Fashionable fitness

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Workout gear is no longer just apt for the gym, lately these clothes are becoming trendy enough to be appropriate for work or any other mundane event not including working up a sweat given their versatility.

With the clothing materials becoming lighter and more functional, the lines are blurring between active wear and prêt-à-porter (ready to wear). The re-emergence of joggers has been substantial in their simple and slouchy nature, paired with all manner of V neck shirts allow the consumer to either dress the look up or dress it down. Following the same aesthetic, the use of more elaborate fabrics with sweats, which have become more tapered and pleated, make it harder to distinguish between hangout clothes and the sleeker, sharper guise that sports attire has adopted.

The cross functional allure of these hybrid items is that they are not only comfortable, but mostly adaptable for work or hanging out with friends. Fabrics like neoprene and cotton stand out among this style, along with abstract and colorful prints, zippers, pleats, and mesh. These new additions breathe new life into otherwise unremarkable attire such as hoodies, sweatpants and leggings.

“I wear clothes that put emphasis on movement, that are flattering but stretchy and comfy,” said Skyline student Dayaneira Jerez “I match my clothes always and like to dress up, but when I dance I wear loose shirts and non-restrictive clothing so finding a balance has significant importance to me”

To capitalize on the consumers craving for this all-purpose style, sports industry giants such as Adidas have partnered with high end fashion designers Yohji Yamamoto, Raf Simons, most noticeably Stella McCartney, even Pharrell Williams and, more recently Mary Katrantzou. Other brands include Lululemon Athletica Inc. and BLOOM known for their line of leggings and who have been pivotal in making it fully acceptable to wear workout apparel in day-to-day life. For chain stores like H&M; and Macy’s this growing casual meets chic coalescence has manifested in the form of increased sales. According to the NPD Group, a market research company estimated that the global sports apparel market is expected to grow $178 billion by 2019, according to Boston-based marketing firm Trefis.

“Lately there has been an increase in the amount of joggers, hooded sweaters and crew necks sold,” said H&M; sales associate Daniel del Castillo “this trend is important to us because women are looking for comfort especially during the fall season, and this inclination to look and feel relaxed but stylish is on the rise.”

Amber Steele, skyline’s dance and fitness instructor, embraces sportswear becoming more trendy as her job consists of constant movement and comfort is of major importance.

“I miss dressing in nice clothes, I can’t take it when my clothes are not stretchy and I’m spoiled and picky when it comes to active wear,” said Steele.