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Thursday, June 10, 2010

Are Your Shoes Up to the New Standard?

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Thu, Jun 10, 2010 at 5:47 PM

There's all sorts of drum beating happening over on Gawker about the "new standard" of appearance American Apparel is enforcing on its employees and new hires. There isn't anything remarkable to me about a company that's in the business of style taking an active, even controlling, interest in the appearance of the employees representing it, though the coverage wants to imply otherwise. It sounds like a less-Catholic version of the dress code enforced at my high school (you probably get a bonus for shorter skirt lengths instead of detention), and certainly well below the standards of formality and restraint imposed in most offices. What is remarkable is how the fuck they came up with "Classy-Vintage-Chique*-Late 80's-Early 90's-Ralph Lauren-Vogue-Nautical-High end brand" as the baffling description of what the new dress code is going for stylistically. Giving us some clue (not really) are the DOs and DON'Ts provided to the employees regarding footwear. DOs: vintage shoes and heels, booties, boat shoes and sperry loafers (especially for males), American Apparel shoes, and white Keds—but only if they are "impeccably clean." DON'Ts: Uggs, "any winter boots" (really?? any???), flip-flops, gladiator sandals, Converse, Vans, Keds of any other color or less than impeccably clean, moccasins, and "Dock Martins." Uhhh... a ban on Uggs and your standard cheap-o flip-flops I can get behind, but even a cursory familiarity with a magazine like Vogue (could they have possibly picked a less relevant example?) will tell you that the highest of the highbrow shoe lines make, of course, winter boots, gladiator sandals, and oh yes, flip-flops. And the Converse/Vans/Keds/Doc Martens/moccasins thing just seems like shitting where you eat. I could spend all day finding "classy" examples of shoes that don't fit these rules that any American Apparel employee would be lucky to have, even without cracking an issue of Vogue, but then, I got detention a lot. I bet those American Apparel employees are looking forward to a winter full of boat shoes and vintage heels!

snowheels2.jpg

(Things are much more shoe positive over on MOD.)

*The feminine form of "chic" in French some made up shit, which I can only assume is meant as a directive to male employees to femme it up.

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