Last week, social media went haywire when an online debate began over a black and blue (or, perhaps, white and gold) dress.
According to Daily Mail, the viral dress, which has since been dubbed #TheDress, belongs to a British mother named Cecilia Bleasdale. She wore it to daughter Grace Johnston's wedding last month.
It all began when Bleasdale sent a photo of the dress, purchased at U.K. retailer, Roman Originals, to the bride and later to her other daughter, Angie McPhee.
"Mum sent it to Grace to give the dress a thumbs up or thumbs down," McPhee told the Daily Mail. "It was sent originally to my sister, then my mum sent the picture to me, and Grace said, 'Why is she wearing white and gold to the wedding?' We were shocked my mum had chosen a light-coloured dress."
According to Business Insider, Johnston and her then-fiancé also disagreed about the colour of the dress, so they posted a photo of it to Facebook where the debate continued.
That was when friend and 21-year-old Scottish folk singer, Caitlin McNeill, who performed at the wedding, shared it to a Tumblr fan page dedicated to talent manager, Sarah Weichel. From there, the debate just exploded -- with celebrities such as Taylor Swift, Kim Kardashian, Mindy Kaling and Julianne Moore chiming in.
As you may already know by now, the dress is officially black and blue, as confirmed by Roman Originals. The reason so many people saw it as white and gold is likely because of a phenomenon called colour constancy, as explained by a video from AsapSCIENCE.
"People who picture the dress as white have brains who may be interpreting the dress in a blue-lit room, for example -- as in it's near a window with a bright blue sky," the narrator states. "It makes perfect sense then that the white dress would be tinted blue and that the gold color wouldn't really change. On the other hand, the brains of people who see it as black and blue may be interpreting the dress in an artificially lit setting, like somewhere with yellow lights. As a result, the brain sees the gold as just a reflection off of the black and believes the blue has been unaffected."