As most working women know, picking the right outfit each day can be frustrating and extend their mornings by an unwelcome half an hour. One art director has had enough and has been wearing the same outfit to work every day for three years.
Matilda Kahl calls it her ‘uniform’. Three years ago, she made a radical decision about her work wardrobe. After seeing her male colleagues wearing almost the same outfit every day, she grew tired of the sartorial stress that had become part of her morning. Hoping to save time and energy, she decided to find an outfit she felt comfortable enough to wear every day.
Ms Kahl felt she already had enough choices to make day-to-day in her job at a creative advertising agency and did not want her morning routine to become another. She needed to be in many different settings during her day and did not want to worry about whether her dress would be suitable.
Ms Kahl finally decided to go shopping for her ultimate work outfit. She needed something classy, timeless and flexible for the many demands of her job. She also wanted something she could personalise and dress up.
In the end, she found the perfect blouse – a simple, modern white number with diagonal buttons and cuts in the sleeves. She bought 15 versions on the spot, in addition to six pairs of black trousers. To customise her outfit, she added a black bow around the collar of the blouse.
After Ms Kahl debuted her new look, she was happy to find that hardly anyone cared how she appeared in the office. Her ultimate aim of moving the focus away from her dress and on to her work was achieved.
A few months later, Ms Kahl told Harper’s Bazaar about her decision to wear the same outfit every day. The notion soon went viral. Ms Kahl was surprised to find that many women responded to the article and that wearing a ‘uniform’ as a woman became a provocative idea.
In her own life, the new look has revolutionised how Ms Kahl spends her mornings, giving her more time to relax and making her look at her wardrobe in a new way. Ms Kahl claims she now appreciates her other clothes much more, as they feel more special. At the weekend, she loves letting her hair down and being creative with her outfits.
Looking one particular way five days a week may not seem appealing; however, Ms Kahl says she will continue wearing her ‘uniform’ for as long as it makes her life more convenient and productive. Perhaps other working women could benefit from alleviating their own sartorial pressures and becoming more productive, relaxed and focused.
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