Why Wear All White?
We know. It’s not the most flattering color on many people, not everyone owns a whole lot of it, and it tempts red wine, spaghetti sauce, and chocolate to fall right into your lap. Unless you’re a bride or a professional tennis player, you’re not often likely to wear an outfit entirely of white. (And yes; we know we’re asking you to wear white before Easter/Memorial Day — but c’mon, now, we know you’ve been rocking winter whites, and who really adheres to that old rule anymore, anyway?)
So why are we asking you to wear all white? Here are a few reasons, from the organization team as well as from some of our supporters on Facebook.
- The original inspiration for this event came from Leymah Gbowee’s peace protests in Liberia; the women involved in those events adopted all white clothing as their emblem.
- Since white isn’t a color most of us wear on a regular basis, it will stand out. Hopefully, this will encourage people to ask you, “Why are you dressed like that?” — thus opening the doors for conversation. Because all white is used so rarely, it is pretty striking when it is used — so, it draws the eye because of its rarity in modern fashion sense.
- From Reesa: “ I also like the connection to ghosts. What I mean by that is that, for me, part of this movement is about the taking away of women’s rights while women do not have the ability to stop them. That makes us ghosts. We can be seen but cannot shut the door, so to speak. And until the lawmakers know that we are not ghosts, until they remember that they are there because we set them there, until we activate ourselves to prevent our rights being stripped away, then I fear it will just continue.”
- From Sasha: “At Bryn Mawr we wear all white on May Day, where we symbolically break the chains of the patriarchy and celebrate women (and it is a day that has historical political associations) so it seemed appropriate to me in that way as well.”
- From Robin: “To me, this says, we are all pure of heart, we are all beautiful. It’s not up to men to judge us. We are not just a Madonna or a whore, we are multi-faceted individual human beings who can think for ourselves and experience love and hardship and loss just like men.”
- Additionally, white was the color embraced by the original suffragist movement in the UK and the US. Over the next few days, I’ll try to find some great pictures from the ladies (and their gentleman allies) who helped break through that first barrier nearly 100 years ago.
An upcoming post will feature some ideas on how to join the movement even if you can’t wear all white — if you don’t own a single stitch of it or have a job with a dress code — but if you can, in the words of the world’s great fashion guru, “make it work”, we would love to see that happen.
So — What will wearing all white on April 2nd mean to you?