One of my favorite pre-social-distancing rituals was seeing what everyone was wearing in the office. I’d compliment my friends on well-made choices, some classic, some not. We’d share the stories behind our outfits with each other, and everyone walked away feeling a little more stylish than they had on the commute into the city.
Whenever someone (usually me) had a package (usually a piece of clothing) delivered to the office, we’d discuss the item’s best qualities during our breaks. Getting dressed in an outfit that brought me joy was the highlight of my morning. When we started working from home due to COVID-19, I found myself in uncharted waters. What does one wear when working from home? I’d never been confronted with that question before. At first, I wore pajamas, but then I realized rather quickly that I felt more like myself when I wore real clothes. It is impossible to seize the day when you look like you haven’t gotten out of bed. I didn’t own many casual items of clothing, but I knew I wouldn’t be prepared for a summer at home if I didn’t acquire some soon.
For years, I had abided by my self-made policy of never wearing shorts, but my urgent need for a comfortable, summer-appropriate, casual uniform compelled me to reconsider. Ultimately, I decided that my new work-from-home uniform would be composed of a pair of linen shorts or pants and a button-up shirt of the same fabric. I love the way linen feels when it air dries after being washed. It’s wrinkled, highly textured, and slightly shrunken (if you didn’t buy it prewashed). Why is it so rewarding to iron/steam the wrinkles out? I always press the shirts before each wear, but I let the linen shorts show in their crinkly state.