Imagine with me for a moment that the future of collegiate sports gear for women was immersed in a world of over-the-top gorgeous designer brands. What would that look like? How would that change the face of women’s collegiate apparel? Let’s jump into the time machine today and project what that very well could look like one day.
A little sportswear history
When fashion design began introducing sportswear back in the 20’s, apparel enthusiasts deemed it America’s best contribution to fashion design thus far. As women started living more active lives, they wanted apparel that fit their needs and desires. Way back then the idea of women wearing anything other than a dress was rare, so when blouses, shorts, skirts, and shirts came onto the scene, many women fell in love with the idea.
Since then, women’s fashion has come a considerably long way. Today, more than 64% of women prefer to wear casual clothing, including sports apparel, than any other form of attire. When it comes to sports apparel, women are almost pushing down the doors to get their hands on collegiate and professional women’s sports apparel that is fashionable and fun.
Designers jumping in
There are a handful of notable women’s sportswear designers these days, but more and more are becoming interested in the niche. Today you can find designs from Derek Lam, Zac Posen, Mary Ping, and Behnaz Sarafpour, who have been included in the Sportswear section of the New York Fashion Now back in 2007. Monique Lhuillier has also jumped onto the scene with her formal gowns with sporty necklines and aerodynamic characteristics in the 2011 New York Fashion Week.
The recent London Olympics has inspired some fashion designers in London to try out some new looks, including Roksanda Ilincic, who happened to birth the fashionable look of the well-known sports hoodie worn with a skirt. In fact, Wendy Elsmore, Director of the London College of Style, stated “With a strong feel of athleticism in the air in the lead up to the London 2012 Olympics, fashion is having a fitness moment.”
Designers bring sexy into sportswear
Think about walking into Bloomingdales and spotting the ladies section marked “Designer Collegiate Apparel”. There you finger through dozens of over-the-top stylish and darling top-notch designers fashion apparel that is not only stylish, but sexy. You know the names: Donna Karen, Ralph Lauren, Donatella Versace, Gucci, Marc Jacobs, or Chanel just to name a few.
I don’t know about you, but I would love to get up on a Saturday morning and instead of throwing on my baggy sweats and tee, throw on a fleece sweat suit sporting the designer name “Gucci” and head off to spend a Saturday in casual, yet “stardom-worthy” style. No more feeling guilty about wearing the lounge clothes on the weekend, but sporting some cute sportswear as a fashion statement.
Women’s sport’s apparel increasing rapidly
Over the past five years, there has been a 148% increase in the production of sports apparel for women. This is waking up top designers to the notion that women want comfort and as we all know- women want style! Combine the two and there is a market of hungry consumers ready and willing to fork out the big bucks to sport their favorite top designers.
Who knows what the future collegiate sports apparel scene will hold, but one thing is for sure: Top designers will jump on board one at a time to get in the game. In fact, researchers are already thinking up new fabrics, designs, cuts, and textures for new sporty clothing lines for women. It will be interesting and fun to see how the market unfolds year by year for sure!