Sometime last spring, time stopped. We were hamstrung by the disappearance of our routines, and the ones we developed in their place felt a bit as if we were acting in a play called Life. Unfortunately, dressing in any sort of traditionally respectable way was one of the things that fell by the wayside.
There were no longer office clothes or going-out clothes; now, there were just survival clothes. They looked strangely familiar – like the clothes you wore on a Sunday when you wondered whether you could be bothered to leave the house to buy some eggs. They looked like the indistinct items you threw on to take out the bins, when you hoped the darkness of night would hide you from the eyes of your neighbours.
Yes, they were the yoga pants, the name of which you respectfully decided you’d amend because you’d only done the first Yoga With Adriene, and then got bored. Or the pyjamas that gradually lost their definition because you didn’t take them off until the unidentified stain made the postal worker look nervous. After four days. In fact, you are almost certainly reading this column in your pyjamas, no matter what the time of day. But that’s OK. This is a no-judgment zone.
Because loungewear – that’s pyjamas – has been going up in the world. No less than Mark Ronson and Antoni Porowski from Queer Eye have worn them out in public. When red carpets were still a thing, we saw lots of pyjama-outfit hybrids, from Billie Eilish in a grown-up romper suit at the Grammys (actually custom-made Gucci) to actors LaKeith Stanfield and Mahershala Ali wearing “robe suits” (which look like something Sean Connery’s James Bond might have worn when he was, you know, chilling).
This makes it OK for those of us who are slightly lazier, and more thrifty, to think that wearing one outfit the entire time is actually fine. Today, I’m wearing a two-piece with slippers and eye-mask; I feel retro classy, like Hugh Hefner before he was problematic. As an outfit, it is easily smarter than 99% of the clothes I own. The soft cotton fabric makes it feel like a dream but, no matter how smart it looks, I would be hesitant to leave the house dressed like this: it’s too close to one of those anxiety dreams, the ones where you accidentally walk into the road wearing your jim-jams.
• Priya wears orange tiger top, trousers, and eye mask, £190 for the set, from Desmond & Dempsey, from matchesfashion.com. Slippers, £68, from desmondanddempsey.com. Styling: Melanie Wilkinson. Grooming: Sophie Higginson using Tom Ford Beauty and Kiehl’s haircare. Styling assistant: Peter Bevan.