Clothing Remarks


Anna Carey at The Anti-Room got me thinking about us workers-from-home and our often strained relationship with clothing.

I’m in the “slippery slope” school of thought on this one. In other words, what starts off as simply not removing your slippers for work can easily become not removing your pyjamas. From there, it’s a slippery slide to just staying in bed with the laptop. And as the saying goes, she who works in pyjamas, thinks in pyjamas.

OK I just made that one up.

In my experience, what I am wearing for work directly affects my frame of mind and the quality of my output.  For example, imagine what wonderful work you could produce in this get-up:

With hair this adorable and a dress this frilly, what does it matter if I type without looking?

Having said that, I do not sit in my home office in power suits and stiletto heels. As long as my apparel can be fairly classified as outerwear, is clean and sometimes even ironed, and is fit for opening the door in, I consider myself properly kitted out for a good day’s work at the PC.

Lately, however, standards are starting to slip. Advancing age and the mellowing that goes with it means I can justify an increasing degree of slovenliness. Although I have noticed that my slovenliness varies in accordance with the people I expect to encounter:

Postman – pyjamas: not appropriate; dressing-gown: yes, at a stretch; hair brushed: no need.

Childminder – all bets off, even teeth unbrushed is OK.

Female friends – different league; fashionable gear and make-up required to maintain competitive viability amongst peer group.

Family members – a degree of pride is involved here so: pyjamas – no way; dressing-gown – only with good reason, such as having recently given birth or illness; bare feet / slippers – better not, as although seemingly minor, these can be interpreted as little “telltale signs” (of anything from a dip in work levels to full-blown depression).

Children – irrelevant – they are utterly indifferent to what I am wearing as long as I maintain the expected flow of food, drink, cuddles, transport, entertainment and soothing-to-sleep.

I do have one sacred cow when it comes to clothing, though: pyjamas should never, ever be worn to the supermarket, to the bank, at the school gates, or anywhere else in public. Being seen in public in your jammies is only a small  step away from being seen out in the nip, and that is the stuff of a well-known universal nightmare, with very good reason.

No, no. Not even wrong.

No matter how curmudgeonly I become, I hereby declare that I will never sink that low. Amen.

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Posted on July 24, 2010, in Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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