On Wearing White Gloves

I've always thought of white gloves as a little bit marvelous and a little bit magic.  How on earth did ladies keep themselves tidy enough to wear them?  Imagine sitting on the subway without ever holding the railing or managing to never touch your face or lips and mark up those gloves with lipstick.  They're so old fashioned that I doubt that they'll make a come back, but I did buy a pair a year ago and just putting them on makes me sit a little straighter.  They're wonderful to wear to a Springtime church wedding ceremony, if you have one coming up.  But like any bit of clothing history, there are rules, dah-ling.

White kid gloves are the dressiest out there and they are available for purchase today at places like Sermoneta Gloves (Madison Avenue, Newbury Street and Rome).  White cotton was common back in the fifties and sixties but I've never seen a pair worth having today.  According to the powers that be, gloves should be "new and absolutely spotless".  Women who are wearing gloves keep them on during a receiving line at a wedding.  But in other instances of handshaking or greeting, a woman should remove the glove on her right hand and hold it in her left while she shakes hands.  (See how Jackie holds her son's hand ungloved?)  It's very improper to wear gloves while dining.  Remove them for cocktail hour, tea time or a meal.  Long gloves are laid on the back of a woman's chair at dinner.  Short gloves can be stored in her purse.  Long gloves (especially those fastened with buttons) can remain on during a cocktail hour but should still be removed for a meal.