I have worn the same pair of joggers for the past 13 months, roughly 5 days out of the week. I figure the other 2 days of the week have averaged “jammies” with a loose pant thrown into the mix very once in a while. I have enjoyed the loose pant year quite a bit! The down side to this has been not really noticing the Covid pounds slowly jumping into the joggers with me. I have mostly only myself to blame, but there have been actual bumps in the road that have put a hitch in my giddy up. I hit a sidewalk crack while running in October, and (after checking to see if anyone saw) realized I cut my hand open and tore a calf muscle. 6 weeks later, the day after I got out of the calf boot, I tore my shoulder labrum in an excited effort to lift weights again. I am out of the shoulder sling and in a fashion pickle now that it is time to leave the house and meet the world again.
With everything that has happened in the world over the last year, this is a no big deal. I realize this, but it is exciting to have the opportunity to open my closet door again. It is not exciting, however, for everything to be really tight. I refuse to buy bigger sizes and want to look well put together, but how? I have grown quite fond of the feel of stretchy pants and a tight jean waist seems unreasonable. I am choosing to skip the 2021 trends and stick with streamlined classics. My leaving-the-house wardrobe consists of a fitted denim jacket, trench coat, dark jeans with a lot of stretch, stretchy pants in a dressier silhouette, easy dresses and shoes with a pop. I top it off with liquid confidence in the form of a perfume that makes me feel a little saucy.
Denim jacket: I can wear a denim jacket year around with Southern California weather. This is a category where you can spend a little more money because they never go out of style. I think of them as an instant upgrade, and have for the last dozen or so years. Jackets are always a wonderful investment piece. I know that the trend is oversized, but that just doesn’t appeal to me for the purpose of looking pulled together. Go fitted and a little cropped if you’re petite. It makes them easier to wear over a dress.
Madewell Denim jacket in pinter wash, $118
Trench coat: This name makes me laugh. What the name conjures in my imagination is probably what yours does too, but the style is so good. Again, an oversized one is very on trend right now, but a classic fit trench coat will slim your figure to your advantage. I go back and forth on belted vs. unbelted, but that’s up to you. I love London Fog. It has just the right weight for California weather. A classic style will last you forever. Get a basic, then add fun prints or bold colors. I may or may not be a coat collector….
London Fog, double breasted trench
London Fog in watermelon, $94.50 at Macy’s. Many colors are offered, but this is by far my fav.
Jeans with stretch: Go for a slight boot cut paired under the trench to maximize the silhouette. Boot cut or straight is a more flattering silhouette than a skinny jean if you’re trying to fudge weight loss. Go with whatever makes you feel best, but here are a few options if you want inspiration. Side note, you know the thing you swore you’d never do, but then embrace? For me, that is NYDJ. I always thought they were matronly, but the high, super stretchy fabric really does look good in their black jean. ALWAYS be picky about the wash. Obvious whiskering is icky, dirty washes are worse. Good American is a brand that has great stretch. If you just can’t embrace stretchy jeans, here is where you can go oversized. The higher the rise, the better. Featured below, AG Alexxis, NYDJ Marilyn and Good American.
Stretchy pants: My favorite, absolute favorite place for stretchy, polished pants is Athleta. The cosmic crop or pant (which is way cuter than the picture on their site) is on clearance. They are so easily dressed up or down and I wear navy in winter with a sable, suede tall boot. The Brooklyn pant comes in a few different styles and is a pant I wear over and over throughout the week. All In Motion from Target offers fantastic Athleta knock offs.
All In Motion from http://www.target.com. It’s a dupe of an Athleta pant for 1/3 of the cost.
Easy dresses: I have found that Amazon has fantastic options if you’re brave enough to try without trying on first. I follow the reviews religiously and sort them based on height and weight. I like a looser dress and add my denim jacket over to give it a more defined shape.
Shoes with a pop: I am a total sucker for shoes. They can make a boring outfit fun. These clogs from Charlotte Stone have made me want to leave the house for any reason I can conjure, just so I can wear them. If you sign up for their emails, you receive an offer for $40 off. They are surprisingly comfortable and run just a tad big….maybe to make up for a lack of half sizes.
Liquid confidence: Perfume makes you feel better. It can’t take away the weight gain, but it can let you embrace those womanly curves. My grandmother had a silver tray covered with beautiful perfume bottles. I always looked forward to visiting her and sitting at her vanity and smelling them one by one. Scent is instant glamour to me. I have found 2 that I love over the last year. My husband says one of them smells like church. I say that makes me holy….
Le Labo, AnOther 13. I really like the size options to manage price points. If floral is more your style, Le Labo Fleur d’Oranger 27 is stunning.
If you are still homebound or without many options for sniffing, www.luckyscent.com is a site where you can get lost in fragrance heaven. You are able to purchase samples to try before committing to a full bottle.
I had fun while gaining weight over the last year. I don’t regret eating cookie dough and watching Harry Potter with my little boys. I don’t regret running, even with a fall. Being outside was an indulgence. I don’t regret drinking wine and laughing way too late at night with my husband. This last year emphasized the need to cherish the little moments. Now, it’s time to shed the fear, hopefully the pounds and embrace leaving the house to resume life in a world that is still a little bit different.