My Quest for Chicer Sleep 

If integrity is what we do when no one is watching, then you might infer that pajamas are the closest approximation to our honest self. As a teenager indoctrinated by glossy fashion magazines, I assumed that with age would come sophisticated sleepwear. When I was older—I imagined—I would wear matching lingerie sets in oxblood and baby blue during the day and shimmering pajama sets at night. Birthdays came and went, but I kept crawling under the covers in a rotating cast of cotton worn thin from endless dryer cycles and high-waisted briefs. 

As an excuse, I might blame my 6’2” frame for my disappointing pajama trajectory. The average pajama makes me look like a scarecrow , with exposed forearms and wrists. Opting for tall mens styles from outdoors mainstays like Land’s End and L.L.Bean has been a band aid. But instead of drifting to sleep feeling sophisticated, I feel like a character out of Little House on The Prairie. And by character,  I mean Pa.  

As 26-year-olds are wont to do, I set out to change my life by changing my outfit. Pajamas are not just for sleeping; they’re what you wear when nobody’s watching. I acquired aspirational sleepwear, the silky kind cool girls wear to flashy dinners with platform heels and a cateye. My drawer of oversized cotton was dumped in some dark corner of my closet.

Arriving home late with a looming deadline, I decided to test my hypothesis that expensive pajamas might carry the transformative property of imbibing the everyday with meaning, even while awake. I slipped into a pair of Sleeper’s Party Pajamas, which have become a de facto sleepwear off-duty look over the past few years. The effect was instant. There was something undeniably glamorous about wearing feathers to update a gift guide at my dining room table. 

Sleeper Party pajamas set with detachable feathers in black

Sleeper striped pajama set

Sleeper Party pajamas set with detachable feathers in white

Sleeper Party pajamas set with detachable feathers in blue vichy

Writer and consultant Chrissy Rutherford has always had a thing for matching pajama sets. “As I’ve gotten older, I’ve definitely become more intentional about cultivating a wardrobe of sleepwear that I enjoy,” she notes. “It’s just part of my routine, like taking a bath, taking care of my skin, why not add a luxurious pajama set?  These are things I do that make me feel good.” I phoned Tori Simokov, a fellow tall person and noted Main Character advocate, to get her take. Turns out, she’d resolved to wear better pajamas this year. “All of a sudden I had a vision of myself as someone who was more deliberate in the way they went to bed,” she explained to me. “I am someone who searches for pleasure in small things; choosing to wear nice PJs is such an easy way to find it.”

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