A Rant Against Vague Dress Codes

Who has time for life’s vagueries? With the energy spent worrying about having a dead neighbor on my hands, wondering whether that guy were purposely ignoring me or just left his Facebook open, or making my sassy gay black friend clarify whether he were complimenting Beyonce when he called her performance “ridiculous” I just don’t have a minute to spare on analyzing your dumb dress code. Just because it’s called a code, doesn’t mean it has to be cryptic. Unless you want me to have to hire the guys from the CIA to know whether a tea length halter dress is appropriate for your party, speak plainly, you fuckers.

Recently, I was told to dress elegantly for a party hostessing job. When I asked for further instruction, he said to look put together, but he wouldn’t want me to get my Dior gown dirty. Not helpful.

For New Years, having already been acquainted with the unintelligent straight male party host’s attire desires, I emailed this host and asked “would you rather I dress as professional party worker, or attractive co-ed?”

He said attractive co-ed, and at about 3am on New Year’s day, tried to sleep with me.

So enough with these unhelpful directions! I’m putting a stop to all dress code related confusion with Sonia’s Guidelines for Obvious Vestments: Instructions for Those Who Are Basically Useless

The following are just six examples of what you can find in my yet-to-be published guidebook:

Tasteless Whore: Heading to the club? Your younger sister’s wedding? Go “Operation Desperation.” Own your body. Embrace your sexuality! Drop $30 at Forever 21 for a nightclub dress that will tear in half after one wear because all that dripping vomit loosened the seams. It’s okay! If your attractive days are almost over, if your muffin tops are slowly turning into Yodel rolls, then why not flaunt your stuff one last time? It’s a safe space. So let your breasts come up to your chin and flag down the man of your dreams.

No Sex For You…or You: The name of the game here is modesty. Perfect for funerals, nursing home visits, coffee with that ex who gained forty pounds and is started growing nose hair, No Sex is sure to cover you up from head to toe. Think turtlenecks, long pants, a nun’s habit, or a dress you bought at Ye Olde Gift Shop on your 3rd grade class trip to the Amish country. A girl must not show her goods, lest she be mistaken for a whore (as described above).

This is Just a Detour on My Way to Dine with The Queen: In vague terms, this is what many would refer to as “Elegant.” But let’s be honest, elegant is subjective. To avoid having any guest show up looking like they just exited stage right from their production of Romeo and Juliet, you must tell them that they should dress as if they are on their way to tea with The Queen (or Helen Mirren. Or Judi Dench. Or Cate Blanchett. Whether you prefer royal blood or the British acting elite, that’s your call.) TJDMWDTQ requires careful planning, timeless pieces, and a trip or two to your private vault in the bank to redeem some of those heirloom jewels.

You’re Not Worth Showering For: Often confused for “casual,” YNWSF is just a step above Rolling Out of Bed. You stuck on a pair of jeans, put on clean underwear (maybe), swapped your college t-shirt for something without toothpaste stains, and chewed four Altoids for that just brushed smell before running out the door to meet a friend for coffee. Because you love them, but you’re not trying to date them.

Not a Dr. Who Cosplay Contest: Simply no bow-ties allowed.

Drop $200 on a Dress, Because It’s My Wedding: Your high school prom dress just won’t do for this lavish affair. Even though you’ll only wear it once, it’s time to shuffle off to Bloomingdales and find a gown for your selfish “best-friend’s” wedding. Because she doesn’t care if you can no longer afford to cure your dog’s colon cancer as long as you show up in your finest to witness her walk down the aisle in her heels with the blue bottoms followed by a flock of doves carrying the letters to make up “John and Francie forever.” Ugh, fuck her.

See? It’s so easy to be clear about what you want your guests to look like! So stop hiding behind phrases like “black tie optional” and “barnyard classic.” It’s time to simplify life and turn those enigmatic dress codes into basic dress ABCs.




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