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Genre characters to cosplay while you work from home

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Mar 26, 2020, 2:30 PM EDT

Drawing influence from the closet of your favorite genre character is something that can be as subtle as wearing apparel featuring fictitious companies like Star Labs or going all-in dressed from head-to-toe in a detailed Rey or Iron Man costume. Halloween is a time to let your inner fan shine, whether taking inspiration from popular pop culture figures of the year or delivering up a deep cut from long ago. Social distancing in light of this current crisis means crowded events have currently been put on hold, but that doesn’t mean you can’t dress at home like the whole world is watching. Thanks to technology letting us stay connected (even when we are physically apart), we can still have fun with the clothes in our closets. Now more than ever we can use these garments as a way to inject some semblance of joy into our days to break up the monotony.

Working from home is something a lot more people are doing as a result of the COVID-19 virus, which means a change-up in the clothes that are now deemed work-appropriate. There is no right or wrong way to dress when you work from home, but there are elements to consider, particularly if you are now taking meetings over Zoom. Comfort is paramount, which is why any form of lounge/yoga/sweat pants tend to be high on the list of WFH outfit suggestions. As someone who usually works from home, I definitely have favored brands and styles of WFH outfits — stretchy waistbands are a must — but there are ways to inject whimsy into your daily look. If you want to work in your pajamas, there is nothing to say don’t work in your pajamas; however, once you have exhausted your home office-ready outfits maybe it's time to turn to your sartorial heroes — whether they wear a cape or not.

This is good practice for whenever con season returns. No matter if you want to go as a Marvel character, pull out your best '80s looks from Stranger Things, or get stuck in a Russian Doll fashion time loop, the time to get creative with what you already have in your closet is now. Here are some character cosplay scenarios for your WFH attire.

Credit: Netflix 

Teen TV

Typically teens lean into current fads, but the recent trend on television tells a different vintage-leaning story. The retro knitwear of Sabrina Spellman, the lace collars preferred by the Weird Sisters, and Betty and Veronica’s penchant for prep-flavored Riverdale costumes showcase chic and cute styles, which provide a break from athleisure. The River Vixens cheer squad is one way to stay true to your sweats: you can take a break from your screen to indulge in some much needed indoor yoga/cheer routines/YouTube workout. Put on the Riverdale soundtrack to add that extra layer of authenticity.

Credit: 20th Century Fox Television

The ‘90s is the decade that refuses to quit, so if you have always dreamed of Buffy Summers' spaghetti straps or have a hankering to turn to the teens of I Am Not Okay With This for style advice, now is the time to let your inner adolescent girl power shine via your wardrobe. I Am Not Okay With This is also a good example of how to do the ‘90s in a contemporary setting, but instead of hitting your local thrift store (unless they are still doing online shopping), rifle through your closet instead. This is good for sustainability and you never know what you might find stashed at the back.

Going further back in time, dig out those graphic prints or even a Levi's Season 3 tie-in shirts to get the Stranger Things aesthetic. This show has a seemingly endless supply of collaborations or Hawkins-themed apparel, so the options are rather substantial. The mall is closed but that doesn't mean you can't put on your sailor finest to join the Scoop Troop.

Credit: Marvel Studios

Superhero

Going full Batman or Captain Marvel might seem like an out-there choice, particularly if you are meant to be showing your face on a video call, but call this the new casual Fridays — because every day is casual now. Superhero options are endless, which doesn’t necessarily mean you have to put on tight spandex. Sitting behind a desk with that little breathability is fun for no one.

Maybe try Carol’s casual Nine Inch Nails outfit or even a dash of Peggy Carter’s lipstick. The cosplay doesn’t have to be the entire head-to-toe affair. The essence of the character can be distilled into a bold red lip or a ‘90s band tee.

Credit: Warner Bros

Birds of Prey is now available on VOD and luckily for you, we already did a "Where to Shop” selection for the movie that sets a high bar for DCU fashion. Wear as much glitter as you can and let your inner Harley shine.

Now is also the time to let your creative side take over and devise your own alter ego. Is your power keeping the apartment clean or cooking something spectacular with the leftover ingredients in your fridge? Are you motivating your kids to do their school work or keeping a healthy work/leisure schedule? Put together a fabulous outfit to match and you can join Harley's squad.

Credit: HBO

Big Franchise Fantasy

Do you already have a Jedi robe in your closet? Are you more partial to a cloak from The Lord of the Rings? Even if you don’t own either, a hooded bathrobe or even a bedsheet can be transformed into Star Wars or hobbit attire. This is for when you don’t really want to show your face but know you have to hit accept on that video call.

Or maybe you have an IKEA rug that's just waiting to be turned into a Night's Watch uniform. Game of Thrones might be over, but the craft possibilities are endless when you utilize the items that are already in your house. And to make it that much more authentic, grab a coffee cup to stick in the shot while you chat with your coworkers — then blame it being there on an unseen presence.

Credit: Columbia Pictures

Witches

As we already know, witches are a stylish force to be reckoned with and you can use this period at home to pay homage to your personal favorite. Joining the ranks of '90s style queens, check-in with the teens of The Craft or the boho vibe of Practical Magic. For any extreme '60s or '70s fabric that might be in your wardrobe, may we suggest Bewitched? And for those more low-key beatnik vibes, look no further than Bell, Book and Candle.

As previously mentioned, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina is slaying on every style level included in Zelda's super glamorous closet, which has taken a turn for the Daphne du Maurier when it has been required. Casting their sartorial spell on TV and giving Stevie Nicks a run for her witchy fashion money is the coven on American Horror Story, adhering to a strict monochrome dress code (with a few notable exceptions). If you take a lead from any of these women, you will cast a spell on your WFH style.

Credit: Universal Pictures

Horror

Is it appropriate to wear a Michael Myers mask while working from home? That is your call to make, but the mechanic coveralls sure are a comfy option. As Jordan Peele proved with Us last year, this garment is even more striking in red. Keeping with the 2019 theme, if you want to start making your Midsommar May Queen headdress and floral gown, now is your chance to start. A flower crown is an effective way to add some cheer into your hairdo of choice — even if they are inherently creepy. Coachella and Glastonbury have either been postponed or canceled so get that wear out of this accessory from the comfort of your sofa.

For a touch of menacing whimsy, the Freddy Krueger stripes are one way to let the scary movie cosplay leap out. For the less subtle, a Ghostface mask is a way to go. And to up the Scream levels, find a way to distort your voice. Also on the Killer Style list is Chucky's classic stripes and denim overalls combo, perfect for toddlers and adults alike. The world is a scary place right now so it might be wise to check in on whether your colleagues will get a kick out of this before going full Hannibal mask.

Credit: Netflix 

Power Suits

If you wear a suit to the office the thought of wearing one at home is probably not very appealing, but now is the time to embrace your inner Dana Scully or John Wick.

Suits to draw inspiration from include Natasha Lyonne's cool af time-loop closet on Russian Doll or Alana Bloom taking a page from Hannibal Lecter's fashion bible. Masculine-meets-feminine tailoring has been a big trend of the last decade, so don't let social distancing stop you from embracing this chic home office option if you want to indulge in this genre-approved costume choice.

Credit: BBC America

Fancy

Sure, James Bond has holstered his weapon until November, but why let this dampen your fancy attire spirits? Weddings, birthday celebrations, and gala events have been postponed due to COVID-19 and while these are non-work parties, maybe bring the black tie to the nine-to-five routine. Think the Doctor's interpretation in the recent "Spyfall," which pairs a version of her signature shorter pants and boots with a formal coat, shirt, and snazzy bow tie.

Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures

If your kids are dressing up as their favorite Disney characters, join them. Fashioning a huge gown might not be the easiest option for work but at least it will break the monotony. My instant glam cosplay temptation is my wedding dress, which is a similar shape to the Ready or Not silhouette. And while I will avoid fake blood, I am edging closer to wearing it with a pair of Converse at my desk.

Sometimes you have to go all-in on your working attire, even from the comfort of your own home.

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