Dressing Alone

Words by: Stephen Pulvirent


When you get ready for a night out, a day on the town, or what have you, it’s not unusual to want to “dress up” for the special occasion. And yes, we all talk about how we dress for ourselves, not for others, but the true test of that is how you dress at home. I’m not beyond donning sweatpants (no elastic ankles though please) and a sweatshirt at the end of a long day, but I certainly don’t feel my best when I do.

This weekend saw me holing up in my apartment to complete a project I have been working on for over year which I’m submitting this Tuesday. There are a few routes one could to dressing for such an adventure, but I’ll highlight the two I chose: elegant lounge clothes and dressing seriously.

The first is one of the great luxuries of life in my opinion. As anyone who has worked from home can tell you, there are few things more luxuriant and enjoyable than getting out of bed in the morning, in proper PJs of course, throwing on the dressing gown and slippers, and remaining that way all day. Whether you still sit at a desk or work from a couch or bed, there is just something cosy and indulgent about the whole matter. Productivity and indulgence rarely intersect, so take the opportunity where you can get it.

Doing this too many days in a row, or two for that matter, can be energy-defeating though. Too much time in one’s PJs goes from privilege to curse very quickly, and suddenly you just feel like a sloth. So, for Sunday’s writing marathon I went for the opposite. I took an invigorating shower and then carefully donned my flannels, oxford shirt, and leather-soled loafers before sitting down at my keyboard. Not exactly “dressing up,” but a little more than an afternoon around the apartment would typically call for. They say you’ve got to dress the part, and in this case I agree. There is something about putting on a real set of clothes that gets your mind ready to get down to business. I almost always wear a tie when I take exams, as I find I feel more focused.

So next time you find yourself at home all day, pick an extreme. Dress up, or not at all – I promise you’ll enjoy the experience.