Remember wearing proper trousers? Let me jog your memory | Jess Cartner-Morley

Not all trousers come with a matching sweatshirt. At some point you will want to dig out a smart pair again

Life skills I suspect I may have lost through what is heading towards a year of neglect include, but are not limited to: small talk for parties, lifts and chatty Uber drivers; how to survive a work day without uninterrupted access to a fridge; where anything is that is farther than the other side of the local park. Also, how to wear proper trousers. As in, the kind that don’t come with a matching sweatshirt. Remember them?

There is no urgency to relearning any of this, more’s the pity. But I can feel the gap between the old and the new me widen with every lockdown day. So rather than leave the full gamut of life-skills revision to the last minute, now seems a good time to get a jump on a few basics. Such as: how to do trousers that have fastenings and require you to choose a top. Smart trousers – the kind you wear to go to work rather than just work in, or to eat in a restaurant rather than pad about the kitchen – have been my wardrobe’s most neglected department since the pandemic began. When your public-facing persona is visible only from the waist up, top-loading your outfit is common sense. Out of sight, out of mind and all that.

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