How are people dressing when in lockdown and isolation situations? How is this different to the way they dressed before? Has it affected their sense of self? This project aims to shine a light on those changes and reveal some of the many and varied personal stories relating to fashion and dress in 2020. Today’s interview is with Kat. She works in an admin role for the NHS and has been an outward goth since the 1990s. Kat has been drawn to the dark and macabre most of her life, and has been doing historical costuming since 1994. You can find her on Instagram and YouTube.
1) Can you describe what your personal style was like before lockdown?
A mix of traditional and punk like Goth, with a corporate twist when needed. Velvet, lace, and corsets or vinyl and mesh.
2) What is your daily routine for getting dressed to remain at home? If you don’t have one, why is that?
I do get up and get dressed every day, even the days I have been ill with probable coronavirus, including shoes. No makeup but usually a corset as I do not wear modern bras any more. I toilet, wash my face, then moisturise and dress. Currently I have a rotation of a few skirts and various band shirts. I’m making a point of wearing different shoes.
3) Has your approach to fashion and style changed as a result of the current situation?
I have been getting back to making some clothes and bringing out different shoes I don’t usually wear. I have found that the small space of my house means I can’t wear the larger skirts I like to usually wear. So it’s leaner velvet skirts and only one corset as it’s the most comfortable for sitting at the makeshift office desk in the lounge.
4) Thinking back through what you have worn since you’ve been staying at home, what has been your favourite item of clothing and why?
I redyed a Regency gown I sewed many years ago, based on a pattern from Janet Arnold’s Patterns of Fashion. Once dyed a darker hue I have worn it, made a short YouTube video for my channel on it and want to wear it more often. I did the full #historybounding day with correct silk stockings and modern shoes with a regency feel and felt lovely.
5) What’s your shoe situation at home? And how does this affect your sense of self?
I have to drive 40 miles to work and then walk 15 min so my shoes for this were usually basic. Since working from home, I’m pulling out my whole shoe collection and wearing different ones each day. That means my knee high wedge boots, irregular choice pumps or Fluevog shoes are out of the boxes and onto my feet. I love my footwear and it’s been so wonderful to be able to wear them and feel myself even when still at home. It’s an outing for my feet!
If you’d like to take part in the project yourself, you can find all the information you need in the blog post entitled ‘Lockdown Fashion: an exploration of dressing at home in 2020‘ dated 9th April 2020.