What Clothes to Wear When Working From Home

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Woman wearing a black-and-floral patterned dress working on a laptop in a coffee shop.

If you’re just starting your working from home adventure, you’re probably wondering what you’ll need in the way of clothes – will you need a whole new wardrobe?

I’d say comfort is the main thing to think about, but there are one or two other things to consider when creating your work from home wardrobe.

I don’t think you’ll need to buy a whole new set of outfits (unless you want to!). The information below should help you to decide which of the clothes you already own are suitable for your new way of working.

Smiling woman with long brown hair wearing a short sleeved gray dress and a long necklace and looking at the camera.

How Do The Clothes You Wear Make You Feel?

The first thing to consider is how the clothes you are wearing make you feel. When you look in the mirror, what sort of person is looking back at you?

Do your clothes make you feel that you are in control and ready for work? Or do they make you want to go back to bed, or laze on the sofa all day?

Woman wearing a cream colored top and a chunky metal and white stone necklace.

I think it is helpful to dress differently when you are working at home to when you are having a day off at home, or at the weekend.

This will give you a sub-conscious mental cue to feel more professional on your workdays. Also, it will allow you to feel more relaxed when you’re not working – it’s all too easy to be drawn back into your home office on your days off!

Woman sitting in a wooded area wearing jeans, a green jacket and a colorful scarf.

Who Will You Meet?

The second thing is to think if you will need to meet or talk face-to-face with anyone during the day. What sort of image do you wish to project to your colleagues or business contacts on Skype or FaceTime? Will you be doing any video conferences during the day? 

 

I’d suggest more formal clothes if you’re going to be seen on camera – you don’t want to perpetuate the myth that people who work from home lounge around in pyjamas doing nothing all day!

Two business women meeting in a coffee shop. We're behind one, looking over her shoulder. The other woman is facing the camera, and is wearing a dark blue jacket over a white blouse. There is a laptop, notebook and phone on the table.

Perhaps you need two sorts of clothes – the ones to wear on days when you are working from home on your own,  and others to wear on days where you have video calls or meetings scheduled (or maybe accessories like a scarf or jewellery to “glamorise” your more relaxed outfits).

 

Even if you are working alone at home, there are also times when you will meet people in real life – collecting the kids from school, popping to the corner shop or garage, and so on.  It’s worth making sure that you are wearing clothes that allow you to leave the house when you want to.

Young woman with dark hair wearing a red polo-neck jumper.

My Take On It…

I’ve been working from home for over 20 years now, and I like to think that I dress comfortably but reasonably smart.

The clothes I wear make me feel in the mood for work (without being uncomfortable) and project the correct image if I’m meeting someone or appearing on a video conference. 

Woman working on a laptop. She is wearing a green jacket, a white blouse and a large necklace made of wood and beads.

I choose to dress this way because I don’t want to feel like a person who can’t be bothered to get dressed properly in the morning.

I wouldn’t like to wear fitness clothes all day as I would feel I was about to go to the gym at any minute, and similarly, I wouldn’t like to wear pyjamas all day as I would feel that I was about to go to bed!

I like to wear clothes that make me feel respectable and competent, yet not so formal that I feel stiff and uncomfortable. 

If I was planning to record an online course or video I would probably dress up a little more, as I like to project a more professional image for these sort of things.

Woman wearing mustard skirt and a white top with a large pendant necklace.

In summer a t-shirt top, a long summer skirt and sandals are my standard outfit. To smarten it up, I would put on a light jacket or blazer, and long necklace.

A pale pink roll-neck fluffy jumper.

In winter, I wear warmer clothes as we live in Scotland and often have rain or snow outside. A polo neck sweater, and a heavier weight skirt or coloured jeans are my usual outfit.

Lower legs of a woman wearing jeans and knee-length brown leather boots with buckles. She is standing on a brick surface with railings behind her.

My absolute favourite winter item is my plain leather knee-high boots – perfect with trousers or skirts, and great if it’s raining and I want to just nip out and walk the dog!

If I want to dress up a bit in winter, a silk scarf knotted around my neck or shoulders, or a chunky necklace and earrings can add a bit of “glam”.

A row of brightly colored silk scarves hanging on a rail in a shop.

Of course that is my own style and everyone will have their own favourite outfits to wear. 

Some will want to go more formal and dress up more, and of course others will not feel relaxed in those clothes and want to dress down more.

If you live in a warmer climate, you won’t need to have warm and cold season outfits.

That’s an entirely personal choice, but I hope the things I’m talking about here will make it easier for you to choose what to wear when you’re working from home.

As always, if you have any thoughts or comments about this, please let me know below. What is your favourite work from home outfit?

 

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What Clothes to Wear When Working From Home

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8 thoughts on “What Clothes to Wear When Working From Home

  1. Thank you for this article! I do struggle with what to wear and often am wearing pyjamas. In fact, I have often joked about doing a course called ‘100K in Your PJs’. 🤣 And I do sometimes want to be wearing more ‘professional’ clothes while still being comfortable. This is great food for thought. 🙏

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