The activewear revolution

Sunday, November 16th, 2014

I watched What Not to Wear religiously throughout the show’s ten season run and can still see Stacy London’s disapproving frown at the sight of someone standing in front of the show’s infamous three way mirror in baggy sweat pants. She not only disliked sweat pants but she also felt that exercise clothing should only be worn when working out. Those days are gone. No longer reserved for the gym or yoga class, workout apparel has become the latest chic men and womenswear trend. As I see it, the amazing evolution of activewear designs combined with our increasingly casual lifestyle account for this phenomenon.

Whether you are young or old, a marathoner or a couch potato, the love of activewear is universal because it is comfortable and affordable. Designers like Alexander Wang, who recently created an activewear inspired collection for H&M, have their fingers on the pulse of what people want. Elie Tahari’s Designation collection for Kohl’s is flavored with a French terry jogger pant and faux fur sweatshirt. Retailers everywhere have enhanced their activewear offerings in response to the surge in sales of this clothing category. I recently discovered Nordstrom’s line called Zella. My sister gave me two pairs of Zella pants, two tops and a jacket for my birthday this year. All the pieces fit like a dream and also have fabulous features like ruching and strategically placed mesh inserts that give them an ultra–hip look.

Active wear is such a formidable fashion force that it has influenced how we dress on a daily basis. Instead of reaching for my skinny jeans, I now put on my yoga pants to run errands. Although I still love my ballet flats, I’ve become quite attached to my puma sneakers. The line between active wear and street wear is so blurry that we might just start referring to activewear as “everywear”.

Active Wear is now Everywear