Monday, 22 February 2010

Comfort vs. Style

From top: February wishlist - images courtesy of and Topshop
Sports luxe at Alexander Wang, Spring/Summer 2010. Source:
Shirts galore at Viktor & Rolf. Source:
Since I started working for myself in October 2009, I have spent the vast majority of my working days in my office at home. As painful as it is for this girl to admit, I have really let my standards slip when it comes to putting together stylish yet comfortable looks for everyday, instead being lured by the pull of what was once my style nemesis: the sweat pant.

When I worked in a company office, everyday was an opportunity to dress up, and I favoured a kind of deconstructed Mad Men style: a classic pencil dress with ridiculous heels and clunky accessories; a strapless prom dress over a shirt, all cinched in with an elaborate waist belt. Essentially classic office basics with a twist. The look still managed to be conservative and office-appropriate, but it was edgy enough that it satisfied my need for expression (a favourite example was after the House of Viktor & Rolf exhibition, where Al and I were so inspired by the shirt above that we vowed that our outfits the next day would comprise a minimum of two shirts and basically as much V&R craziness as we dared brave!)

When I was 17, my friends marvelled at the fact that I didn't own a single pair of jeans. My early style definitely pulled inspiration from the Old Hollywood films and trashy 80s TV that I used to watch with my Grandmother: Katharine Hepburn-refinement mixed with Joan Collins-glamour (Joan gets credit/blame for my love of over-the-top costume jewellery) This was the late 90s, and I found that casual dressing was almost a step too far: that it was almost too difficult to work out how to make my friends' core pieces of t-shirts, jeans and Converse work in a way that spoke to me. I have long since given in to the pull of denim, but my latest project is to find a new home-working wardrobe that marries those two apparent opposites of comfort and style.

Clockwise from top:

1. L'Agence Black Jersey T-shirt dress
2. Tapeet Crochet Sandals
3. Vionnet Cuff
4. Falke Knee High Socks
5. Topshop Oversized Grey Jumper
6. Michael Kors Mini Short
7. Alice + Olivia Striped Skirt