Fashion Meets Sport

– By Thomas Dai –

Olivia Palermo rocks sneakers with a fresh outfit in NYC!

Fashion and Sports may be two of America’s favorite pastimes, but it’s rare that the two find common ground to stand upon. Superbowl parties aren’t exactly what you pull out the couture for, despite how perfectly your color blocked Pierre Hardy wedges match your home team colors! Yet, the two do seem to have an uncanny liking for each other, both on a physical level (think Tom Brady and Gisele) and on the more abstract level of runway trends and fashion fads. Indeed, the look of international brands like Nautica and Lacoste were heavily influenced by sports back in the day, and even now, brands such as Y-3 build their businesses upon this unlikely synergy between high fashion and sports.

Sporty chic seems particularly relevant right now as several designers both old and young have honed in on athletic inspired designs in their recent Resort and Spring collections. From the surf inspired Neoprene dresses at Michael Kors to the runner-approved windbreakers and luxe jogging shorts at Alexander Wang, designers are getting into a particularly sporty mood for the coming year. While these looks tend to evoke the sun kissed skin and fresh-from-the-gym glow of warmer times, you can get in on this trend early. Just follow our three step theory on how to pull off a high fashion, sport influenced look.

Rag & Bone

Don’t be too obvious:
As much as it hurts, hold back on wearing your college boyfriend’s old basketball jersey as an impromptu evening dress. Sporty may be in, but it works best in subtle doses. Invest in a graphic sweater reminiscent of old school ski outfits (we love this one by Rag and Bone) or a well cut vest with discreet mesh paneling evocative of a fencer’s mask. Leave the sports uniforms to the actual athletes.

Play with Contrasts:
Fashion is all about juxtapositions: hard & soft, young & old, dark & light. Embrace your own fashion dichotomy by pairing sporty pieces with more dressy staples. Olivia rocks her Lanvin sneakers with skinny jeans and a tailored jacket for a fun, irreverent take on sporty fashion. Push the envelope even further by pairing towering heels with a slim pair of designer sweats cuffed at the ankle, or tucking a slouchy tank emblazoned with your favorite team’s name into cropped pants.

Keep your Focus:
With such a bewildering array of choices (Sneakers! Neoprene! Anoraks!) it’s oftentimes difficult to separate the stylish from the gimmicky. With sport-inspired looks, less is really more. Buy just a few quality separates that can transition well into everyday life–for instance a borrowed-from-the-boys varsity jacket or a chic (and warm) parka and avoid pieces you know will just sit in your closet collecting dust. Neon banded Scuba dresses may be hot right now, but in a few seasons, not so much.

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