x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Katie Trotter: on the slippery slope of slouch wear

I'm not sick, I'm just exploring my slacker, stay-at-home, satisfied self, and there is a way to do it in style.

The past few days I have done something that I've always wanted to do: work from home - a rather appealing concept. Imagine, one could wear a grotty old T-shirt from university days for one's, ahem, "day at the office", and no one would bat an eyelid.

Dressing up only for yourself, and maybe the corner shop man if you run out of milk (you will), seems a little pointless. Same goes for new mums. Surely if you are cleaning up baby dribble six days out of seven (if you're lucky) there's not much call for an Alexander McQueen robot dress.

But always one for a change, I was willing to give it a shot. After my two friends from Sweden had been shuttled off to the beach (they had just escaped from the cocoon they call winter), I plunked myself down in a pair of tracksuit bottoms and a big old hooded top and settled in for the day. On their return they were less than impressed. "What the heck are you wearing? You look awful," one said. "Are you sick?" asked the other. I explained that I was simply exploring what they call the "dress-down revolution". Take Madonna and Gwyneth - those gluten-free bendy types who hover around organic areas of LA. If they can do it why can't we?

What, I told my unforgiving friends, is generally the hallmark of a super-trend is its accessibility, and of course a catchy name. Urban streetwear, slacker style, slouch wear - that sort of thing.

But before you jump into your wardrobe and rejoice, listen up, because it is not what you think. For starters, it has to be the right kind of tracksuit bottom, not the ones you put on when you know there is no risk of a visitor and have just bought the new HBO box set and a family bag of Doritos. It also matters what brand of casual wear you go for. Look to Vanessa Bruno, Alexander Wang, Marni and Missoni, who all do it beautifully.

The most important thing is the fabric - look for fine, good-quality jersey in teal, off-white and soft corals. Think about layering. Start with a tight-fitting vest before adding a slightly oversized, wide-necked T-shirt. Stick to a tight ankle with your trouser in a fine fabric so it hangs well on the hip - boot cut won't do. And forget white trainers (overzealous soccer mum) or any kind of jewellery (Nineties girl band).

Am I sold? Absolutely not. I am telling you this story not to berate you but to warn you: breaking free from zips, buttons and waistbands and roaming around in a constant state of comfortable bliss is highly addictive. Tracksuit bottoms are dangerous, dangerous things. Give in and you are on a slippery slope.



The week's highs and lows.

Kate Moss again Just when we thought this supermodel was done she signs on to be the new face of Dior Addict Lipsticks.

Not a good sport Derek Lam's attempt at reviving sporty daywear concerns us.

The new cool We love Tilda Swinton's striking campaigns for the jewellery brand Pomellato.

Stop the presses The already-late memoirs of the Vogue creative director Grace Coddington face another holdup due to a delay by her co-writer.

Optical Illusion We love this faux wedge from Osman's S/S 2011 collection.