Quarantine calls for a new wardrobe


(Tahlia Amanson)

By Kennedy Enlowsmith

Remember when everyone would show up to school exhausted, rushing out the door in sweatpants and hoodies because we were all too busy and lazy to care and take time on our style? Although there have been many drawbacks from the COVID-19 pandemic, the hours of extra time and boredom over staying at home has allowed many Tam students to improve on their fashion sense and become more confident in their look. Over the past seven months, Tam fashion has evolved as the social scene of school has gone away and social media has become more popular, allowing students to explore their style more thoroughly.

Tam Junior Alice Mcgee states that quarantine has given her the freedom and confidence to explore new styles without fear of judgment. “When you’re away from the ‘norm’ or like social settings you tend to dress more for yourself. Even now I see clothes I wanna buy but in the back of my head ‘I would never wear them to school because people would stare while I’m walking around,”’ Mcgee said. McGee now describes her style as “alt” (alternative or edgy) as she often wears fishnets, plaid skirts, and large boots that she didn’t wear before, now making her stand out from the crowd. A popular belief is that the standards of “cool” and “uncool” can make the school environment toxic and hard to dress more freely. By doing school online, it dismantles the social fears many high schoolers face going to school every day because there’s no one to critique their style. Tam junior Sabina Safavi agrees, “I’d say quarantine has allowed me to express my style more freely cause I don’t have to worry about getting judged,” Safavi said as she now is often seen wearing clothes that break the norms. 

Not only has quarantine allowed Tam teens to gain more confidence in their look, but also spend more time exploring new styles and improving on their fashion skills with the extra time at home. “At the start of quarantine I’d say I dressed more masculine with baggy pants and shirts, but now I’m more into wearing tighter shirts, skirts, dresses, etc., and my makeup skills have gotten better over quarantine,” Mcgee said. 

Junior Andrew Saltzman has also been able to improve his look with the extra time on his hands by getting a job. “Since I now have more time with school online, I got a part-time job so I now can buy my own clothes and don’t take as many hand-me-downs as before. I have more of my own sense of fashion now,” Saltzman said as he often is seen sporting a Carhartt jacket and thrifted jeans.

Social media is also responsible for the shift of Tam fashion and general teen fashion in the US. Since many Tam teens haven’t been able to keep busy due to the limitations that come along with a pandemic, many students have started turning to social media, sparking fashion inspiration. 

Tam Junior Jackson King believes Depop (a popular fashion app for thrifting) has had an impact on his style over the pandemic. “Since I now have so much time on my hands, I’ve spent a lot of time bored scrolling through Depop. At this point most of my clothes are second hand,” King said. 

King describes his style as “grunge” and “vintage” and tends to always have his own original look, especially over COVID. “Buying clothes on Depop and quarantine has allowed me to get more comfortable with my image and that has allowed me to take more risks, for example, I shaved my head,” King said. Overall social media has helped King take risks with his look. 

Mcgee also agrees that social media has influenced her change in fashion over quarantine by giving her inspiration. “Being on social media 24/7, I’ve seen more and more videos from Tik Tok and Instagram of people who I’d love to dress like because their style gives me confidence,” Mcgee said. 

With the social scene of school slowly fading away and social media becoming more popular, Tam’s fashion has evolved over quarantine. The pandemic has allowed many students to break out of their shell, branching out of norms, and experimenting with styles that they never would’ve thought of wearing before. With all the negative events that have come along with the pandemic, fashion and self-improvement are both seeing positive outcomes. Hopefully, fashion and self-improvement will continue to spread light through the darkness.