Most people tend to identify with their occupation and dress accordingly so it can be quite difficult to decide what to wear on a daily basis when you are a Stay at home Dad.
Practicality tends to dictate most of the time so you end up in your normal house clothes which, when they become your everyday wear can be a bit depressing.
As you don’t want to spend all day in your dagiest I’ve found it helpful to find a theme that you like and get dressed in that theme every work day. I’ve identified a couple of themes below but the only limit is the imagination. These are not gender specific so substitute ‘Mum’ where the word ‘Dad’ is and the girls can use the same themes as well.
Sporty Dad looks like he is just about to run onto some kind of sporting field in his track suits, t-shirts and running shoes. It’s important never to match tops and bottoms or even brands (e.g. Puma top with Puma track pants is a no no) .
You want to look like you are on your way to the gym not on your way home from it so you might have to spend a couple of bucks and get some decent trackies that you wear only for your days as a stay at home dad.
The daggy house trackies all covered in balls of fluff with the bum dragging around the middle of your thighs might be great for watching telly on the weekend but should never be seen outside the house.
The Smart Casual Dad would look like someone who is always going out to lunch. Jeans and casual shirts with jackets and joggers or even dress shoes. Especially good in urban areas with well paved footpaths and lots of cafe culture.
Remember stay at home dads, you’ll still be chasing kiddies around so don’t get caught in your best pointy suede boots in the muddy playground. Practicality must also be a factor so fashion must not dictate 100%.
The Home Renovator Dad would wear any kind of work gear. He should look like he is just about to head home and knock up a new tree house then cook dinner and bath the kids before Mum comes home. Drill shorts and work boots with fleece vests, T-shirts and caps would be the order of the day.
As with Sporty Dad you need to look like you haven’t started work yet.(i.e. clean and tidy) otherwise you will feel just as crappy as you do when you are in your house clothes all day.
Artist Dad wears all black all the time. He never takes his sunglasses off and cannot be found in the park until well after midday. This is generally pretty practical except for the fact that snot and milk show up really well on black. Tie died shirts or strategically placed scarves can help cover up these blemishes.
The ‘I used to be a corporate guy Dad’ look is one that involves wearing all of your old office gear minus the ties and jackets. The shoes can be a bit of a hassle but you can swap them with a pair of joggers if you need to. The dry cleaning costs can also make this prohibitive.
I personally don’t really like this look as it shows a lack of acceptance of the Stay at home dad role and a hankering for the good old office days when you were earning all the bucks and had perceived bigger balls. Why not undo the top button on all your old business shirts and match them up with a pair of jeans and joggers for a more smart casual dad look instead?
I’ve chosen to go with the ‘Sporty Dad’ theme. I find this the most practical as it is really comfy and washable and it can even make you look and feel a bit fit and healthy if you wear some nice looking and fitting gear.
It’s also much easier to run around in and throw your kids up and around in the park without worrying about tearing the back side out of your best trousers.
The important thing Dads (and Mums) is to get up and get ready everyday in your Stay at home dad uniform. Have a shower and a shave and get dressed as if you were going to any other job.
Having your own Stay at home dad dress code also helps you to feel like you have a purpose during the day. It also enables you to dress ‘normal’ on the weekends or any other time you are not on duty and so keep a little bit of your own identity.
When you get up and dressed and looking good you will feel good and be more inclined to get out of the house and socialize with people. Being the stay home parent can be quite isolating and even more so if you pretend that you are not home when someone comes to visit at midday, just because you are still in your pajamas.
Look good, feel better…