Recently I dashed into a store with the boys in tow to buy a white t-shirt, but walked out with a neon knit in my shopping bag as well. At around $45 I was thrilled to find an inexpensive yet well-cut way to dip my toe into the neon trend.

For its first outing, I took it on an early morning plane trip to Adelaide, where I was spending the School Holidays with the boys and my family. Pulling that ball of brightness over my head, and smoothing it over, I turned to my husband to show-off my new purchase, thrilled with my retail-savviness. His response? A mumbled: “High Vis.

For the uninitiated (which was me till two weeks ago), “High Vis” is as term to describe high-visibility clothing that needs to be worn for safety purposes – think boxy ‘Statement Vests’ in the brightest neon yellow, with reflector strips.

Feeling somewhat deflated by his two word dismissal of my neon knit, I waved it away with a “Pfft, you just don’t get it.

Yet as I walked through the terminal on arrival at Adelaide Airport, it felt like I’d landed into High-Vis World:

The airline marshals were wearing High-Vis Vests.

The guys working on the taxi rank were wearing High-Vis Vests.


The construction site at the airport? High-Vis Vests.


And as I walked up to the desk where we were picking up our hire car, what did the man behind the counter say to me? “High Vis!”


Clearly, men around Australia were not “getting” my neon knit, and probably not the neon trend generally. Perhaps they were suspicious of a woman wearing a colour that, up until recently, had been the sole domain of men who use their arms a lot to provide directions, or were in peril of being bundled over by a forklift?

Regardless, I’ve persisted in wearing that neon jumper over the last two weeks, because the colour does surprisingly lovely things to my skin tone, such as make it look instantly tanned (not so obvious in the ruddy Camera-Phone selfies above). Plus, the slouchy cut of my knit is perfect to wear over jeans, maxis and shorts in this wacky four-seasons-in-one-day kinda weather we are having – buy similar for $53.

The women have oohed and ahhed over it. The tradies try not to make eye contact with me when we’re wearing our matching “High Vis” colours. And last night, as we were picking up random LEGO pieces from the floor together, my husband looked up and said “Hey, I really like you in that neon jumper. It’s grown on me.”


Do you have an item of clothing that men just don’t ‘get’? Do you persist in wearing it, or has it been shoved to the back of your closet?

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  • My fiance doesn’t get the neon thing either. He also hates short dresses with long sleeves, maxi dresses, harem pants and big sunglasses.

    What do men know anyway…?!

    • LOL Jane. It’s cool. I still love it. My kids can spot me a mile away, and I can double as the Lollipop Lady at the school crossing… 😉

  • My hub is not a fan of me wearing my floral pants, especially when I wear them with pastel pieces. He said something about me looking like his Nan… As long I feel comfortable and confident in my outfit, I don’t take much notice. I dress for me, not for him! I do ask him to do a final check though, just to make sure I don’t have my skirt tucked into my knickers or wearing a top inside out…

    • I wish I did that final check thing too, as I have in fact gone out with my gym pants on back to front. That’s another story…
      Your husbands Nan sounds cool! x

  • Totally relate to this! I recently bought my first pair of coloured jeans. Feeling a bit nervous but excited I showed my husband this outfit:
    I asked if he liked it and he was a bit non-committal and quickly exited out of the room. I was a bit worried as he normally likes most things I wear, but then he shortly returned to say: “it’s ok, I do like it, I just had to quickly google it and check you didn’t look like Austin Powers”

    • Awesome story! Next time you wear them you should wear a wig, thick black rimmed glasses and lolly teeth and say “Yeah, BABY!” 😉

  • I’ve been folding high vis shirts from hubby’s washing for 17 years now – just don’t add a silver strip to it and you’ll be right!
    Hubby doesn’t like floral jeans. I LOVE THEM – and when I find the right ones, I’ll be grabbing a pair. I think he can remember when I ran around in stripey or floral tights and tunics in my early twenties, wouldn’t be such a great look now 😉 lol!

    • LOL thanks for the tip. Advice heeded.
      I’ve been keeping an eye out for floral jeans – let me know if you find any great ones!

  • I don’t have any neon clothing (yet), but I have to admit, from a practical standpoint, I’m kinda thinking a top or cardigan in that sort of colour would be great for walking the dogs at night 😉
    But seriously, the colour is not limited to safety gear. That would be like looking at someone wearing white and saying “doctor!”.

    • Yes! Double duty clothing – love the way you think Chrissie!
      And agreed. If I’d added silver strips to the knit (like Marina highlighted) and smoked Winnie Blues THEN, maybe there’s a case… 😉

  • Guys certainly don’t get women’s fashion (for the most part)! Whenever I ask my fiance what he thinks of my outfit, he just asks: “is that what’s in fashion nowadays?”…! Unless it’s short or fitted or low cut (or all of the above), he doesn’t tend to comment!

  • My husband now just says “I’m sure your Mum and [insert friend’s name here] would think it looks great” whenever I wear something vaguely on trend… pffff. BTW – what is your lippy colour in the photos? It’s great!

    • Oh, that’s very covert of him. Nicely played James Bond!
      Mmm, the lippy? From memory, I think that day I used a reddish lipliner (it’s quite old so I can’t tell the brand/colour sorry!) and then topped with my favourite day lipstick at the moment, Revlon Peach, and then a little more liner coloured over it so it’d stay for the flight and kid-wrangling. Thanks for the compliment! x

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