The overall

Today I would like to share my thoughts about one of the most striking garments ever: the overall. This article of clothing which became the identification mark of the working class by the end of the 19th century, made its way to the runway and has been reinvented and converted to a voluminous, fluttering…thing…which is supposed to make you feel very feminine and classy, and yet casual. And after becoming some kind of it-piece, the overall also somehow invaded my neigbourhood during the last summer.
Just to be precise, I’m not talking about tight jeans overalls, here, as I consider them as suits of armour which have the same characteristics as corsets, namely being too tight and stopping you from breathing. But on the contrary to the corset, a tight jeans overall just doesn’t make you look any better. This article is about light summertime overalls, which are supposed to give a nice suggestion of your silhouette and which are made out of silky, almost floating material.
Unfortunately, the kind of overall I just described is the one you can see on the runway shows, where only the most precious clothes and outfits are presented to an exclusive crowd. Of course, grand designers only chose the best materials for their collections and so it’s not astonishing that the outfits you see on the catwalk cannot be compared to what you see in reality, as is the case with the overall.
And so I started wondering, what is it that makes this peculiar piece of cloth so popular?
First of all, I think it makes the girl who wears it feel comfortable. Since it’s wide and bulky, it’s the perfect outfit for a picnic or a BBQ – no bad feeling after having eaten half of the buffet; the overall hides everything under its tent-like largeness. It even protects you from embarrassing too much when you get excessively drunk, since nobody will ever see your underpants even if you ignore your posture and spread your legs sitting in the grass, trying to reach out for the last drop of Champaign in the almost empty bottle on the other end of the picnic blanket. It seems as if the overall is your best friend in all situations. It helps to hide the weak points of your silhouette (sure, because it just hides everything) and it tries its hardest to make you look ladylike, but also casual and uncomplicated. The overall has not been created for unapproachable divas; its history prevents it from ever getting the same status as an elegant dress. It seems more suitable for girly teenage girls who still need to find their style. But still, what kind of statement do you make wearing an overall? The only possible things that I can imagine are “I was too lazy to get dressed”, or “I don’t care”, or “I hate my body” or “My friends forced me to come to this stupid picnic, I actually wanted to spend my Sunday afternoon watching TV and eating tons of chocolate, but now I’m here, and I declare my full disrespect for this event through my choice of dressing”. Well, honestly, nothing of that seems very ladylike or sociable. And that is exactly the reason why I don’t get girls who wear overalls (and who complain that they couldn’t get into that highly fashionable club although they’re always so fashionably dressed).
By the way, there is a funny movie scene which just came to my mind. In the movie, there is pretty Renée Zellweger who wants to seduce some guy and it goes rather well. They’re somewhere where there’s a lot of wood and so he invites her hunting. The only small problem is that Renée Zellweger’s character is from Miami and so she doesn’t have anything to wear to go hunting and so the guy, gentleman as he is, helps her out and gives her that wonderfully terrible overall. Everything is perfect. But, as they arrive in the woods, she needs to pee – which becomes a huge problem, since the overall is zipped on her buttocks and of course the zipper is stuck. It’s weird, I know. Anyway, since she isn’t able to open to this damn thing, she needs to call her gentleman knight who finally cuts her out of the overall. Long story short, she needed help to be able to pee just because of an overall – I think that clearly sums up everything I have to say about overalls. And I’m thinking how great it would be to see more dresses again. Summer dresses, comfortable dresses, in fact, overall addicts wouldn’t even notice the difference, they just need to keep their legs close together. But wouldn’t it be much nicer not to be compared to a clown, anymore, but to have the elegance of Grace Kelly or even a Greek goddess?