Pret a Pandemic: The Covid Capsule Wardrobe

The days are long, the past year has not been short. 90% of my wardrobe is mothballed and 10% has developed fabric pills and decaf mocha latte stains from over-use. High heels and floral flats are gathering dust but I’ve gone through four pairs of sneakers. After 365 days (March 6, 2020 – March 6, 2021) of lock downs, quarantines, remote work, drive-by holidays and social distance walks, I’ve got my capsule wardrobe down.

Get Going Gear: Not just for jogging and HIIT workouts! Essential for power-walking through the grocery store while dodging anti-maskers, making rapid U-turns to follow the arrows, and sprinting for the scant supply of cleaning supplies. Also, we must obey the Apple watch overlords and ladies and close the “Activity ring” every day. (“You can do it with a brisk 9 minute walk!”)

Zoom-Appropriate: Keep near to home office nook so you’re able to throw on while saying “oh right, need to turn on my video, hang on a sec.” Notice tops only, as assume wearing leggings, pajamas or shorts on bottom half. Helpful hint: keep alternate scarves and jewelry on hand to create illusion of more than two outfits.

Message Me T-Shirts: 2020 moved party dresses, suit jackets and date night outfits to the back of the closet. (Zoom weddings and the Golden Globes aside.) Life may not have been that good in the past 365 days, but you can express yourself clearly and comfortably. Channel Jane Austen or RBG! Promote climate change! Pronounce that “Life is Good” or to “EEFFOC off” depending on your mood!

Lounge-A-Not-GoGo: Mindlessly watching Lip Sync Battle clips on YouTube? Obsessively monitoring election returns? Stress shopping on Wayfair or Etsy? Binge watching Bosch or Bridgerton? The 3S rules applies: Stretchy, Soft, Shades of Grey & Black.

Winter Weather Wearables: No matter if you live in New Hampshire or Texas, you need a parka the size of a small sleeping bag and fleece-lined leggings. (My talented & amazing mother, daughter and grand-daughters made me the headband, neck warmer, leggings and finger-less gloves.) I can venture out in any weather! Like -10 wind chill. In March. At 6:30 am. To start the generator. Because the power went out.

Summer Living (Had Me A Blast): Covid didn’t magically go away in summer 2020, but luckily the great outdoors didn’t either. Was prepared for hikes, kayaking and beach-going at all times! Never forgot the all-important travel mug, that sometimes, possibly, maybe contained Tito’s.

Next-Normal Essentials: A mask along with hand washing/sanitizer is the scientific equivalent of giving the middle finger to Covid 19. And the hip new fashion statement for 2021 is double-masking, along with post-vaccination Band-Aids! I guess people who are anti-masks and anti-vaccines not only shun science and sensibility, but look forward to headaches, trouble breathing and high temperatures with risk of hospitalization and death, and potentially sharing those super-fun experiences with others.

Want some of the hats and shirts featured in some of the photos? Check out Dancing Madly Backwards online store at:, and when the ice melts and the temps get a bit higher, take a paddle tour, sign your kids up for kayak camp & buy some gear at Seven Rivers Paddling, located at BG’s Marina in Portsmouth NH: Both are New Hampshire native owned & operated. Have fun and wear local!

And #KeepWearingMasks, #GetVaccinatedWhenItsYourTurn, #ShopLocal, #TakeOutLocal and donate to charities like food banks to support those who need help to get through this difficult time.

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