It was about a month into stay-at-home orders when I began to look at my wardrobe from a different perspective. I found myself spending more time sorting through dresser drawers than hangers in my closet. The sneaker collection — three pairs of New Balances, some running shoes, and every neutral color that Converse offers for Chuck Taylors — that usually resides under my bed was, too, getting more use than ever before. As a result, I discovered something about myself: I never again want to wear anything besides home shorts — an athletic-pajama short hybrid — that I’ve been living in during quarantine.
Since my lightbulb moment back in April, I’ve noticed that: (1) home shorts are everywhere right now, and (2) the range of options for a good pair of elastic or drawstring short-shorts à la Patagonia Baggies is far more diverse than I remember it being BQ (before quarantine). It’s not all Outdoor Voices and Lululemon. Alexander Wang makes them, too. (Bonus: his look like men’s boxers, another popular trend to come out of quarantine.) So does iets frans…, aka Urban Outfitters’ cool kid line of affordable tie-dye loungewear.
The real discovery here, though, wasn’t just that home shorts make for a great lounging companion. Instead, it was the realization that, with the right styling, they can also be pretty stylish. I, for instance, like to pair mine with crew socks, loafers, and an oversized button-down shirt. I’ve seen others dress them up with a prairie top and kitten heels (a look likely inspired by none other than Carrie Bradshaw circa Season 3), or down with a tie-dye sweatshirt and sneakers. House shorts even pair well with blazers — but at that end, what doesn’t these days?
To make my case, I scoured Instagram to find some fashion-forward ways to wear house shorts this summer. See what resulted from my search and shop the quarantine trend by clicking through the slideshow ahead.
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