Each week, the Open Thread newsletter will offer a look from across The New York Times at the forces that shape the dress codes we share, with Vanessa Friedman as your personal shopper. The latest newsletter appears here. To receive it in your inbox, register here.
Hello and happy day five of the United Nations climate change conference in Bonn, Germany. Apparently, 2017 was one of the three hottest years on record. I’m not surprised. Are you?
Once upon a time way back in September we used to pack away our summer clothes, get out the fall wardrobe and do the Big Switch, but its November and the weather is still so unpredictable you pretty much need access to your entire closet at all times.
Which is one of the most obvious arguments for the reality of climate change any of us experience — but hey, who’s lobbying? (Ahem.)
In any case, it can get very confusing, in part because the whole concept of seasons has essentially gone out the window. Also because most offices seem unable to adjust, and have either had the heat on for the last few weeks and been unbearable, or were still air conditioning, in which case they were freezing.
Either way, this is the time of year when layers start to come into play. You can keep wearing the lighter clothes you’ve been wearing, but layered on top of thin silk bodysuits or long underwear. For those who, like me, have trouble with the tights segue, try knee-high boots with thicker socks underneath and a knee-length skirt, reducing skin exposure. Or just wear pants for a while and eat a lot of soup to warm your core.
The good news is, you get to get your sweaters out and swaddle yourself up, which has certain psychological benefits that should not be underestimated. And this is when the suit — which during warmer weather can feel overly formal and conservative — really comes into its own. All of which is to say: It’s time for power and comfort in clothing. That’s the upside.
Clothes To Take Anywhere You Dream Up: Flared denim, studded suede and laid-back boots to carry you through many adventures. See more dreamy fashion — as well as other highlights from T’s travel issue.
Your Style Questions, Answered
Every week on Open Thread, Vanessa will answer a reader’s fashion-related question, which you can send to her anytime via email or Twitter. Questions are edited and condensed.
Q: My husband and I will be attending a destination wedding in early December in the Caribbean. The rehearsal dinner will be a “white” dinner. The wedding suggests “wedding beach” attire. Can you offer suggestions for both my husband and myself? – Susan from Boston
A: Speaking of warm…two key pieces of advice:
1) Flat sandals. For both of you. Otherwise you will be shaking little bits of grit out of your shoes all night.
2) “White” can be pretty broadly interpreted. In the same way the Inuits have many words for
snow, there are many kinds of white. There is bone white, ivory, cream, eggshell, vanilla, opalescent white — you get the idea. So there are more options within this seemingly narrow color scheme than you might expect.
For your husband, I would opt for a pair of cream-colored khaki-like pants and a linen shirt in a different shade. It’s a little cliché, but it also works, and disaggregated, each piece is easy to incorporate into a wardrobe afterward. (There is nothing more frustrating than spending a lot of money on wedding attire you only wear once.)
For you, however, I would skip the usual hippie-slip-dress-in-the-sunset look (or a caftan, for that matter), and channel your inner Lauren Bacall: think palazzo pants or pajama dressing, some chunky gold jewelry for contrast and a cardigan to toss over your shoulders if it gets cool. Cotton jersey or intentionally crinkled silk would work best, and survive a trip in a suitcase. — VANESSA FRIEDMAN
“I had no recollection.” Attorney General Jeff Sessions is testifying about Russian contacts. Watch live and follow updates.
Mr. Sessions is almost certain to be asked to clarify his past statements in light of recent disclosures that members of the Trump campaign had contacts with Russia.
Spurned by ESPN, Barstool Sports Is Staying on Offense
The insurgent media company has built a devoted following of what it sees as “average” sports fans: unruly, occasionally toxic and aggressively male.
Analysis: A new investigation of Hillary Clinton would undermine longstanding norms.
If Attorney General Jeff Sessions or his deputy authorizes a new investigation of Hillary Clinton, it would undermine standards that have been in place since Watergate.
Justice Dept. to Weigh Inquiry Into Clinton Foundation
Officials are looking into whether a special counsel should investigate reports of misconduct at the foundation, as well as the Obama administration’s uranium deal with Russia.
It raises questions about whether President Trump is trying to use the Justice Department to investigate his political rivals and distract from the investigation into his presidential campaign.
A Statue Stirs to Life in Washington Square Park
A man’s unusually small size, which invited the jeers of bullies in his youth, became a key to his role as a “living statue” in Greenwich Village.
I Believe Juanita
Coming to terms with Bill Clinton and right-wing disinformation.