It’s 7:15am. No, wait! It’s 8. You need to get ready for your weekly team call. You should probably run a comb through your hair and change your shirt. Will this stain be noticeable on Zoom? Why is it so hard to find a Zoom-appropriate shirt? Oh, wait! Your call isn’t today, it’s tomorrow. What day is it again?

Your daily internal dialogue may be a little different than what you’ve been used to in the past. Staying at home has suddenly introduced a whole new category of things to add to your to-do list and personal errands to incorporate between work tasks. The days are starting to blur together, but the recurring predicament you’ve been facing each morning is what to wear? What’s appropriate? Maybe you’re opting for the minimal level of professionalism acceptable while trying to get away with the most comfort possible just in case you get a surprise conference call. Maybe you’ve opted for business up-top and ready-to-run (literally) from the waist down. Or maybe you’re in the “sweatsuit all day” category ready to change at a moment’s notice (or not). 

Athleisure is not a new concept. The formality of workwear has been significantly changing in many environments over the past few years toward a less formal dress code. Even Goldman Sachs announced last year that employees can dress down for the office. The ongoing dilemma of what to wear to work has shifted yet again, since work and home have merged into one concept. No matter the industry you may work in, it’s pretty clear that fashion is definitely one of the many things which will not be the same post-pandemic. So, what is the next generation of workwear? Well, we’d like to call it “The New Sweatsuit.”

The New Sweatsuit: bridging the divide between at-home comfort with a ready-to-video-call appearance from its use of technical properties

What does technical mean?

We define it as a way to serve a purpose beyond the garment’s style and polished look. Technical elements provide performance qualities suited for anyone with an active lifestyle, while never compromising on a professional exterior. 

Working from home may likely be just one part of your day. Does this mean that formal workwear is dead? Not quite. You deserve a blazer that makes you look sharp and allows you to take care of your kids without a second thought. A shirt that looks crisp while cooking or running a meeting is no longer just a dream. Pants that you can sit in all day as well as move around your home doing chores are a reality. You can combat the versatility of your day without having to change your outfit once. The New Sweatsuit is the evolution of athleisure; it’s your new daily uniform that’ll make you think twice before ever putting on another restrictive, non-breathable, and rigid piece of clothing. 

So what items are included on the checklist when putting together your New Sweatsuit? 

Our lifestyles are no longer compartmentalized, so first and foremost you need to find apparel that serves as a hybrid to mimic your way of living. In order to be flexible and adaptable to tackle whatever your day may present, your clothes should not be a barrier to completing your tasks. Therefore, the hybrid qualities of your apparel need to maintain a healthy balance of pure comfort and formality to achieve a polished loungewear look. Next, practicality needs to be evaluated. The next generation of sweatsuits for work need to have a variety of practical elements that aid you throughout the day, not come with a new set of obstacles. Finally, the wearability of the items need to be evaluated. Under the current economic conditions, investment in fashion has become less about style as well as less of a priority. Therefore, the value and return on your investment may be more important now than previously. To maximize wearability in a product, make sure you select colours that are easy to wear and mix and match for multiple occasions, silhouettes that are classic, fabrics that last, and styles that are timeless.

Although you can curate your New Sweatsuit as you see fit, we’ve included our official Ædelhard version below. Whether this is the look that works for you, or you just need a bit of inspiration, take a look here to start your journey toward creating your next-gen workwear!

Black EOD Performance Trouser: looks like a trouser, fits like sweatpants. As the name suggests, with these pants you can ensure that you’ll get everything done that you need to by EOD! Combining a clean long silhouette with a movement-focused fit, this proprietary double-knit fabric ensures that you have a desirable level of stretch, breathability, and easy-to-care-for garment that you’ll wear over and over again.

Sky Blue Flex Fit Technical Shirt: by adding a pop of colour while still maintaining its versatility, this shirt can be combined with anything. Wear tucked or untucked with your pants – the stretch element will make it comfortable either way! The structured collar band, darting on the shirt back, and roomier hemline all help achieve the modern minimalist look, which works for every occasion.

Black 24hr Performance Blazer: instantly elevate your look for your conference calls with the comfiest blazer you’ve ever worn. The mesh interior gives you all the ventilation you need to be able to move and breathe, while the unlined shoulders make you look cool without feeling constrained. It’s a sweater that looks like a blazer with such a high level of comfort you’ll forget to take it off!

What has been clear for many individuals is that even with the initial desire to dress up after being cooped up in your home for so long, ultimately it won’t be easy to transition back to wearing structured clothes after being so comfy this whole time. However, regardless of what the next-generation of workwear may look like, just know that despite feeling a lack of control during these trying times, you always have the choice over how comfortable and stylish you want to be. 

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