fashion-grannyThis column is going to be a refresher course on two topics that I liken to” the gift that keeps on giving,” kind of like the Christmas fruitcake!

Does not hope spring eternal? Hence my intention is that this repetition of strong answers to valid fashion questions will finally take hold! None of us deserves to be injured by the very sight of a bad spray tan or socks with sandals ever again. I don’t know about you, but my eyes can’t take much more!

Tans are a mainstay of the Lowcountry. We all know that Mr. Sun wants to kill us, so those who get that will stay out from under his rays. This invention of “spray tanning” is quite clever, but…. Here is a past query from a reader and an answer from FASHIONGRANNY that I pray will take hold, as I look around at this Tanorexic phenomenon!



I am considering having a professional Spray-On suntan. Does this process last longer than a do-it yourself over the counter self -tanner?

Signed, Ms. Orange Ankles



Dear Ms. Orange Ankles,

Come on! You must have been in a spray-on booth once to have orange ankles! My immediate advice is don’t go there again! You were robbed!

To my surprise, I don’t have an answer for you taken from my personal plethora of experience!

I just know what I see in regards to spray tans. I have never seen a spray tan that I liked. I am sure that all the folks who own these establishments will not be too happy with me, but the walking advertisements I have seen do have an unmistakable orange glow that’s hard on the eye. Kind of like the Oompa Loompas from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.

What I do know is that the sunbathing will kill you, so if you must change your skin color, a self-tanner is an answer. This option appears safe (read the labels). My advice is, when you see a lady with a beautiful healthy, sunny glow, go up and ask her how she got it. Do whatever she does, bar sunbathing.

My thoughts on tanning are not the ordinary sort. I am old enough to remember the Coppertone advertisements, with the little fair-haired pigtailed girl and her freaky dog pulling her panties down to reveal a tan line! Then you would see in another magazine a woman of color hawking a bleaching cream to lighten her skin! One wanted to be dark, the other light; give me a break!

Watch out! FASHIONGRANNY is getting ready to preach! We were created the way we are supposed to be. Our skin tone is our skin tone. Warmed by the Sun from daily life gives us a rosy and lively hue! This is natural and very becoming, but tanning per se is a FASHION TREND and it is a bad one. Bad fashion is bad fashion. As far as “which tan will last longer?” My question would be: Don’t you want to be the one who lasts longer, and not the melanoma or altered skin state? I want to be the best-looking woman above ground! How about you?


Now, to revisit the topic of socks and sandals. Yes! You heard correctly; we are still dealing with this fashion faux pas. Please people, no more!



Since we’ve moved to the Lowcountry from the Northeast my husband’s dress code is non-existent. He never wears long pants or “real shoes” anymore, just shorts and sandals. My beef is he insists on wearing socks with his sandals! He’s hard on the eye with tall black socks and Birkenstocks! How can I break him of this? I’m embarrassed.


Defense Witness


Dear Witness,

Young Lady, I feel your pain!

The “Look” that your Husband has achieved is found in the Fashion History Books, in the chapter titled, ”When a Blind Man Dresses Himself,” subtitled “Rebel Without a Cause!”

Socks with sandals has never been, and will never be, an acceptable look!

In your husband’s defense, it is true, when FASHIONGRANNY traveled through Germany in the early ‘60s, many Brewmeisters along the Rhine were sporting this dress. I presumed at the time it was a leftover look from a wartime youth hostel or Heidi’s grandfather and let it ride!

Yet, it’s still riding, and we see it more and more in retired men, whom I think have totally given up!

The only time that Socks and Sandals are acceptable is if you have had ALL 10 toes taken by frostbite!

Even then, Can you put on some longs pants, please?

My advice is to be extra nice to Hubby for a week. After he gets over the shock, ask him to play a little game. Put him in front of the mirror in his short pant-sandal-socks get-up. Then, have him change into a pair of cool, classy, casual slacks and a Cole Haan men’s sandal. (Don’t have ’em? Go buy ‘em!) Compare. He should surely bend in your direction! Give him a kiss to seal the deal!

If not? Take him out in the back and …well, you know what to do!!


FASHIONGRANNY loves you all and no doubt loves the variations and individuality of our local fashionistas, variety being the spice of life and all that. Some things just bear repeating!

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