Rumors of a nation returning to “normal” have forced me to do something I have long avoided while working from home the last two years:
shop for work clothes.
Pre-pandemic, I used to share stories and posts on my IG of myself trying on clothes in midtown Manhattan fitting rooms constantly. It was fun. I actually liked to shop. Post-pan, I won’t step foot into a fitting room and am loathe to stand in a line at most any clothing store waiting to purchase anything. I tried a few days ago. I made a return yesterday.
As one of millions of people who worked from home the last couple of years I’ve gotten more used to ordering clothes on line than I ever imagined.
But since we’re trickling back into our beloved normalized dysfunction, I’ve had to deal with the fact that I need new work clothes. It’s not that I don’t still have the work dresses of pre pandemic fame hanging in my new home closet still. It’s just that that I don’t have any desire to go back to wearing any of them. Even when I was going into the office once a week at the beginning of this year, it was such a ghost town that I was wearing sweatpants and sneakers each time.
Oh the glorious comfort!
But as MGMT would say, it’s time to pretend…again. That’s part of what it means for America to go back to normal. Always has been.
Though there are some things I realize I never want to go back to.
1: padded bras.
I swore off bras during most of the height of the pandemic because they are for the most part, uncomfortable, oppressive straight jackets for breasts and I was fortunate that I could just go without them for a while. And I’m well endowed so It’s not like I don’t understand the need for support but my god, when I put on a bra for the first time to go to some dr’s appointment or physical therapy, it felt so wrong and awful. I found like 3-4 bras with no padding or underwire that liked and just wore those when I had to.
I have a meniscus tear in my right knee so even pre-pandemic, I was playing myself wearing heels but post-pan, after I found my first pair of comfortable ass Sorel sneakers, honey, I don’t even look at heels. And I never understood, as a working woman why every time I went to a shoe store, I would often see the kind of shoes only Carrie Bradshaw would lust after displayed prominently.
Like, no shade to heels to the working women who wear them but f*k, can I get some comfort with these style trends that I can’t relate to anymore? I already have a list of comfy flat sandals for this Summer on my pinterest board. Check it out for when you’re done with your red bottom stiletto’s. And don’t judge me for odd heel or two you might find on there. I can dream can’t I?
Sadly, shopping for new work clothes is another matter altogether more complicated and challenging than footwear and padded bras. Yesterday I went from Zara to H&M to American Eagle to….sigh Forever 21. Zero finds.
My haul: two set of cute plastic rings from H&M and some nude colored hair bands for my wigs.
BTW, why have so many women’s clothes been ribbed for the past 6 years? Anyone?
WHERE THE HELL DO GROWN ASS WOMEN SHOP FOR CLOTHES?
The fact is, although I continue to be a fan of fashion, I have pretty much aged out of fashion trends myself. I see cute stuff and all l think is, it’s only gonna be good for a season or for two washes or both and it’s not worth the investment. It’s frightening how practical I’ve become in my old age. I make up for that in wig and makeup purchases.
But seriously, I went home and after these failed attempts at “in person” shopping, and did what I always do, buy stuff online from Old Navy. And what’s funny is that although I never could find one thing other than jeans that I liked whenever I would shop in person at Old Navy, everything I’ve ordered from them online has been perfect. I ordered three pairs of loose drop crotch sweatpants from ON last year. Oh my God…and they have pockets!!!!!!??? Lived in them.
I would love to find comfortable stylish clothing I like at a Zara’s or and H&M but it’s just not happening. I’m not in that target market any longer and while having less luck at mainstream clothing retailers does save me some $$$, it leaves me with not many options to wear to the office. I’m often left wondering if there is some secret one stop shopping place that grown ass women in their 40s shop at that I don’t know about.
I’m starting get the feeling that that place is online. Drop the links in comments if I’m missing out on something amazing. LOL!