How sportswear became fashionable

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Sportswear is no longer just for sports. The intersection between high fashion and sportswear has become more evident over the last few years. It made its way from the urban communities into a way bigger audience. But how did this specific phenomenon take place?

Fashion historically held on to the theory of the ‘trickle down’ effect. This trickle down movement is based on a hierarchical society, with the ‘upper class’ striving for distinction and people wanting to identify with those at the top of the social ladder. But in our current society this is no longer the case. The innovation of sportswear is initiated from the streets, and found its way into the minds of those running big fashion houses. Thus the movement doesn’t take place from the top down, but from the bottom up.

This isn’t new, but something we’ve seen happening more and more over the last decade. The looks on the street have become a great source of inspiration for luxury fashion houses like Versace and Balenciaga.

But that doesn’t explain the uprising of retro sportsbrands like Champion and Kappa, which are now much more present in the streetwear looks we see. This is mostly caused by social media, with celebrity’s like Kylie Jenner sharing their sporty looks on Instagram. In this case we actually do see the effect of fashion trickling down. Celebrity’s are often great influencers when it comes to the fashion industry. And with our fashion icons showing us that wearing a track suit out on the streets can be completely fashionable, why wouldn’t we do it too?