Slogans In LAS VEGAS: Let Your Clothes Speak For You

Credits: Photo - Anonymous, Styling - Sarah G. Schmidt, Location - Caesars Palace Casino, Las Vegas


On my most recent trip to Las Vegas something stood out to me in a way I had never noticed before. This is a city that can be described as the best and the worst of western, specifically American, culture. Anything goes. It is the least judgmental place I’ve been. You can do almost anything here as long as you have the cash. To bring my point home, you’ve likely heard the city’s slogan, “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”

Most people pack clothing for the pool and nights out on the town. Others buy their duds there. Again, anything goes. One can wear sweatpants or cocktail attire at the very same event. No one really cares how casual or formal you are dressed (well of course I do but that’s not the point I’m getting at).

I have shared that the amazing power of clothing is that you can say so much about who you are without uttering a single word. Or, as I saw this past weekend, you can take it a step further and let you clothes actually speak for you.

For any Vegas goer’s out there have you noticed the massive volume of words strewn across hats, shirts, and bags? I’m not just talking about a logo-plastered garment, that’s a whole other thing, I’m talking about expressions. Call them tags, slogans, or catch phrases. Same, same. Have you ever seen:

“Flawless” on two friends matching tank tops?

Or how about a giggling bridal party with matching “#SQUAD” strewn across the front of their deep v neck T shirt?

Or the politically charged, “Make America Great Again” trucker style hat paired with, wait for it, stars and stripes American flag inspired board shorts?

These are example of people who definitely want their clothes to tell you who or what they believe in. Even if that sartorial bravery is just for the weekend away in Sin City.

Novelty stores are busy places on the strip. Full of slogan stuff just like this. "YOLO" flip flops here… A printed “I <heart> Las Vegas!” on repeat pool tote there… "Suns out, guns out" tank tops over there... You name it, they sell it. They take advantage of the impulsive nature of tourists and tap into the desire to spend carefree. 

Bars, stores, malls, restaurants, kiosks, concerts all sell merchandise to help you say whatever it is want to say. Even the street promoters of sexual services have words across their clothing urging passerby to stop. It's a ”hey, you, arrange for your sex worker here!” type message.

Part of me appreciates the straight forwardness of, “this is what I want you to see when you look at me.” Another part of me thinks it’s just so lazy and abrupt.

I get it. No speaking required. Don't overthink it; just keep your mind turned off and let them enjoy their trip.

Give up so easily, style-charged Sarah? Yes and no. It’s comforting to know that it will pass. Come Monday, when most of the folks head home to their lives, they’ll tuck away their word splattered garments. They shove them far, far away in the backs of their closet never to be found again and focus on what's more important: nursing their hangovers.