As summer moves into autumn, it can be difficult to know what to wear, especially when a fabulous British summer, like the one we’re enjoying now, offers us severe weather warnings, insane storms and flash floods.
Enter the long sleeve T-shirt – the perfect versatile garment for summertime. Worn with shorts it looks neat but not overly formal and with jeans or a pair of trousers it still looks summery without leaving you shivering with cold.
The great thing about long sleeve T-shirts is that the sleeves can always be pushed up or rolled if you’re feeling a little too warm, or lowered again if the weather becomes chilly. A short sleeved T-shirt or vest can also be layered over the top of a long sleeved one if things become really arctic.
Another great advantage of the long sleeve variety of T-shirt is their suitability for work wear. If you’re heading out straight from work to a party or barbecue or just to soak up a few rays in the park, you can wear a plain long sleeve T-shirt to the office and nobody will raise an eyebrow, it’s both smart enough for work and yet casual enough not to look as if you’re thinking about what you’re going to do after work, but it will still look perfectly fine when you’re out and about, enjoying yourself.
The long-sleeve T-shirt used to be the preserve of the Canadian joke (along with the long underwear with the flap at the back) which said it was so cold in Canada that even summer clothing had long sleeves!
Today though, the long-sleeved T-shirt has stepped out of the shadows and become one of 2009’s top sellers.
One reason for the long-sleeved T-shirt’s sudden popularity is the recession. People looking for work are being told by consultants and employers alike that certain things: piercings, tattoos, unkempt hair, can cost them a job at interview. And with it being a buyer’s market, even when an interview requires only casual wear, people are taking care to cover up tattoos when going for interviews.
Equally, once you get into the workplace, clothing is becoming more formal and this is again the effect of recession. When money is tight, customers like to be treated with courtesy and formality becomes more important. Long-sleeved T-shirts are becoming increasingly popular as work-wear because they give the impression of a more well-dressed work-force which in turn gives the impression of more politeness and – perhaps subconsciously – a greater investment in the company which implies a more substantial business in times where any straw in the wind can cause people to wonder if a company or organisation will survive the recession.
Finally, long-sleeve T-shirts have been popularised by bands like Kings of Leon, so they are considered cool as well as practical. And in a British summer, recession or no recession, that can be a good thing …