Although not many people are into sports to date, we cannot deny its influence in the fashion world. The use of tennis and leggings as a part of fashion is becoming more common. Over the centuries, the sports and fashion industries are coming together even more, and sports stars are beginning to set trends the way models do. As a result, wearing sports attire isn’t just becoming a norm everywhere but is also considered high fashion.
Many people recognize how sportswear anesthetizes the body. This has led to the sporty look trend as many people can be sported wearing a baseball cap or yoga pants without being interested in either. This new move is pushed even further by young pro athletes who brought a different audience to sports. Additionally, young designers are bringing a new spin to the sport through the use of streetwear. So, how did sports influence fashion happen? In this article, we’ll explore sports and fashion and their influence on one another. So, without further ado, let’s begin.
The Attraction of Tennis and Golf
When looking for new trends, you don’t have to go further than the successful integration of sportswear into fashion. Tennis was the first sport to influence fashion designers. It began with Jane Regny and Suzanne Lenglen, two tennis players who decided to move to fashion and started designing everyday activewear in Paris. The two recognized the importance of style and comfort and sought new ways to combine these in their designs. By the 1920s, the prep look was now a top option for the rich. In addition, college spring breakers took the style beyond the tennis court and kickstarted sport’s influence in fashion.
Today, as Gen-Zs continue to explore the TikTok platform, one of the most loved styles is wearing tennis and gold attires. After the pandemic, the world shifted to wearing comfy attires, a common sportswear feature. Therefore, the tennis skit became of the most coveted items by A-list celebrities, putting the sport of tennis at the very top of sports influencing fashion. Soon after, golf followed, with many people exploring golf attires as everyday wear.
Golf wears were quite clear and considered the fashion of rich children. However, it soon created a fashion trend with pastel colors and polo shirts from leading brands like Lacoste and Ralph Lauren. Additionally, the cashmere vest worn over a short sleeve shirt was common with golfers, and this look soon became one that distinguished the upper class even for those who didn’t play golf. An example of this fashion trend is seen in the Prince of Rap in Bel-Air, where Calton Banks, the rich and applied boy, wore cashmere vests over short sleeve shirts in direct contrast with his cousin Will.
MMA and the Tracksuit Revolution
Sportwear is soon becoming America’s contribution to the fashion world. Initially, sportswear was the fashionable and informal apparel women wore when watching professional sports. If you’ve ever wondered who was primarily responsible for the tracksuit revolution in the fashion industry, most would argue that it started with Bruce Lee, a famous martial artist. He was able to make polyester cotton and velour fashionable beyond the borders of the gym.
The 1960s came with a trend for nylon shorts and windbreakers in several psychedelic cottons. Due to this, manufacturers began to create color-coordinated nylon and cotton fabric tracksuits. They were primarily available in blues, reds, and grays. This was fast becoming synonymous with traditional sportswear.
Sports and Fashion: The Trainers Trend
We can also argue that tennis began the trend for sneakers making it to the streets as a fashion item. Although fashion sportswear has successfully evolved over the years, it increased even more fervently with Marc Jacobs adopting trainers as a fashion item. In the 1970s, Adidas created the Stan Smith tennis shoe, which was more a fashion item than it was for playing tennis. The running shoe also came into the picture and dominated high fashion. They were high-performance shoes that featured high prices.
The recognition of running shoes as a fashion item began with Run-DMC, who wore the Adidas Superstars sportswear everywhere they went. Sports, fashion, and music came together to create a powerful movement in all three worlds. Today, high-end sneakers have become a part of the denim culture. In addition, top designers like Gucci have embraced the trend, recognizing trainers as a wardrobe essential.
Gucci isn’t only the fashion industry that recognizes this trend, with Maison Margiela’s designer footwear also taking center. Several other top-quality shoes have been released in the fashion industry that you can add to your everyday sports shoe collection. Despite being marketed as sportswear, designers continue to release trainers that don’t even pretend the wearers would soon break into a job.
Sports and Fashion: The Introduction of Yoga Pants
We can’t determine the exact moment that yoga pants made it to the streets, but it soon became a fashion trend that wasn’t going anywhere. There’s a lot of courage in taking these curve-hugging pants to the street. However, many women are arguing that they’re so comfortable that it would be a foolish choice to take them off. The introduction of yoga pants into fashion took it off the rails even though there was already a unitard trend in the 1970s. However, these yoga pants were a high point and made it to the Museum of modern arts.
Sports and Fashion – The Influence of Football
We cannot speak about sports and fashion and ignore the influence of soccer in the fashion world. As major football clubs began to travel, they also influenced different countries beyond their home leagues regarding fashion. The power of exclusivity and the need to keep up with football stars led to the introduction of football casuals into the fashion scene. Wearing the latest fashion items from your team was now seen as a commitment badge to their fashion. Unfortunately, this area of fashion was greatly dominated by the uber-masculine who treaded with pride.
Sports and Fashion: The Influence of Boxing
Boxers like Floyd Mayweather are top customers for luxury fashion designers like Dapper Dan. This designer is also responsible for dressing Harlem rappers. The fashion entry into boxing soon moved beyond the boxing ring and became a look most artists explored in their music videos. The big shorts common with sports and bright colors began as typical clothing items in most music videos. Additionally, the embroidered robe with boxers that would enter the ring became a part of fashion as most musicians chose to wear this. It even became an haute couture garment in luxury fashion companies like Gucci.
Sports and Fashion: The Influence of Gymnastic
Although we can’t attribute the entrance of gymnasts to Madonna, we cannot deny that the warm stockings, colored tights, and bandannas are quite similar to the aesthetics of gymnasts. In the 80s, the gymnast dress made its way into fashion as women now wore it to go dancing. In this way, women went from high heels to tennis shoes with stockings over their legs, bandannas on their heads, and wide shirts with belts like they were going for aerobics. This all began with a move to imitate famous divas like Cindy Lauper, Madonna, and Olivia Newton-John. Of course, these divas would like popular wear such items in their music videos.
Sports and Fashion: The Influence of Basketball
A top sport that has dramatically influenced fashion is basketball. For many decades, it has been showcased in music videos and films. This was also linked with rap aesthetics as basketball was known to influence this musical genre strongly. Wide sleeveless shirts were a common fashion trend in the nineties rap music video.
In addition, films showcased this sport over the decades. An example is ‘Do the Right Thing,’ a movie set in Brooklyn in 1989. This movie had a lot of references to basketball fashion and included items like Jordan tennis, Lakers jersey, and many more. It was part of the movie’s aesthetics and showcased the racial tension between the movie characters.
Creating Limited Versions of Sportswear
A new trend that sportswear companies began is making limited versions of sneakers. This was a marketing strategy as many people were obsessed with collecting rare styles of athletic shoes, especially those made for skateboarding and basketball. This pattern started in the 1980s but has vastly expanded since then. Today the sportswear industry commonly creates collections that are only meant to fee demands. In addition, these special versions tend to push up costs since they’re only available in small supplies. Top fashion labels also explored this strategy by opening shops specializing in limited edition items alone.
Limited editions are symbolic as they reflect exclusivity and prestige. Many people also buy these limited editions to resell at a higher price. They’re so influential because they’re all over social media platforms. In addition, rappers, models, and musicians are seen wearing these models. However, this calls for a need to be vigilant about segmentation in the sportswear industry. There’s a need for companies to divide their different consumers into categories to be able to deliver products that succinctly satisfy demand.
Sports and Fashion – The Power of Athleisure
In the Athleisure space, fame and fortune are available for designers. There were many clashes between Louis Vuitton and Supreme at the beginning. However, there was an eventual collaboration between the two brands. This luxury fashion and streetwear collaboration marked a moment where the distinction between fashion wear and sportswear finally disappeared. The partnership also proved that athleisure is here to stay. Although many fashion trends seem to come and go, the connection between high fashion and street trends will see much sportswear on the catwalk for many years.
Sports and fashion are becoming even more connected as the years go by, with sportswear building a place in the design industry. People now wear workout clothes as a part of daily fashion; leggings go with heels, and yoga pants are now common at work. The global market is beginning to attend to a different type of customer that focuses on a more modern lifestyle. This combination of sports and fashion is becoming more than a trend and represents a change in cultural ideals. Therefore, it could be considered athleisure, a cross between leisure and athletics.