naked.jpgThe whole work-at-home phenomenon may have helped when it comes to work-life balance but it’s done little for fashion.

Yes, I’m blaming telecommuting for the hell so many employees find themselves in when it comes to dressing for work success.

Today, I wrote a column for on how women are in a Catch 22 when it comes to what they should be wearing to work. We’re either the office slut or the office stuck up bitch. But a big part of this problem stems from the telecommuting trend, according to Nancy Keene, executive recruiter who writes the blog “The Perfect Fit.”

“Think of the sales rep for Hewlett Packard who doesn’t have to go into the office often,” Keene said. That worker, she surmised, has lost grip with office-wear reality.

“It’s all a blur,” Keene continued, “between our personal and our public lives.”

Clearly I’ve lost it. Here’s a video I did this morning of what I wore to my home office today:

More and more of us are working at home whether we like it or not. Some companies are having workers spend more time working from home because they don’t want to pay to house you in their offices anymore; and many employers are hiring more contract workers and consultants, and often those folks end up doing a lot of work from their home offices.

The numbers of telecommuters keeps rising.

Gartner Dataquest reported in 2008 that 25% of workers telecommuted in 2007, and in their recent 2009 projections, they estimate that number to hit 27.5%.

The trend, said Keene, is making us all fashion nomads. She believes the problem began with Casual Fridays and has only escalated as more people get comfortable with their comfortable work-at-home wardrobes.

And clearly, the fashion world isn’t helping.

I wore my robe to work this morning because the fashion machine told me to.

Here’s a story about how the PJ-inspired look is in this season. Will you be wearing it to the office?pj.jpg They’re even pushing the PJ look for men. I’m thinking they’ll be feeling less pressure to adapt this look below. Right guys? What do you think?

I’d love to hear from you about the PJ look. But mostly I’d love to see what you’re wearing this morning.

If you get a chance, take a photo of your outfit, or have someone take a photo, and email it to me at

Come on, this exercise will help us all figure out the fashion-work puzzle.


OK, the first brave employee to share her outfit today is Anna Melhem, a paralegal for a Department of Justice office. She says, “My boss made everyday casual Friday, unless in meetings or court, so you know, its jeans and whatever pretty much every day in cool weather! This summer it was skirts only because of the heat.”

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