You've thrown on your favorite hoodie and have what appears to be a robbed convenience store laid out on your coffee table. Oh, this scene feels all too familiar. We know what time it is: binging on Netflix time! I suppose we can expect to see you either in a couple of hours or a couple of days, depending on what sort of undertaking you've decided to shoulder. Perhaps you're ready to re-watch all 154 episodes of Gilmore Girls or maybe venture into a new adaptation of Star Trek. But if it's just a few of those obscure movies you've passed up watching time and time again via Redbox, then cool: I guess you'll still make our dinner plans. If it's that new BBC period drama that got cancelled halfway through its fourth season, however, it was nice knowing you, friend.
Once you do manage to pull yourself away from the glow of the screen, you might not remember how to style a look that doesn't revolve around fleece. Well, marathon watchers rejoice! With just a few simple moves (and brushes of the hair) you can roll off your bed and leave the house in your sweats. Here are 11 ways how:
1. Go Half-Tucked
Did you just spend the last two hours trying to find something semi-decent to watch, and now it's time to go? It's like you enter a vortex while scrolling: All time seems to suspend as you sift through awkward 90s movies that you specifically remember passing over in Blockbuster. And as per usual, in the end you've decided on nothing. As consolation, don't slip out of your black sweatpants and, instead, dress them up. Pair them with a turtleneck in a poppy hue, like lavender or mint. Then take a plaid shirt, leave the front unbuttoned and tuck in one side into the waistband to accent your waist. That way the hem isn't just flopping around a la teenage angst.
2. Hide It Under Layers
You know how sometimes you enter denial mode and force yourself to believe something? Well that's what we're going to do with our sweats. We're just going to walk out of the house, thinking they're a nice pair of pants. And everyone is going to go along with it. To achieve this ruse, hide your casual-wear underneath a crafty shell of layers. Pair it with a statement peacoat to drag the eye upward, and top it off with a classy, clean-lined sweater. Bonus points if you take J. Crew's tip and layer a silk scarf underneath your sweater as an interesting detail. With so much going on on top, no one's going to notice what you have going on at the bottom.
3. Pair It With Statement Shoes
So you have your tailored coat on, but you still feel like it's a tad obvious you have the same pants on that you wear to fall asleep. To spruce it up a bit, pair the look with some statement oxfords, adding a dose of strong fashion to the look. Choose a pair of leopard or glitter ones, letting the bold choice contrast against the simple pants in a playful way.
4. Chambray Fixes Everything
Want to know the secret weapon that goes with any (and I mean any) pair of bottoms that are difficult to style? A chambray shirt. Denim is a non-intimidating neutral and it calms down any attention-grabbing bottoms you might have on — no matter the style, pattern or color. In this example, loosely tuck your chambray shirt into the front waist of your sweats, grab an on-trend clutch to further add some more polish to your look, and continue on your day like you didn't just watch five hours of Friends.
5. Transform It With Heels
It's no secret that if you add heels to a look it automatically changes the vibe of the outfit. When you have a dress on with ballet flats you look sweet; but add in strappy heels and you look elegant and sophisticated. Same thing goes with pants. Even the fleece-lined variety. Shrug on your favorite fitted jacket and pair the look with some metallic heels for a polished and playful contrast. But keep in mind: This will only work with form-fitting sweatpants. No amount of statement shoes will help your old high school gym class pair.
6. Layer Two Tops
You've probably gathered by now that the secret to pulling off this look is to distract away from the pants, whether it be with unexpected layers or with elegant, contrasting pieces. Continue with that trend by layering a printed button-down with a denim blouse, creating an appealing mix of color and pattern. If you want to keep the look on the more casual side, go with a gingham or plaid shirt, and leave it relatively unbuttoned for a relaxed vibe. Pair it with a denim button-down underneath and roll the chambray shirt at the cuffs to make it feel more intentional. Then, tuck the front of the hem into the waist of your pants, acting as if you have a pair of jeans on rather than sweats.
7. Surprise With Unexpected Layers
When pulling off this look, you have to play a delicate game of balance between shlubby and elegant. One wrong move and you can look like you just decided to pile on the first five things you saw in your closet that day. Toe the line between sporty and classy by pairing your sweatpants with a pair of strappy heels and a blazer... but then tying back the relaxed vibe with a well-made zip up hoodie. The key to pulling off these unexpected layers is to keep everything in the same color family. Go for a neutral and unobtrusive shade like gray to quiet down the unexpected pairing.
8. Go With A Patterned Pair
Instead of relying on other pieces in the look to add a splash of polish, let the pants do the work by choosing a pair that's tailored and patterned — delicately motiffed like a vase living in a brownstone. Let the pants do all the talking by pairing them with a white button-down, but tie in the casual factor by leaving the top carelessly unbuttoned and rolled up at the sleeves.
9. Match With A Styled Top
Again, weave yourself a world of denial and act like those sweats are the same as a sleek pair of pants. Pair them with loafers and one of your prettiest tops, acting as if you don't have on the pants you slept in. To give the look more of a casual vibe, only half-tuck the hem of your shirt, giving you a polished-sloppy hybrid look.
10. Go Fancy With Your Footwear
We've tried heels and statement prints, but another option to disguise your lazy-day styling is to go with a minimalist but tailored pair. You know how a well-made pair of shoes can change a whole outfit? That applies here as well. Go for a sleek, unfussy pair like these metallic loafers so they can both blend and contrast against the comfy ensemble.
11. Pair It With Blazers
Treat this look like a mullet: Business in the front, party in the back. Pair your top-half with a tailored blazer and a structured cross-body bag, and then go all-out comfy with your bottoms and choose a sporty, striped pant and sneakers. In order for this to work, make sure your silhouette is sleek and try to stay in the black and white color family to give it a touch of polish. Now when you come home, all you have to do is toss the blazer and dive right back into the fourth season of Gilmore Girls.
Images: Fotolia; Courtesy J. Crew Lookbook 2014