It's all About Sport Style
By Nikki Goldup
Showing up in yoga pants, or training kit, anywhere outside of the gym was once seen as a step too far, yet athleisure and sportswear looks are now entrenched in the heart of fashion. With lifestyle changes, including a focus on health and wellbeing, working from home and limited time to go from training-to-meeting-to-town, consumers are opting for sports styles, flaunting their healthy lifestyle, and ultimately choosing clothing that is comfortable and suits their active lives.
These lifestyle changes have influenced high-end fashion, with houses hopping on the sports-style wagon, embracing tech design and sports silhouettes in their ready to wear collections. Chanel, Gucci, Dior, Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton now offer couture trainers while Fendi, Chloé and Hermès have launched sports capsule collections.
Most recently, there have been rumours that Prada is re-launching its iconic late 90’s ‘Prada Sport’ line, a range noted for a crossover between street and sports style, so look out for those red rubber labels seen in Prada’s recent SS18 shows.
Nike and Adidas continue to elevate their brand’s cult status through collaborations with high profile designers. Adidas has spun collabs with Stella McCartney and Yohji Yamamoto into permanent collections. Reebok’s association with UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) has revived the classic brand, offering innovative performance fabrics and on-point designs. In a smart move, Fila has refreshed classic design elements, combining its iconic red, white and blue colours and heritage of Italian styling to raise the profile of the brand as one both for sport and street wear. Australian Tennis pro and brand ambassador Ashleigh Barty rocked Fila's latest Heritage collection at the recent Australian Open, gathering recent press attention, a successful media coup.
Add to the mix, celebrity endorsement. Think Beyoncé's Ivy Park line, Rihanna for Puma and the sought-after Adidas Yeezy by Kanye West and we have a high octane mix of desirability, style and functionality. The assurgency of 90s trends, notably brand t-shirts have further fuelled the sports look as we see millennials re-discovering Ellesse, Champion and Kappa.
Athleisure - ‘casual clothing designed to be worn for exercising and general use.’ 2016 Merriam-Webster's Dictionary
So, what is the relevance to riders and will we see trends filtering into equestrian collections? For many equestrians, clothing that can traverse from yard to gym and town is appealing, the addition of high performance fabrics and functionality make this a winning style combination.
Relative newcomer to the scene, Aztec Diamond, offer a range of pieces designed and aimed at a niche in the market for fashionable, tech laden, but affordable equestrian clothing for the young female rider. Their technical leggings, sweat pants and mesh sports bras all offering a definitive sports style in a range of on-trend colours.
Stierna Equestrian Sportswear is a Swedish company established in 2015.
The brand gets its energy from the concept of developing technical equestrian clothes with high functionality for active riders, enabling riders to perform optimally regardless of the weather.
The Stierna W Air Jacket is a contemporary styled wind jacket with a highly reflective finish to keep you warm and safe. Featuring stretch panels for mobility and ventilation.
The Reebok Layering Bralette is an ideal choice for riders as it features a wide elastic band at the hem to provide a stay-put fit, and moves with the body to prevent rubbing. Speedwick technology wicks sweat away from the body to help you stay cool and dry.
A high street option and a perfect layer going into spring is the HM Outdoor jacket.
The design is fitted and lightweight manufactured from a fast-drying thermal fleece with a hood, zip down the front, zipped side pockets and extra-long sleeves with thumbholes.
A new range to established equine label Montar, aptly named ‘Rebel’, offers pieces inspired from today’s fashion trends. Affordably branded t-shirts, sweats and breeches offer a little more edge and sports style to the teen rider market.
One garment making a massive comeback this season is the 80s inspired bodysuit, offering athletic clean lines and no-fuss dressing.
American brand ‘Free Rein’ have adapted the concept for the equestrian market, showcasing a variety of styles for leisure and competitive riding. The Moto body suit is made in soft jersey with mesh panelling and features an integral thong, it’s great for those who dread the ubiquitous VLP when riding and like a fluid sports-style silhouette.
For designer edge, and somewhere to stash your training kit check the Puma Fenty Unisex Giant Shopper.
The collection takes classic American collegiate style, featuring upscaled varsity styling, where preppy meets provocative. The shopper mixes faux fur and has a multi handles allowing it to be handheld, worn over the shoulder or as a backpack.