America's Sloppy Culture: Does Casual Dress Equal Casual Attitudes?

10:48 PM, Jul 11, 2013   |    comments
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  • Courtesy: Forsyth County Public Library
    
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  • Have you ever walked by someone in your office and thought, are you kidding me? Or at the grocery store, you know you've done a double take because you just can't believe someone would wear that!

    Sloppy dressers are everywhere but it wasn't always like this. WFMY News 2's Liz Crawford looked at the good, the bad, and the ugly.

    Glynis Bell is the founder of Dress For Success Winston-Salem. Her team helps under privileged women look their best for job interviews. Bell also has a passion for fashion.

    "I think it has less to do with the economy and more to do with our attitudes. I do think dressing up is a lost art and I don't exactly know how to get back to that," said Bell.

    News 2 found old Forsyth County photos. A grocery store manager in 1964 is wearing slacks and a tie underneath his apron. Female office workers wore dresses and close-toe shoes in the 60's.

    Another photo shows men at a 1947 conference at Winston-Salem City Hall. Everyone was in suits, bow ties, and hats.

    Bell said, "People wore a full suit. They wore a tie, they wore dresses, and women wore pantyhose, they wore hats and gloves and they weren't considered dressed completely without those items."

    Fast forward 50 years and you're more likely to see jeans, flip flops, and khakis passing as professional attire.

    Sloppy dress has become so prevalent, there's a whole website dedicated to the slobs out there. On PeopleOfWalmart.com, you'll find all kinds of people in all kinds of attire!

    "I saw a gentleman who appeared to have been sitting back in his easy chair watching the game and he looked like he ran out of beer and peanuts and he got up, he had on a full set of pajamas, he had on slippers, and a big fuzzy robe, and he was in Walmart," said Bell.

    There's an actual class called Nation Of Slobs taught at Notre Dame University. The professor hopes her class will revive the art of dressing up.

    Glynis Bell thinks the Triad could use the same kind of curriculum. She'd love to see a class like that at a local college here. In the meantime she's focusing on Dress For Success for local women and writing a book about self presentation and dressing to impress.

    WFMY News 2, Forsyth County Public Library, DigitalForsyth.org

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