Have you ever asked yourself if activewear is for you? In case you’ve been waiting on the sidelines, watching the boom of skin-tight exercise-inspired outfits take over the catwalks, coffee shops and work its way into office attire, Jasper Conran might be your salvation. In his latest collection, Jasper tackles the trend with his usual eye-catching combination of feminine elegance and impactful play of contrasts. We end up with a sophisticated look in an domain which is likely a permanent shift in our wardrobes, not just a fad.
After years of sportswear just being sportswear, the past couple of years have led to a boom for stylish activewear for every situation. It’s been hard to miss, but how did we end up here? In part, we’ve had a fabric revolution, with new materials such as TENCEL and X-STATIC entering the market. But that’s only part of the picture. We’re more health-conscious than ever. According to a recent research, it’s the fastest growing sector of fashion and market-leaders report sales increases in double-digits annually.
The collection is absolutely packed with colour — lemon sherbet yellow, bubble-gum pink, royal blue, bright orange. As ever, Jasper is playing with class and contrasts, however his typical large-scale patterns take a backseat to put the colors and fabrics interplay in the spotlight. What’s still left an appealing balance between elegance and the ease of activewear, contrasting long and short cuts, sheer and utilitarian fabrics and feminine and gender-neutral pieces.
The colorful activewear activewear could also be seen from a financial perspective. Economist George Taylor was the first to find patterns between fashion trends and the economy, coining the “Hemline Theory” in the 1926. In brief, the theory and subsequent research show that we purchase more conservative fashion and “basics” in a recession, reasoning that we can use them for a longer time. We are more likely to purchase colorful and more embellished style when the economy is growing. Ergo, the collection testifies of an economic boom.
Innovate or die. Jasper Conran keeps expanding into new creative areas. Referred to as a godfather of the London Fashion Week, helping to establish it back in 1983, this collection keeps true to his core design statements. Son of textile-designer Sir Terence Conran, Jasper Conran designed his first womenswear collection in 1978, aged 19, for the iconic Henri Bendel store in New York, Since then, he has continued to expand the Conran dynasty to include interior decoration, photographic essays, eyeglasses, luggage and, in 2016, the hotel L’Hotel Marrakech in Morocco.
Is that a Jasper? will start to take on an even broader meaning. Still, it won’t be difficult to recognize the creatior’s new pieces. They’re integrated in his form language and expands his artististic expression into new domains which we should all look forward to explore together with Mr. Conran.
With it’s appeal spreading to a 24/7 active look, Jasper offers a really useful piece of the puzzle for those who have been looking for a way to wear this with a flair. ◆