The Urban Dictionary, not exactly a paragon of virtue or political correctness has many explanations for dungarees. Two of the most offensive are:
- A turd that has been sitting in a toilet collecting water for at least three days. This waterlogging, as it is known, creates a sponge-like appearance and as a result, the turd becomes swelled up to a ghastly size.
- An item of clothing that can be worn only by three groups of people, namely lesbians, plumbers and the pregnant.
Originally an item of workwear clothing, dungarees have been on the sartorial radar for quite some time. Featuring in some of the fondest of our televisual memories, dungarees have modestly covered some of our favourite TV characters’ groinal areas down through the years. From Henry Fonda’s crotch-grabbers in John Ford’s The Grapes of Wrath to Neighbours‘ feisty hoyden mechanic, Charlene Robinson (played by Kylie) and Will Smith in The Fresh Prince with his nipple-grazing one strap on-one strap off ‘rees (his state of undone strappage a sure-fire sign that he’s ready to get fresh), it’s safe to say dungarees are one of fashion’s most divisive of trends yet seem to retain an unrivalled longevity in the annals of sartorial history.
You may be sceptical as to how any adult with a heartbeat can legitimately don an item of clothing with so much fabric it would easily swathe a pregnant woman, without harbouring some serious misgivings about her age. Admittedly, as already mentioned in a previous post, Spring Mutton dressed as Lamb, I have an unhealthy obsession with any form of clothing that has a bib, two straps and is an all-in-one-piece. Suck on that Freud. The onesie element particularly appeals to me as someone who immediately changes into a tracksuit (albeit a Wildfox model) the minute she gets home, thus alleviating any thrall of passion she may incite in her hirsute live-in hunk. You may have some serious concerns about this trend, all of which I will tackle below in a questions-and-answers style list because let’s face it, who doesn’t love a good list?
1. Will onlookers immediately assume I am an advocate of some Dr. Phil-worthy form of infantilism and banish their children from making direct eye contact with me?
Answer: No, but paired with your 90s plastic dummy necklace and some white leather Nike Air Max runners, they may assume that you are selling MDMA at a Le Galaxie gig or that you frequented the likes of Creamfields and did foundation Home Economics for the Leaving Cert. Yes, they did have foundation level Home Economics in the 90s.
2. Can I wear them with one strap down a la Will Smith in the Fresh Prince?
Answer: Absolutely not, unless you are planning to get fresh or are about to perform a monologue from To Kill a Mockingbird in which case you are much too old to be doing anyway and probably a bit of a buzz-kill.
3. Can I wear them with Timberland/Caterpillar boots and some side-boob action?
Answer: No, unless you are Rihanna, (Hey Ri-Ri if you’re reading this post) you will look like you are about to dangerously whip out a painter’s brush to vigorously perform some D.I.Y.
4. Will I look more Olivia Palermo/Alexa or Marion from Bosco/one of the Dexy’s Midnight Runners?
Answer: Who cares? They all clearly look equally boss.
5. Can I wear with a Breton tee and some ballet pumps/loafers?
Answer: Yes, as long as you accessorize with a string of garlic around your neck, a demi baguette and a beret, this is a fail-safe look.
Dungarees: H&M, €19.95 available currently in stores. Online here.
T-shirt: H&M, €19.95 in stores now.
Shoes: Penneys/Primark, €17, currently in stores.
Bag: Penneys/Primark, €8, currenly in stores.
Earrings, palm cuff: Penneys/Primark, €1.50, €3.
Ring: Om Diva.
Hat: Folkster, approximately €20.
Basically dungarees+me=big happy head!