DebConf16/Clothing and Dress code
 temperature and clothing-comfort from DebCamp16 IRC #debconf channel
Long-sleeve shirts, sweaters, leggings, scarfs and hats are appreciated for indoor comfort; not just outer-wear because only localized space heating is available indoors. (Warm the person not the room). T-shirts are being hidden under layers of clothes and can rarely be shown off except during the day in the sun. Morning posts coordinate best locations to move laptop-based hacklabs when sunshine appears in various rooms. Air is crisp and newly-awake people speak joyfully of sun on balconies. Hot coffee, tea and soup are also being enjoyed. Rainy days keep many indoors, but daytime sun can be very warm and layers come off. --Delib (talk) 18:53, 1 July 2016 (UTC)
 Capetown and DebConf dressing advice from locals and historical discussions on Debconf-Discuss
DebConf is a 'anything goes' conference, you can be as formal or informal as you like, you'd probably get away with being naked too. Most attend in 'geek gear': cargo shorts and a T-shirt (reflecting summer wear in previous Northern-Latitude conferences), but it's really up to you, wear what is comfortable and reflects your person. Some like to dress fancy, really, anything goes. As was discussed on the team T-shirt thread, natural fibres are more odour absorbent and keeps one comfortable for longer. DebConf days are never-ending and full of concentration and activity, so dress for that.
As for South African culture, we're an odd combination of prudish and open... For the sake of the conference, you could still get away with most things, but if you lived here it may eventually wear you down. The more affluent areas of Cape Town, which is where the conference will be held, is probably the most liberal place in (South) Africa, and anything will be embraced, clothing wise. I guess covering up a bit more is respectful to the more traditional people, but as for colours and textures, and styles, anything goes. Especially if accompanied by a warm smile!
Weather wise, T-shirts are invaluable. It can get cold, but more often than not it's a balmy 15 - 20 degrees Celsius, sunny and windless - perfect working weather! When it's cold it's a type of wet, muggy cold. I would suggest layers of thinner, 'undershirt' / T-shirty materials, a light fleece-type thing or jersey, maybe a bigger jacket or windbreaker and then a scarf and beanie does a lot of good, rather than one piece of bulk clothing (because then you'll either be too hot or too cold and never just right).
Debian and DebConf is very respectful of personal choices and life style.
So any dress (or lack of it) is accepted, as long it is not done as a pure provocation. But venues could restrict our liberal dress code (it happens, but it is seldom).
Traditionally we have people walking bare foot, other people going without shirts, and nobody complained. These people were having normal discussion with other people with formal dressing (we have also people who prefer to wear formal dress). Most of attendees will wear t-shirt (and many t-shirts are Debian, DebConf or free software related).
Because of DebConf 7 and the official kilt in that conference, some attendees wear at DebConfs the Debian kilt. (Good people doesn’t ask if they wear something under it). People will have no problem with seeing people in kilts, or people they would label as male in female dress, or vice versa, or very colourful clothes... I think nudity may offend some, but I don't know if they would take action or let you know. So if you do choose to go naked, please pack some clothes in case. Nudity is context specific of course, so example showers and swimming in nature are different than conference talk halls.
So, the general rule: wear what you like. Nobody will be too formal or not enough formal for any part of DebcConf (as speaker, as attendee, for conference dinner, etc.).
Good point. Venues at UCT and most of South Africa are fine as long as it is not provocative, especially in the racist sense.
As an example of what can be worn, Laugh It Off was a company that made cheeky shirts. It is acceptable to wear these anywhere: http://www.springleap.com/blog/laugh-it-off-funny-t-shirts/ (I guess many of these are very local) http://mg.co.za/article/2005-05-27-laugh-it-off-wins-case-against-sab their website seems to be down: www.laughitoff.co.za
Barefeet is allowed - I seldom wear shoes :) I do keep a pair of shoes in my bag, but have maybe needed to put them on once or twice before going into the more fancy restaurants. Winter is cold and in my old age I tend to wear shoes sometimes now.