Why dress up when there is literally nowhere else to go? Then again, does clothing have to be tethered to a place, to an activity or to any other reason than the egotistical “to feel good”?
Who Wears What and Why is a series that asks this question as well as “what’s so bad about wearing sweatpants at home like everybody else?” (Nothing!) For one, for people whose relationships with clothes go beyond the basic human need for warmth and protection from basic elements, a change from sweats to jeans can spell the difference between cabin fever and a familiar sense of order.
What do you get when you combine tutu, workwear, Japanese grandma aesthetic and a nursery rhyme? That’s dancer and preschool teacher Tina Gimenez’s life and style right now. When she is not busy being the other half of clothing archive Ersatz, she wakes up to “Wheels on the Bus” and teaches ballet and dance from home.
She does all these while dressed in vintage Patis Tesoro, monogrammed Carl Jan Cruz “pambahay”, and custom workwear-inspired pieces by her friends Stacy Rodriguez and Carlos del Prado of EC—yes, she believes it still pays to wear something other than pajamas.
Tina implements a simple mantra to stay on top of things despite being stuck in her room most of the day: clothes as signals, clothes as signifiers of tasks and time.
“A lot of my routines within the day are marked by the clothes that I’m wearing,” she tells Lifestyle Inquirer over Zoom. “If I feel really lethargic that day then I will put on something literally more structured to hold myself up and just get through the day.”
She draws the line at wearing Comme to receive parcels. Fair enough.