Formal Shorts

Yesterday, out back of the Corner Pub, I saw a woman in formal shorts.  Well, maybe not formal, but definitely dress shorts.  They looked like suit pants that had been cut off and hemmed at mid-thigh.

I am no fashionista, but this is quite possibly the ugliest thing I’ve ever seen a “sophisticated” woman wear on purpose.

If what you’re doing requires a suitcoat, you cannot cheat and wear shorts and expect to look like a serious business person.

I will say, though, that maybe she could have made it work if she were wearing some kind of light sweater, but even then, she’d have looked like a cruise director.

20 thoughts on “Formal Shorts

  1. I can’t even express to you how hard I laughed when I saw the formal short/suit coat combination. I mean, if you’re going to go to the trouble of putting on a coat, why are you also going to wear shorts? Maybe I could have let coulattes slide, but shorts?You mean the tights without any other thing on the lower body trend? Yeah, that makes me cringe, too.

  2. Maybe she was trying to channel Eleanor Powell. Any outfit that looks like it needs to be accessorized with taps, top hat, and cane is off my list.

  3. You know, if the shorts just barely covered her rear end, and she wore a snug coat top, with a white shirt underneath with the top few buttons untucked and a black lace push up bra, slightly visible, underneath pushing up her boobage, then it might work in a business professional/slutty secretary sort of way.The librarian glasses would be the perfect final touch.But that’s just me.

  4. The Go Fug Yourself girls also hate the formal short thing. was an article in the Chicago Tribune earlier this summer about wearing formal shorts to the office and what types of offices were accepting (boutique PR firms — yes! Fortune 500 offices — no!). I would be laughed off the premises. They’re like skinny jeans — nobody looks good in them.

  5. Unless, of course, they are the girls in Lee’s "Hot for Librarian" fantasy…I think I would be laughed out of the office, too. And at least you’d have some kind of policy and HR would enforce it. But I’d just face derisive laughter until I went home and changed.

  6. A fwe years ago I wore a fake fur vest (over a black turtleneck with a really cool black skirt and tall black boots) and was pretty much laughed out of the office. We’re not terribly fashion forward ’round here. It’s pretty much all Talbot’s all the time. Ugh.

  7. Any outfit that looks like it needs to be accessorized with taps, top hat, and cane is pretty much on my list, so long as the taps, top hat and cane come with. I’m not saying that anyone will want to look at me, mind you, but I am saying that I’ll have fun wearing it.

  8. Never ever ever go to Bermuda. Grown men head up multi-billion dollar insurance companies in those idiotic formal shorts all the time. And they ride around on those scooters. And wear very ornate socks.It’s a whole slice of wierdness, right off our coast. And to make matters worse, the entire country has a dress code. So you can show up in the restaurants in Hamilton or St. George in those godawful shorts, but not jeans. Or other shorts.

  9. Ok, I have both owned and worn formal suit shorts. Not recently and they were linen only for summer and in colors. I wore them in semi-casual office settings during the summer so that I could wear shorts but still look neat and professional. But that was also about 10 years ago.I have seen the dark pinstripe, business looking shorts that they are trying to pass off now and you’re right. Unless you are going for the slightly slutty secretary/business look they don’t work.I did see a lady at my hair salon wearing this look recently and I thought, hmm interesting for fall in the South. She had on a ruffly white shirt(artfully unbuttoned), Navy pinstripe business shorts and very high heeled sandals. The catch is that she was in her late 20’s, about a size 2, darkly tanned and with ridiculously long legs. She is the 1/2% of the population that could pull that look off.

  10. I’m all for anything that encourages "Hot for Librarian" fantasies, but formal shorts are just going too far. Shorts are never formal, end of story.

  11. This is a disturbing trend…disturbing only because it looks so crappy on 95% of the people who wear it, and also because it’s just silly. If you work at a PR firm, or maybe an art gallary…I don’t know. Just make it stop.

  12. Feminists aren’t allowed to like skirts? I wear skirts all the time. It makes it much easier for my legions of fans to "properly worship" me.

  13. No one has tried that, yet, where I work, but we wear coveralls over everything, anyway.Another fashion question: Why do so many ladies go to extreme lengths to put together attractive outfits complimented by expensive hair styling and makeup only to complete the look with pink rubber flipflops? I don’t get it.

  14. Ed, the more you comment here, the more I’m developing this irrational desire to get you drunk and dress you up in women’s clothes.No offense. I’d love to see all my conservative male readers in drag. But you’re quickly joining the ranks of Exador and Kleinheider as men I’d give money to see in a dress.Anyway, my guess is that it’s got to do with the comfort levels of flip flops compared to the comfort levels of high heels.

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