Lockdown Clothing: Astrid’s story

Phase two of the Lockdown Clothing project is well under way now, with two new stories and follow-up chats with eight of our participants from earlier in the year. Today’s story is a new one from Astrid Lopez. Astrid is a Spanish London dweller who loves 40s-50s-60s music, dancing, DJing, cava and cake. You can find her on Twitter as @MissCastanette.

1) What types of clothing do you wear most often now?

Mostly dresses and tights, or long tops with jeggings, and thick socks. Comfortable but smart-ish clothes, as I work from home and am often ambushed by surprise camera-on Teams meetings!

2) What is your daily routine for getting dressed to remain at home? If you don’t have one, why is that?

I’ve got into going for a walk early in the morning before I start work, so I firstly get my walking clothes on (leggings and a t-shirt, hoodie and waterproof jacket, trainers), and then have a shower and get changed into my work clothes when I get home.

3) Has your approach to clothes changed as a result of the current situation?

Definitely; these days I look for a balance between smart and comfortable. I’ve developed a slight aversion towards waistbands. I wore a pair of skinny high-waisted jeans last week for the first time in ages, and was surprised at how uncomfortable I find them, and it’s not because they don’t fit or anything, but I guess when you’re sitting down most of the time you notice it more.

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?

Ohh this is a tough one, I like rotating a variety of them! There are a couple of very comfy but stylish M&S dresses I have worn lots, and a smock dress I made which is lovely and super comfy/cool for the summer. But really, I think what really came into its own during lockdown has been my collection of Snag tights and chub rub shorts – as I wear mostly dresses, these have been essential for a pop of colour but also comfort. I don’t get a commission for this, by the way!

5) Has your self-perception changed in isolation? How so?

It really has; at the start of lockdown, I had just started therapy to help with body image and disordered eating issues. Being at home most of the time, without the distractions of usual life (going out, going to work etc) has given me the opportunity to really think and reflect, and I’ve got even more into yoga, meditation, and self-care. All the anxiety (and the jokes/memes) around “Corona-kilos” have made me quite frankly furious – like, really, is putting on weight the worst that could happen to you in the circumstances? And that led me to reflect on my own perception of myself, my weight and my body, and to consciously veer towards more body-positive social media content. In a way, not being out and about so much, I’m not so exposed to content I would otherwise choose not to see – like weight-loss or fitness adverts – and I feel like I’m more able to make the decision to see or not see something. This has helped me see myself in a different light, without being constantly compared to an ideal of beauty I’ll never reach – and being cool(ish) with that, too.

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