I have always preferred comfortable clothes. Most of my life until I started working was spent in strechy sweatpants/jeans/shorts, hoodies and sneakers with the exception when I got older of dressing up to go out to parties/bars/night clubs. When I started working I started wearing “proper” office clothes – suit pants, tight dresses, suit jackets, shirts, pullovers, blouses and shoes with a heel. I felt like this was expected and that I wouldn’t be taken seriously if I didn’t conform. I also thought I looked nice and professional. As soon as I got home though I always stripped everything off and wore more comfortable clothes.
A couple of years ago I listened to a podcast with Daniel Vitalis that had an interesting take on clothes that really resonated with me. Most clothes that we are “supposed” to wear are extremely constricting. We are literally hindered from moving our bodies naturally by fashion and our clothes. High heels contorting our feet and posture, normal shoes has a toe box that is way to narrow, bras with metal frames that dig into our bodies, belts that constrict our stomachs, tight jackets in which we can’t lift our arms and trousers that we can’t bend down in. I had already felt this about high heels at parties. I never wore them because I love dancing and noticed that I didn’t want to dance when I was wearing high heels. So ballerina shoes became my companions when going out.
After listening to Daniel Vitalis describing this phenomenon for most clothes that we wear I made a decision to stop wearing bras with metal. It seems silly but to always be comfortable and never have the feeling of wanting to free yourself from the contraption pressing on your ribs when I get home from work is amazing. It is a weird world that promotes clothes with these restrictions and the only reason for this is that we are currently living in a society where we only need to move or walk very little in our everyday lives.
Where I work now I don’t need to wear anything special and can have “normal” clothes. Over time I have begun evaluate all of my clothes to see if I can move freely in them. A good test is can I squat/hang/run in these clothes. This has lead me to a wardrobe with a very neutral set of clothes like stretchy jeans, cardigans and loose dresses that do’t get in the way of any movement I might want to do.