Pat Blythe – Coronavirus fashion trends….

I have been writing my brains out over the past week. A number of great assignments through Fiverr and I’ve now managed to scoop a rather lucrative project that will probably see me through the rest of the month. These stay-at-home projects are just what the doctor ordered. Helps to keep my mind off other things…..or not……

With all the insane craziness going on all around the world we are pretty much stuck inside our homes. Reading all the messages on FB and IG, apparently most of us are making wardrobe choices that reflect that cooped-up feeling. Who needs to make a fashion statement at the office these days? Our daily maintenance routines aren’t so daily anymore. With all the beauty and nail salons closed I’m thinking the heavy use of hats and scarves is next. Either that or there’s going to be a lot of Miss Clairol flying off the shelves. Hands and feet? I’ll leave that up to you.

It’s all the rage…..

So, it appears pajamas, boxers, years-old t-shirts, over-sized shirts and even the latest in birthday suits have now become de rigueur. Days are running together, fabulous (and some not so fabulous) music is jamming social media, eating and Netflix have become ingrained into our lives (I sense a lot of diet and exercise books on the horizon), our fridges and freezers are jammed with enough frozen goods to restock the supermarkets and TP has become a hot commodity. But it’s the fashion that I find amusing……

Not sure about the pjs but……

Leading the runway are pajama fashions. It’s the relaxed look. Who really wants to figure out what to wear, and who cares, when the most frequent place you’re visiting is the fridge? Just roll out of bed and spend the day in exactly what you rolled into bed wearing. It’s fast, easy, no muss, no fuss, comfort at its best and it’s “on trend”. Incorporating or “repurposing” has become extremely fashionable and those cute kitties or puppies are just too adorable to discard for regular day wear.


Next up in fashion trends is “the boxer” short. Letting it all hang loose, this comfy day wear can be worn with or without that favourite t-shirt. Easy on and off, with room to breathe and move and easy access for that occasional scratch, “the boys” and you are dressed for the day. Some rather daring fashionistas will wear the trendy boxer over leggings or even jeans, but the look is best left without additional accoutrement. Freedom of movement, comfort and scratchability are the name of the game. Offering a vast array of fabrics, designs and messages to choose from to match your mood, from “hey there” (I’m thinkin’ silk) to “just pass me that beer” (that would be cotton), there’s something for everyone.

Next up is the indispensable track pant, sometimes called sweat pants or “jogging pants” (although I can’t imagine all that bouncing up and down is good for the boys). Every man’s favourite comfort wear for many for years, just whip these babies on and match up with your daily hoodie or T. Underwear optional. Casual, you can actually get away with wearing these for a quick trip to the beer store, local coffee shop or even the gym.  With those stretchable elastic waists, those trips to the fridge will go unnoticed.

Then there’s this…..a sweat pant never looked so good

Not to forget your favourite T-shirt. It’s somewhere… the back of the drawer or the bottom of the laundry hamper, but you are NEVER throwing it out. Frayed, torn….a little rough around the edges….and much loved. Like comfort food, it’s your go-to and it doesn’t matter what the reason is. Yes, even the ladies have their favourite, it’s not a “men’s only club”. Thing is, these days ripped and worn anything is “in”. So…..shine some light on your favourite.

….and the ladies, we like our men’s shirts. Long, oversized, worn, comfy-cozy, we’ll pad around the house in them for hours, with or without pants. One of my favourite pieces of clothing, I’m still wearing some of Chris’s old shirts, rips, holes, fraying and all. Lately, it’s either the white or the plaid and the first thing I grab to throw on in the morning. It’s like a nightshirt only for daywear. There are one or two that are strictly for in-house activities while others I’ll wear out just about anywhere. Why do we (meaning women) like men’s shirts so much? They’re usually large and loose so non-constricting which means we don’t require a bra so the girls can hang loose (just like the boys in their boxers). Typically a man’s shirt is long enough, usually about mid-thigh, to cover the derriere, etc. so we don’t feel too overexposed. It doesn’t require a belt to stay on like a housecoat, just a few buttons and we’re good. Men’s shirts can be sexy or functional….for work or play or just plain comfort.

Sexy white…..a fan favourite

The men in plaid

….and the ladies in plaid

Finally there is….well….nothing. The all-together, the birthday suit, unclothed, undressed, starkers, in the buff….you get the picture. If you live alone sometimes nothing is best and clothing is optional. It provides a sense of freedom and there are definitely no attire decisions to make in the morning. No sleeves to roll up or dangle in the way, nothing to interfere with the work you’re doing, easy to wipe clean (and no staining) if you drop or spill something, there’s nothing that’s going to rip or tear, a cost effective way to keep your clothes clean….or you just plain love the freedom. A modicum of clothing is required when cooking, using tools, etc. simply for protection. Your skin is the body’s largest organ and it likes a little fresh air every now and then. So go on……get naked and strut with pride! Just make sure the neighbours don’t have their binoculars out!

Jake from Allstate has been gracing us with his many appearances on FB

Who knows how much longer this self-isolation and quarantining is going to last. I don’t think anyone has a crystal ball that can predict the future. The world has been blindsided by something so unexpected it’s still partly in shock. Patience, keeping in touch, listening to all the music that’s available on the internet, eating healthy (see sweat pants), getting some exercise and wearing (or not wearing) whatever you feel comfortable in to get you through the day is about the best we can do. Sit tight, this too shall pass.

Oh, and one more thing, ALL YOU MUSICIANS AND CREATIVE TYPES…..since we all seem to have an abundance of time on our hands, put your artistry to work and do a little something for one of our own. Listen, get inspired, be inventive and leave a lasting and beautiful tribute to a man who’s passion for music was boundless and who died much, much, much, too young. The story has been picked up by a national network so get going and do your bit. Deadline is Friday.

I haven’t added any tunes this week. Go listen to Elmwood Underground and all the beautiful music on the internet. You can start here

There is a cornucopia of music, both live and recorded, being offered by artists all over the world. Music is indeed food for the soul and the soul is in the music. Go forth and LISTEN!!!



Pat’s column appears every Wednesday.

Contact us at:

dbawis-button7“Music and photography….my heart, my passions.” After an extended absence —  33 years as a consultant and design specialist in the telecommunications industry — Pat has turned her focus back to the music scene. Immersing herself in the local club circuit, attending the many diverse music festivals, listening to some great music, photographing and writing once again, she is eager to spread the word about this great Music City of ours…..Toronto. Together for 34 years, Pat little-red-headed-dancing-girlalso worked alongside her late husband Christopher Blythe, The PictureTaker©, who, beginning in the early 70s, photographed much of the local talent (think Goddo, Frank Soda and the Imps, BB Gabor, the first Police Picnic, Buzzsaw, Hellfield, Shooter, The Segarini Band….) as well as national and international acts. Pat is currently making her way through 40 years of Chris’s archives, 20 of which are a photographic history of the local GTA music scene beginning in 1974. It continues to be a work in progress. Oh…..and she LOVES to dance! 

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