DIY

I Styled My Pajamas As Work Outfits For A Week And Can’t Believe I Didn’t Do This Sooner

by Lauren Turner

My family has a Christmas tradition that has stuck with me over the years. While other kids were opening gifts the night before, my sister and I were changing into brand-new pajamas. My mom would get a pair for everyone, and before you ask — no, they didn’t all match. But the excitement surrounding something as simple as Christmas pajamas has never left me. Instead, it’s transformed me into a collector of sorts. My sister and my boyfriend both think it’s strange, but to me, pajamas are the ultimate cozy, at-home feeling that pairs perfectly with a freshly made bed and a new (OK, sometimes old) book.

My strong feelings surrounding sleepwear make it that much more shocking that it’s taken me 26 years to consider turning my pajamas into work outfits. I mean, it’s a bit of a no-brainer because of the line of work that I’m in: writing from my bed/couch/library and corralling kiddos to and from their social engagements. Why have I not been wearing pajamas this whole time? Do you know how many minutes this would shave off my morning routine? How many times I can hit snooze and literally roll out of bed and go to work?

My prediction for this experiment: Turning my pajamas into work outfits won’t be that hard, purely based on how many sets of pajamas I already own. It will, unfortunately, only make me want to buy more, but whatever. Seeing some of the classy outfits that have been put together using pajamas only solidified why I was doing this: to be chic and comfy AND maximize my wardrobe. Plus, I saw Carole Radziwill wearing a pair of black satin pajamas to breakfast with Tinsley on Real Housewives of New York, and I knew I just had to try it for myself.

Day 1: Before Styling

Day 1: Before Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

Starting this week on my work-from-home day meant that I could wear my least-work-appropriate pajamas, and do so comfortably. So naturally (or not so naturally), I ended up driving to the mountains and making quite the scene. What started as a set of pajamas from Urban Outfitters circa 2014 ended in a combination of something golf-ready, and also circa 2014.

Day 1: After Styling

Day 1: After Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

I tossed a men’s shirt around my neck (but almost immediately put it on my arms because I was cold). My corn-dog socks and dirty Cons weren’t intentional; I felt like they went with my sporty look. On the drive up, I got to experience the first round of expressions from the local mountain folk. When I stopped to get a burger, I spent the entire time looking around suspiciously. I wanted to watch everyone around me, and I was hoping to see people do some serious double-takes.

Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

My prayers were answered when a few families came into the restaurant; the moms were not stoked on my look.

Once we got settled at the house in the mountains, I scurried to the store to get some dinner items, totally not thinking about my pajama outfit. That is, until every other person in there gave me the visible up and down, just before making a face. All righty, then.

Day 2: Before Styling

Day 2: Before Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

I don’t know about y’all, but to me, robes are life. I feel like a noir movie star whenever I have one on, and all I want to do is lounge with a martini. Wearing this piece of sleepwear as day wear was surprisingly the easiest thing I’ve ever done. I think we can call it a week, because I’m never taking it off again.

Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

(I had to share.)

Day 2: After Styling

Day 2: After Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

Because this satin robe is so colorful and bright, I thought pairing it with a simple black maxi dress would make a perfect outfit for strolling around town. And I was right! Everyone I passed sent a friendly smile my way, which was a night-and-day difference from yesterday’s interactions.

Day 3: Before Styling

Day 3: Before Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

This sexy nightie has been styled into my wardrobe more than once, but never for work purposes. I’m not really sure it can be styled for work, but here goes nothing.

At first, I tried throwing a sheer black dress over it, but it was too small. I then turned to a jacket, thinking that it might provide some much-needed coverage, but remembered that it’s 90 degrees outside (Colorado weather is unpredictable, y’all). Back to the drawing board.

Day 3: After Styling

Day 3: After Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

I remembered I own this little white tee that actually might have belonged to a baby before finding its way into my closet. I tied a button-up around my waist because the nightgown is a little sheer (surprise, surprise). I felt sporty and very ’90s, and no one knew that I was wearing PJs. I actually had a few people ask if this outfit was a one-piece deal.

Day 4: Before Styling

Day 4: Before Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

The outfits for today and tomorrow are taken from a summer pajama set that I found at Nordstrom Rack last year. I absolutely love this getup, but I 100% look like I’m wearing pajamas, so I decided to split up the outfit into two separate ones (genius, I know).

Day 4: After Styling

Day 4: After Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

I was running around all day doing errands, not thinking about whether or not my bra was showing. Two moms complimented me on my top, and I laughed out loud. And other than the strings on the side of the top ticking the inside of my arm a few times, I was in love with my creation.

No one really noticed that I was wearing a pajama shirt, and I felt like I was part of that group of trendy people who look put together when they throw “oh, this old thing” on.

Day 5: After Styling

Day 5: After Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

For the second portion of this pajama set’s transformation into work clothes, I struggled a bit with what to pair the shorts with. Being covered in what look like pineapples and suns, I didn’t want to go overboard with color. Plus, they were short as the dickens! At first I paired them with an open-back crew-neck T-shirt, but I felt too exposed and not ready to be around kids. I changed into a sleeveless white button-up instead and put a bodysuit underneath to make sure my parts all stayed intact.

Despite my efforts to keep it PG, as soon as I started walking, I realized why these shorts are meant for sleeping. With every step, they slid up. Is my butt out? Faaantastic.

 

Day 6: Before Styling

Day 6: Before Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

After digging through my milk crate of PJs, I found a long-lost and forgotten cream chemise-type shirt. I was rushed for time, so I decided I was going to throw it on top of my black maxi dress.

I had to use a bit of fashion tape to keep the sleeves from sliding down and practically falling off. Again, now I know why I only wear this to bed.

 

Day 6: After Styling

Day 6: After Styling
Courtesy of Author for LittleThings

After work, I was planning on going to a fundraising event downtown, then meeting up with a friend. I packed gold espadrille wedges in my bag to change into later and added earrings. Everyone liked my shirt, and liked it even more when they found out it was technically a pajama item.

Day 7: Feelings

Day 7: Feelings

This was the best decision I’ve ever made. I don’t think I’ll ever go back to separating my day wear from my sleepwear again, because at the end of the day, they’re all just clothes. And styling pajamas into work outfits is great way to cut down on buying new things that I don’t need. All I need to do is open a different drawer, and that opens a world of possibilities.

But I find myself wondering the age-old question: If I start wearing my pajamas as work outfits, will I wear my old work outfits to sleep? 😳