In Berlin’s central Mitte district, young men in beards and tight pants can be seen on almost every corner. In trendy bars and galleries, it is clear the dress code of the last two decade – jeans, T-shirts and sneakers – has not changed.
Only one aspect of the look has been modified: Suddenly, many hipsters are wearing white T-shirts.
It was particularly noticeable that young men who set the tone in Mitte are wearing unprinted, and, at first glance, completely anonymous white T-shirts.
Have the much-ridiculed and despised hipsters of Mitte lost interest in elaborate clothing? Is the white T-shirt part of the so-called “Normcore” fashion trend, a combination of “normal” and “hard core,” in which a demonstrative display of unpretentiousness is celebrated?
A far more interesting question is: Does the white T-shirt represent a romantic search by young and spoiled men for clothes that look so reduced, minimalist and empty that absolutely nothing can be read into or derived from them?
Is a white T-shirt devoid of history, rebellion or affirmation, a negation of the desire to be young, stupid and beautiful?
Let’s first start with a brief history of the white T-shirt. It is conceivably the simplest of all garments. The classic T-shirt has a straight, slim cut, a round collar and short sleeves at an almost 90-degree angle to the body, forming the letter T.