Dressing Up the Statement Sweatshirt

proenzasweatshirt2

I grew up in Florida, where formalwear is practically extinct. Shorts are worn year-round, and flip flops are donned in the office with impunity. But that 24/7 casual vibe is SO not me.

For that reason, I’ve been wary of the sweatshirt trend — I’ve always believed that sweatshirts are for sleeping and Netflix binging — not for public appearances.

Sweatshirt: Proenza Schouler x Target | Navy Blazer: Love... Ady (Lord & Taylor) | Earrings: Forever 21 | Boyfriend Jeans: Madewell | Tote Folded Over as Clutch: WANT Les Essentiels de la Vie (Bird)
Sweatshirt: Proenza Schouler x Target | Navy Blazer: Love… Ady (Lord & Taylor) | Earrings: Forever 21 | Boyfriend Jeans: Madewell | Tote Folded Over as Clutch: WANT Les Essentiels de la Vie (Bird)

I was originally wearing this sweatshirt and these roomy jeans to lounge around my apartment. But when I layered the paint-splattered top with a cropped blazer, the combination suddenly looked like… an actual non-pajamas outfit.

I think this particular sweatshirt works because of the artistic print, which is abstract enough to resemble a blouse. (This sweatshirt is long out of stores, but you can find it on eBay here. And this Mandala sweatshirt would be another nice option.)

To keep the look for appearing sloppy, I layered on the gold rings, neon earrings and folded my trusty tote bag in half to create an impromptu clutch. (For detail shots, scroll down to the end of the post.) I also skipped a ponytail, which would have sent the sweatshirt into “going to the gym” territory.

White Boots: Vintage
White Boots: Vintage

This was also the first time I wore these vintage white boots, which I bought for a song at a secondhand store. Their slouchy shape and perforated design is SUPER 80s — they could easily be part of a Pretty in Pink costume. I’m still trying to determine which silhouettes work best with these boots — with skirts, they tend to look a little stumpy. (I’m sure my experiments will appear on the blog.)

I folded over the tote to use it as a clutch.
I folded over the tote to use it as a clutch.

I am still a teensy bit ambivalent about the sweatshirt trend. (Sue me, I ascribe to the notion that beauty is pain.) But it’s nice to know that there’s at least one way to make a sweatshirt suitable for the outside world.

  • Andrea Billups

    I think the boots work. They are just enuf off-kilter to be cool. typically, i wouldn’t like at all. i hate the booties look on anyone over 110 pounds and under 5’7″ — but this looks fresh. Snaps.