How to spot a crime of fashion

crimes of fashion

Last week, in our random roundup, we made reference to consulting the Fashion Crimes Checklist. What we didn’t mention is that this is an ACTUAL checklist, distributed to trainee officers to help them quickly and easily tell the difference between a crime of fashion and a completely innocent item of clothing. It might help you one day, too, so without further ado, allow us to introduce…

The Crimes of Fashion Checklist: How to spot a crime of fashion in progress.

Spotted a potential fashion infraction? Not sure whether to call The Fashion Police, make a citizen’s arrest, or simply look the other way? Just ask yourself the following questions…

1. Could you wear a diaper under it?

Harem pants, and all other incidences of “drop crotch” clothing are deemed fashion crimes of the highest order. There are no exceptions, and no excuses: if your suspect could easily fit a diaper in the crotch area, you’re looking at a crime of fashion, and it must be arrested immediately.

Conclusion? It’s a crime of fashion. 

2. Is it attached to another item?

Under Fashion Police law, no item of clothing is permitted to be permanently attached to any other item of clothing. So sweaters may not be sewn onto skirts, cardigans should not be welded to shirts, and socks and shoes should forever remain separate. If you spot two or more items of clothing which have become permanently joined at the hip (or anywhere else, for that matter), it’s not a cunning way to make it easier to get dressed… it’s a crime of fashion.

3. Can you see right through it?

Clothing is, by definition, designed to cover the body. If an item of clothing fails to fulfil this basic remit, by virtue of being completely see through, it must be stripped of the definition “clothing”, because it’s NOT clothing: it’s a crime of fashion.

4. Is it underwear?

Underwear is not outerwear. If underwear is being worn as outerwear it is a crime of fashion. 

5. Is it hard to tell whether it’s a dress or a top?

This one is slightly trickier, and there’s definitely some wiggle room, but in general terms, if you have to ask yourself whether a garment is a skirt or a top, the likelihood is that it’s neither: it’s a crime of fashion.

6. Would a toddler wear it?

Again, this one isn’t always easy to call, but The Fashion Police take the act of Dressing Like a Toddler seriously, so if you come across an item of adult clothing which looks better suited to a two-year old, it’s not definite, but it’s probably a crime of fashion.

7. Does it have a “window”?

Clothes don’t have windows. Only houses have windows. And, OK, offices and shops and other buildings. If an item of clothing is found to contain a “window” (generally a window through which the wearer’s underwear can be viewed: see point 4, above), there’s a good chance it’s a crime of fashion. A REALLY good chance.

8. Is it a pair of leggings?

It might NOT be a crime of fashion, but…

9. Are they being worn as pants?

They are a crime of fashion.

10. Is it nightwear?

As with the “underwear” rule, above, nightwear is not permitted to be worn in public. This includes all incidences of adult onesies in public, PJs in public, and the wearing of a dressing gown and slippers to pop to the shop. Put on some clothes, or you’re committing crimes of fashion. 

11. Would it pass the “curtains” test?

Could the item in question easily pass for a pair of curtains? There are exceptions to this rule, but in many cases, possession of curtain-characteristics is a tell-tale sign of a crime of fashion.

12. Is it Crocs?

It’s a crime of fashion. Enough said.

Of course, this list is far from conclusive. Just because your suspect item doesn’t meet any of the above criteria doesn’t mean it’s innocent: not by a long shot. New, and ever-more horrifying items of clothing are being created on a daily basis, and there is no limit t what Jeffrey Campbell fashion designers can dream up. Our best advice to you, then? Be always on your guard, never wear Crocs, and if in doubt… CALL THE FASHION POLICE.


1 Comment

  • February 1, 2013


    Hi Amber

    I loved the image from this post so much I’m using it at work today to demonstrate to a bunch of straight thinking science nerds how to get messages across clearly in novel ways. Promise I won’t use it to sell anything, or use it in external presentations, have left your watermark on & have given you full credit on the slide. Let me know if you’d rather I didn’t do thisd


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