I have been raised to believe that clothes are divided into two completely separate groups: "good/nice" clothes (all levels of dressiness) that one wears outside of the house, and less good/house clothes, typically loungewear. As soon as one gets home, one changes into loungewear. The only time one wears "good" clothes at home is when entertaining or expecting company. Conversely, one never goes out in sweatpants and similar - even to run to the grocery store across the street you change into at least into jeans and nicer knit top.

I have not challenged this thinking much for the majority of my adult life. I have obviously noticed than not everyone does the same and enjoyed plenty of looks I would never do on others. With the rise of "Sporty Luxe" look several years ago, I have started occasionally pushing myself to do such a look outside, e.g. built around carefully styled silk joggers. However, I stuck to regular loungewear at home. While I know it is completely psychological, lots of items that are perfectly comfortable outside and I don't even notice them (jeans, underwire bras) start really bothering me the moment I get home and I can't wait to get them off. Similarly, while I am not particularly clumsy outside - I may spill something on myself once in a blue moon, the frequency of such incidents increases significantly at home.

Since the pandemic started in 2020, I stuck to this. We have been WFH exclusively until May 2022. Since my work culture is a bit formal, I kept two ponte blazers (one navy, one black) next to my desk to throw over whatever regular loungewear I was wearing for Zoom meeting. This prolonged loungewear dressing started bothering me last year, when it was obvious that there was no clear end and that hybrid work is going to be the future. So I started to put some effort into dressing the way I call "elevated loungewear", with several guidelines:

  • Wear at home only, nice pair of white slip on sneakers
  • Focus on trendier bottoms, such as dressier/woven joggers, wide leg track pants, pants with regular cuts but made of knits (ponte, double jersey, scuba)
  • Tops can be either classic or more current. Usually they are knitwear, or some kind of knitted topper over knitted top combo. Especially useful toppers are ponte/knit blazers, or hybrid jackets, for example, motos/bombers made of knit materials
  • Since I have a lot of older knitted tops and toppers, that I still like and are in good condition, but I don't feel like wearing outside since I have better/newer stuff, try to incorporate those at least half of the time into WFH outfits, so that they can get enough wear before I can edit them out without guilt
  • A classic loungewear set (e.g. sweatpants and sweatshirt) is OK. as long it is a nicer one with something special about it -cut, color, material. Third piece/blazer encouraged, and required for Zoom
  • I do not stick to my theme I chose for the particular season, but I do stick to the same color palette

Below are several outfits I wore this winter for WFH. The colors are black, cream, grey, purples, teals and burgundy. They are a huge improvement over the regular loungewear. Some I am completely happy with, some less so -usually the ones with several older items. However, I am trying to stick to my plan an wear those items out. I have ideas how to push myself a bit more for the spring season, will post about that some other time.

As usual, I appreciate all of your comments. I am also curious about your approach to dressing for WFH in general.

1) Black faux leather joggers, teal cowl neck top, black ponte blazer-esque topper
2) Black double jersey flare pants, teal ribbed boatneck top, old black military ponte blazer
3) Black & white windowpane joggers, purple tee with ruched sleeves, faded black textured short knit jacket
4) Great cashmere knit set of sweatshirt and jogger pants, grey faux fur zip-up topper - this was on one of those freezing days several weeks ago
5) Charcoal houndstooth joggers, old eggplant tee with open cowl back, old grey knit moto vest
6) Burgundy sweatpants, old charcoal tee, old black knit blazer
7) "Glamorous" eggplant sweatsuit: satin-y sweatshirt and wide leg pants
8) Fancy wide leg faded sweatpants, black top, old silk patterned moto cardigan
9) Black neoprene moto flare pants, black top, old cream zip up sweatshirt jacket.

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