They might refer to them as 'luxury casualwear', 'active essentials' or 'supermodel off duty looks', but after months of surrendering to our confinement dressed solely in tracksuits, there's no pulling the wool, or in this case, brushed cotton over our eyes.
How will the pandemic change fashion? It’s the question we’ve been asking ourselves for the last ten months. Real-life and the act of dressing for it seems like a distant memory now and this new reality has been going on for so long that we've managed to fall in and out and back in love again with athleisure.
A spike in Covid-19 cases, a third lockdown and, well, January has us abandoning all thoughts of slipping into the crisp cotton shirting and palate-cleansing denim that are so synonymous with transitioning into the spring-summer season any time soon.
Instead, as we face into another six long weeks of level 5, what we wear will inevitably require some stretch.
An thankfully, be it through choice or necessity, many of our favourite fashion brands are moving into the new category of 'sadwear'.
Coined by Esquire magazine's style director Charlie Teasdale, it can be used to characterise clothes that "make us feel better when we're sad, specifically born out of the existential ennui of lockdown".
So despite its moniker, 'sadwear' is actually a mood-booster and encompasses comfortable items for home and the occasional trip to the supermarket.
Here's a list of the fashion brands making us happy by embracing the 'sadwear' trend.
The recently launched line of 'active essentials' from the Danish influencer-turned-fashion-entrepreneur Anine Bing includes to sloth-to-street items such as sweatshirts and leggings, as well as performance pieces, all “made to mix and match with your current wardrobe”.
Shop: Anine Bing Sport
Rotate Birger Christensen
Copenhagen-based brand ROTATE Birger Christensen better known for its loud party dresses than its loungewear has too tapped into 'sadwear'. Dubbed 'Sunday,' the capsule collection is sustainably-minded and includes relaxed hoodies and oversized sweatpants in bold colours.
Shop: Rotate Sunday
Coming in hot from Sleeper, the brand responsible for designing pyjamas made for both staying at home and going out, is (and we quote) an athpleasure™ collection (!?) Paying homepage to the late Lady Diana's iconic off-duty style with 'a 'fit for a princess', detachable cotton collars accompany the two-piece sweatsuits.
Not as recent a move for the ultimate Scandi brand but still worthy of inclusion, Ganni presented its 'Software' line last October to the delight of cool-girls everywhere. Consisting of tees, sweatshirts, jogging bottoms and hoodies - in pleasingly pared-back shades - the line is sustainable too, representing a big leap forward for the brand in terms of traceability.
Shop: Ganni Software
Never Fully Dressed
Chances are you'll have already heard of British brand Never Fully Dressed. It started out life as a market stall, but it wasn't long before the label exploded on social media thanks to a much-hyped leopard-print wrap skirt. Now, with working from home still the norm, NFD has diversified into louche loungewear but the slightly-chic knitted variety.
Love Shack Fancy
Love Shack Fancy, the Manhattan-born brand with a very clear aesthetic of romantic florals and whimsy frills has collaborated with Beach Riot on some wearable romance. The latter is known for its brightly coloured swim and workout wear, so this limited-edition collaboration which launched earlier this month, featuring loungewear, one-pieces and sets did not disappoint.
Main image: Ganni
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