Sportswear from big fashion brands is commonplace today. Another drop of designer sneakers does not surprise anyone, and the catwalks are storming every year with comfortable joggers and oversized hoodies. Sneakers even temporarily pushed bags as the main objects of desire of all fashionists - for the Balenciaga Triple S and Prada Cloudbust, until recently, customers were ready to stand in lines, as they once did for Hermès Birkin bags. It's easy to think that it has always been this way - we have already "grown together" with all these tracksuits and sneakers. But in fact, brands began to tread carefully into this territory only in the 90s. In 1997, Prada launched the iconic America's Cup sneakers - and became pioneers in this direction. Before that, no one dared to take such a step. But what is there - Karl Lagerfeld even owns the famous phrase aboutthat "sweatshirts" on a person usually indicate that he has lost control of his life. So how and why did fashion suddenly change course from tuxedos and evening dresses to joggers and sweatshirts?
In fact, this process took much longer than we used to think. We can say that it was not a revolution, but evolution - a smooth, gradual process. It is easy to believe that Miuccia Prada came and, with her one decision, “legalized” designer sneakers - but we understand that it doesn't work that way. Gabrielle Chanel and Jean Patou were the first to borrow elements of sportswear in the 1920s. Patu even created the form for the famous tennis players of that time - just like some Virgil Abloh does now. And yet these were mostly allusions and hints - without direct quotes. Designers could borrow shapes or fabrics, but they never went into direct copying of certain things. It must be understood that it was exclusively about the functionality and comfort of sportswear. And never - about its very aesthetics.This is what distinguishes the early attempts to bring sports into fashion from modern athleisure - a style at the intersection of sportswear and homewear.
The 1980s saw a boom in fitness - gyms began to pop up like mushrooms after rain, and Jane Fonda's exercise tapes were literally in every home. The market for sportswear, of course, has also grown - and it has become possible to wear it not only for group training. And if the always impeccable princess Diana was not afraid to leave the house in bicycles and sweatshirts, then ordinary mortals have every right to do so. At the same time, athleisure style began to appear in its modern sense - as the use of sports elements for purely aesthetic purposes. True, back then, mostly more democratic American brands like Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger were not afraid to work in this direction. And here we go back to Prada, with which we started. They really turned out to be the first big brandwho decided to introduce sportswear into its range. Moreover, in 1998 they launched the full-fledged Prada Sport line, later renamed Linea Rossa. There appeared the first designer sneakers, and the famous nylon, and bombers with joggers - not for "rocking", but for every day.
Well, in the 2000s and 2010s, the trend took off - and reached its peak in the last few years. And the recent global lockdown, of course, only strengthened it - we had to spend many months at home in sweatshirts and joggers. So for now it will not go anywhere - but it may well take some new forms. In the end, we are already fed up with the endless conveyor of HYIP sneakers - and the fashionable public is always in search of something fresh. So we will wait for new ideas.