No. 11: Because dress sweats are a thing

No. 11: Because dress sweats are a thing

And Toronto brands have stepped up to meet the demand

The pandemic turned remote work from an occasional weekday treat to permanent reality for many desk-bound professionals. And in a Zoom-dominated era where one only needs to look presentable from mid-torso up, the need for traditional work attire has all but vanished. Stylish comfort is now king, and Toronto brands are meeting the demand.

Soft Focus has been making silky-smooth pyjamas, robes and slip dresses from plant-based fabrics since 2017. But since the pandemic hit, founder Sammi Smith started selling monochromatic sweatpant sets—including a belted lilac jumpsuit and a perfectly oversized rust-hued sweater with cropped joggers—that can easily pass for Zoom-kosher.

Similarly, minimalist flip-flop company Tkees launched their first clothing collection, Core, in the middle of June. The mix-and-match lineup of cotton basics like sweatpants, tees and hoodies are comfy enough for couch-bound days but have structured, boxy silhouettes that make a laid-back fashion statement when you have to venture outside for groceries.

Photograph by Aurora Shields

Costume designer Sarah Gregg Millman took a more indulgent approach to housebound fashion, coming out with a collection of flowy oversized dresses called Local Woman in mid-July. She hosted a successful pop-up, then made a website, which sold out of 90 pieces in a day. “I think people were going bananas stuck in their houses and wanted to feel a bit sexy and alive in the world,” she says.

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