As if every other day of the week isn't casual enough. I can almost understand casual Friday when the other days of the work week required people to dress in a business-like manner, but now? Even where I work there are some people who take it too far. Ripped jeans and tennis shoes? Flip flops?
Casual, shouldn't that mean business casual? Like this photo of George Clooney. To me that's casual, business casual. Does he look uncomfortable? Nope. I'll tell you why in a bit.
If you work in a professional environment shouldn't what George Clooney is wearing be casual? Not this:
I love The Big Lebowski as much as anyone else, but if you look like that on casual Friday I will tell you to go home. Are they comfortable? Sure, but they're at a bowling alley. Now I don't think people should look like slobs in public either, but that ship has sailed. Gone are the days people dressed up to go out, dressed up to get on an airplane (see this post about air travel) or attend a sporting event. Even the workplace has gone to hell when it comes to people's decisions on what to wear, never mind the total sartorial ignorance in general these days in this so-called modern and civilized world.
I'm not even saying the workplace should look like this, though I'd prefer it:
I love the style of Mad Men, and it was quite a good show, too.
Every Friday someone will ask me why I'm so dressed up, as if I don't dress up every day at work. It's so common now for people to look common, or worse--that they question why I'm dressed up. I don't understand it, personally. I like to call it Suit Up Friday (I always loved Neil Patrick Harris in How I Met Your Mother when he'd say, "Suit Up!").
I take pride in my appearance, but it goes beyond that, I find dressing the way I do to be the most comfortable (for me). Take the first photo, George Clooney is comfortable in those clothes, I don't have to ask him, I know he's comfortable. Why? It goes to tailoring and knowing what one's sizes are. Dress slacks give in the legs and are made of a nice soft material (unlike jeans which are stiff and may chafe--because they're often too tight) which breathes. A button-down shirt is the same, fitted properly won't look like a tent, but also won't be so tight as to prevent easy movement. Dress shoes, well, they're as comfortable as tennis shoes to me. A properly fitted and quality dress shoe will last a long time--I only took 2 pairs of dress shoes (Allen Edmonds) to Paris and I walked everywhere in them--and they had rubber (dainite) soles which look like leather soles from the side and I can run in them if I had to (a bonus for my job).
I do understand there are professions and jobs where it doesn't make sense to wear nice clothes. This is just my opinion, of course, and in some ways I'm happy to be different and stand out from others. Quite honestly, from the 20s through the 50s I would have been just another guy who knew how to dress properly for any occasion.
Below is a typical casual Friday for me--the suit, not the location. I will mention, when that photo was taken I was quite ill, but somehow managed to suit up.