Monday, June 25, 2012

Return of the Summer Whites...

Not too long ago, summer whites were a ritual of summer. They were once a common sights while relaxing and trying to stay cool during those hot summer months which seem to plague much of the East Coast of America.

Today there are still some places where summer whites are still required. Since 1877, The All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet club has required all white, or mostly white clothing to be worn. The only major tennis tournament still played on grass and without advertising around the courts, the Championships, known to most of the world as Wimbledon, is a annual reminder of the traditional white attire of summer sport and recreation.

Even today, there are some places in America which still require that white clothing be worn on tennis courts and croquet courts. And though these may not be easy to find, it does not mean the lack of such requirements is a prohibition to wear them where they are not required.

Now with summer officially upon us, there can be no doubt that white clothing is appropriate to wear and enjoy. An on the tennis or croquet court or off, there is a simple elegance about summer whites.

White bucks are the classic white summer shoe. Made of buckskin which is actually specially treated leather to give it a suede-like appearance and it dyed white. The soles of the shoes are traditionally made of brick red rubber and a "chalk bag" is used to keep the shoes white, rather than traditional polishes and cremes.

The traditional white summer trouser ranges from white ducks to white poplin. 

White ducks are made using cotton duck, which is a fairly heavy plainly woven cotton cloth. While rather versatile in the more northern summer seacoast communities and mountain lake vacation spots, white ducks are much too heavy to wear in those areas in further south.

White poplin trousers and perhaps the best solution for summer white is those places where the heat and humidity of summer seem almost oppressive at times. A pair of these made of 5.9 ounce poplin cotton is the perfect way to stay stylish and cool during the summer.

So, while the rest of the world might have abandoned the idea of the summer whites, I still hold on to them and one more symbol of a slower pace of life where those long hot days of summer are meant to be enjoyed and savored as they once where when we were younger.

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Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Long Live The Queen!

It is at times like today when even the average American feels a sense of awe and wonder at the British Monarchy.

Today, Her Majesty The Queen, celebrates the Diamond Jubilee of her reign. She is the second longest British Monarch, with only Queen Victoria having reigned longer.

Since 1952, Queen Elizabeth has reigned over the United Kingdom, a constant symbol of national identity, through a variety of political changes in the British government between the Tory and Labour Parties. Yet, regardless of national political dominance in Parliament, The Queen has remained a constant symbol and reminder of British national identity.

As an American, I like many fellow Americans, have a great respect and admiration for Queen Elizabeth, and her incredible ability to make herself both regal and accessible to the general public.

She is a grand example of a true modern monarch, not someone stuck in the past, but in touch with the present and looking towards the future.

So, on this day, I'd simple like to say, "Long Live The Queen."

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