The term ‘Sports-Luxe’ is one that crops up every Spring to denote those particular articles which look like high-end sporting attire. (I guess it’s pretty self-explanatory!) Each year, we see a cyclical regurgitation of similar pieces in floaty silk or jersey fabrics with typical sportswear motifs such as zips, drawstrings, and neon colour blocking. These garments can easily be categorised under the auspice of ‘Sports-Luxe’ because as a trend, it encompasses a wide spectrum-(ie. all of the aforementioned), whereas a trend such as ‘Florals’, is pretty specific. So of course the ‘Sports-Luxe’ trend is an easy one to reiterate year in year out, because there will always be pieces and/or collections which appear to fit said trend.
But the question is- is a trend such as ‘Sports-Luxe’, really a trend? And who decides this? It’s a trend in so much that the term has been coined, and countless articles have been produced which validate and document its existence. Which leads to the fact that it must be fashion journalists themselves who create the trends, rather than designers. It’s been accepted that designers establish the Zeitgeist, and while this may be true in a coincidental way- (I mean the spirit of each collection is determined by the season so inevitably, Autumn/Winter inspires a sombre or jewel-toned palette, while for Spring/Summer most likely the opposite is true.) Therefore, there will of course be a strong overlap.
I recently had the honour of listening to Susie Lau of Style Bubble at the London School of Economics, and she was keen to stress that there’s absolutely no corroboration between designers- it’s not like they hold some bi-annual meeting to decide upon ten trends that they should all allude to! So it’s always down to predictability and coincidence as to why there are several similarities present at each season. And these are all meticulously picked out by journalists compiling trend-reports. Or suddenly there will be an influx of celebrities wearing a trend, such as the oh-so-in peplum waist. Like anything, if you search long and hard, anyone can ‘discover’ a trend if there are seemingly enough outfits across several collections which vaguely fit the criteria.
Trends are great for guidance, and are are a practical and concise way of viewing the collections, but ultimately, they don’t really exist! So all the less reason to actually follow them, even though there are some societal demands that we should!
(Despite all this, a very specific shoe does seem to be trending- the ultra luxurious sports shoe, as seen at Isabel Marant, Chloé, and The Row, as illustrated below. They’ve now also been replicated by Topshop. Ok, so I admit that’s quite serious proof of a trend.)
This is my compilation of several pieces which create this season’s ‘Sports-Luxe’ trend:
L to R: Hand Weave printed silk-georgette top, Willow. Shari striped tulle and mesh top, Missoni. Wedge sneakers, Isabel Marant. Grey sneakers, The Row for Superga. Neon-striped mid-rise skinny jeans, Rag & Bone.
L to R: Enzyme racer-back silk tank, Alexander Wang. Silk satin-crepe straight-leg pants, 3.1 Phillip Lim. Nestore sleeveless top, Maxmara. Drawstring dress, Raoul. Pulsion satin-crepe shorts, Sandro.
L to R: Drawstring-waist dress, Vanessa Bruno Athe. Vieste silk bomber-jacket, Maxmara. Racer-back silk-crepe tank, 3.1 Phillip Lim. Suede and watersnake wedge boots, Chloé. Lensley shirt, Diane Von Furstenberg. Silk short dress, A.L.C.