Has the experience of lockdown altered our perspective of dressing for the future?

Posted on 17 March 2021
By Shannon Garner
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The global coronavirus pandemic has dramatically shifted the way in which we go about our day-to-day lives.

With the roadmap out of lockdown announced, the plans to slowly ease restrictions over the next few months and be back to normal by 21st June may have altered the perspective of dressing for the future.

The pandemic will have a lasting effect on our relationship with fashion as the government-imposed lockdowns have not only altered our wardrobes and seen a rise in loungewear, but they have also caused changes in the fashion industry.

COVID-19 has pushed the industry to engage and experiment with immersive technologies in order to still provide for their clients and consumers.

Fashion Weeks across the globe went digital, providing virtual experiences of designers new collections and showcased how the industry began embracing ‘phygital’ shows.

Carolyn Rubido, a celebrity stylist, commented on the creativeness of digital shows. She said: “Many designers have gotten extremely creative with the way their shows are filmed for virtual runways. Just look at the Versace Fall/Winter 2021 collection as one example.

“I do know that runway shows will return to normal one day, but these times have opened up a whole new world for the fashion industry and it is a beautiful one.”

Since there has been nowhere to go, the trend cycle has been completely disrupted and people have found comfort in constantly wearing loungewear – with joggers, pyjamas, gym wear and dressing gowns forming the four pillars of the 2020 wardrobe.

Historical events like this are known for influencing fashion trends and the fashion industry have made sure to use it to their advantage.

The ‘Sheets to Streets’ aesthetic saw people increasingly sporting loungewear out of the house and shows that fashion brands were thriving and capitalising on lockdowns impacts as loungewear was no longer being designed with the intent of not being seen in.

More and more brands began producing loungewear attire as people were no longer looking for formal wear for work but instead, were looking for comfortable items for their new working-from-home environments.

Loungewear sales skyrocketed back in 2020 when London Fashion Week went digital and Hanifa sent 3D models down the runway.

Shannon Lau, a student fashion designer said: “I think loungewear is now seen as a trend because of lockdown.

“More and more fashion brands are producing athleisure clothing and because of the recent situations we have been in, people will continue to wear this type of clothing.”

Saskia Clark, a social media assistant for Missguided, also commented on the popularity of loungewear and that there is a drop in demand for it already. She said: “Lockdown has caused loungewear to be our bestseller.

“It’s a category that we promote on social media daily, which pre-Covid we may have only published a few times a month.”

“Though COVID is still in its prime and we aren’t due to be out of lockdown till mid year, we are beginning to see a drop in the demand for loungewear.

“Many are excited for a new start and may be preparing for a post lockdown wardrobe, which we can see in our current product offering and search terms.”

With the hopes of things returning back to normal soon, the opportunity to finally dress up will hopefully make people excited and inspire them more than ever before.

Shannon commented on the ways people may dress post-lockdown. She said: “I think that people will want to dress up more after lockdown as they will want to feel special and done up because we’ve not been able to do that for a while.”

Carolyn added: “I can only hope it would be something similar to the roaring 20s but keeping in mind that the pandemic has changed us all in different ways, some people will lean towards a more extreme wardrobe whilst others will choose to sport a more relaxed wardrobe.

“I just hope that everyone is able to find the best way to express themselves through fashion whilst adjusting to an entirely different society.”