It says casual wear, but it means that the employees are required to wear anything other than casuals. When we think of casuals, we think of a pair of shorts, a t-shirt, and flip-flops or maybe some sandals. But not in this case, No, here you cannot wear jeans or t-shirts or flip-flops or shorts or any such clothing or footwear. This is an office, and hence, you are required to wear clothes that are appropriate and complement the corporate environment while being casual and trendy.
The young dandies might know what that means but to the fashion-challenged, the geeks and most of the elder employees are left without a clue of what just happened. They have to wear casuals that do not appear to be casual and yet are casual without being casual. And the worst part is, they have to go through the dilemma of what to wear every day. This is enough to make them wish for the traditional boring suit and tie combo.
Due to the unease of their employees, some companies are going back to the dear old formal dress code. What once used to be a casual Friday, has become a dress up Friday, where employees are supposed to wear suits and ties only on Friday. While some have allocated formal dressing a day, others have fully changed the dress code from casual to once again formal.