The best of quarantine: fashion edition

by Lea Ozdere

Many people picked up new hobbies and habits to pass the time safely at home and cope with the restraints of the pandemic. These hobbies varied from puzzles and workouts to cooking and clothes-making. With the closing down of several malls and retail stores as well as the prolonged curfews and lockdowns, outdoor retail shopping is no longer a priority or an easy-access activity. Not to mention, what’s the point of spending money on new clothes only to be cooped up inside and not have anywhere to wear them out to? If anything, quarantine should make us money-savers, not money-spenders.

Several people have taken this extended period of at-home time as an opportunity to design new styles of clothing with the resources available to them. This has become a great way for many to spice up their wardrobe in an easy, accessible way. Some new styles became more widespread and popular enough that people — many of them quite young — were able to start small businesses and sell their products through virtual platforms. These simple, fun and time-passing activities eventually paved the way for new trends that we can label “quarantine fashion.” Not only has quarantine led to a new fashion wave that reflects the lazy and comfortable reality of lockdown, but it also has helped some start businesses and earn money despite the draining nature of the pandemic on the economy.

Here are some trends that have started or been revived during quarantine.

Tie-dye

You may have seen tie-dye pieces in your closet and on others as a child. These pieces of clothing are reminiscent of the hippie culture in America from the ’60s and were a common fashion statement about 10 to 15 years ago. Now in quarantine, tie-dye has made a comeback, and it’s better than ever. Many use tie-dying techniques to give a twist to their clothing items, such as matching sets from head to toe, socks and even bucket hats! What better and easier way to take a solid-colored piece of fabric and spice it up than to splash some beautiful varieties of colored dye around until it forms an abstract piece of art?

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Cozy dressing: sweatsets and loungewear

In a time where you can’t really do much else than sit and hang around at home, your go-to clothing items should be comfort pieces. So why not make comfortable cute? That’s exactly what some people have done. Matching sweat sets have become a staple piece for many people as they lounge around the house or take small trips to the grocery store. Tracksuits, oversized sweatshirts and sweatpants, and hoodie dresses are the new “going out” looks. This is a quarantine fashion trend that will hopefully stick around long after the pandemic. Nothing beats being cozy and cute at the same time.

Activewear

With gyms and other recreation centers closing down due to the pandemic, many people picked up at-home workout routines. Following YouTube routines, streaming online classes and finally using the dust-covered treadmill or Peloton have kept people motivated during an otherwise lazy time. Looking cute while doing so has also become part of the motivation. Workout clothes and matching activewear sets became extremely popular as people started to put down their phones and pick up the weights to make sure quarantine did not get the best of them.

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Reworked clothes: patchwork, reverse stitching, embroidery

Another way to liven up your wardrobe and make yourself stand out is to make your own clothes. How can you take a ten-year-old shirt sitting in your closet and make it brand new again? Cut it up, add some patterns and combine it with another shirt. Reworked fashion has grown in popularity over the course of the last several months because not only is it a hobby that helps pass the time, but it is also such an easy way to revamp wardrobes without spending money on new clothes.

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Overall, the fashion trends that have arisen from time spent in quarantine provide a perfect balance of comfort and creativity. The styles we’ve seen can be encompassed under the umbrella of a statement that has now become very sought after: lazy fashion. Oversized shirts, sweatsuits, big flannels, sweater dresses, baggy clothes — the list goes on and on. Despite all of the hardships of experiencing one of the most unexpected and life-altering events, we have still found ways to advance and unite, even though things like fashion that seem small in the grand scheme of things.

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