After a year of spending all your working hours in a pajama and dressing up only the upper half of your body for the occasional Zoom meetings, it feels strange to have to wake up early in the morning, shower, and power-dress for work. You haven’t touched your office suits for the past year since the pandemic began. You’ve been staying at home, unmindful of the fact that office fashion has forever changed because of the coronavirus.
Like many past events in history, big global events such as revolutions, depression, health crises, and war have impacted what people wear. It is partly because of ideologies and emotions and partly because of technology and trade. After World War I, women began wearing glitzy dresses while they were introduced to pants after the Second World War. Then, it also became politically incorrect for men to follow aristocratic fashion during the French Revolution when people were literally starving.
So what now that the modern generation is faced with the biggest threat to their existence? At a time when social media is revolutionizing society, the coronavirus pandemic made it all stop. Businesses closed, and society came to a halt. Whatever progress fashion should have made in 2020 will forever be unknown. Now that offices are beginning to open their doors, why are people finding it hard to dress?
Who Are You?
Admit it; the pandemic has changed you. No matter how big or small, it has changed who you are as a person. Even the way you spend money is different now. Imagine going to a women’s clothing shop before and spending thousands of dollars on clothes. You cannot imagine doing that now because who knows what will happen in the future? You might lose your job, or your business might close. You realized you have to be prudent with how you use your money.
Look at your closed. You’ll be surprised that you barely know this person who wore all these dresses and suits. Did you wear that short pencil skirt to work? Did you wrap a necktie around your neck every day in the past decade? How did you survive the commute every day? You don’t know yourself anymore after more than a year of on-and-off isolating, quarantining, masking, and distancing. Besides, you either gained or lost a lot of weight in the past year, so these clothes don’t fit anymore.
Brighter and Bolder Colors
Isn’t the past year depressing enough for people not to wear sad colors anymore, such as gray, brown, and black? Now that people are back in malls, offices, and tourist spots, they will want to celebrate being able to spend time in these spaces again. One of the ways they can do that is to show their joy through clothes. They will wear brighter and bolder colors such as orange, yellow, and fuchsia pink in the office because this is a form of self-expression and cultural revolution.
Comfort Power Dressing
But of course, comfort will still be an integral element of power dressing in a post-pandemic world. The office remains an uncomfortable setting no matter how much employees started to hate working from home. Power dressing will mean the use of cashmere-blend fabrics that can produce softer suits. It means athleisure; it means going from the gym to the office with only a blazer as the difference.
Forget about belted pants. People will want to wear garter waistlines, so they can comfortably sit on them for eight or more hours. They want long lines, collarless blazers, and flared pants. The idea is to be as comfortable and fashionable as possible, so loose silhouettes will be a thing.
People who used to be very conservative with their fashion sense will now be bolder in the office. Now that they’re back at work, they want to show that they are unafraid. After a year of basically fearing for their lives, people want to show themselves (and maybe COVID-19 even) that they are tougher than they seem. They’re also going to embrace youthfulness. If there’s one thing the pandemic made people realize, it’s their own mortality. With the pandemic still around but with a better understanding of it, people will want to express their youthful vibe through clothes.
Don’t people deserve to have fun with their fashion after the past 20 months? Experimenting with fashion is one way to express yourself, so don’t be afraid to go out there and style yourself the way you want. As long as you dress respectfully for client meetings and report presentations, your bright orange trench coat should not scare away your colleagues.