Are the Olympics all you can think of? Embrace athleisure, and let your fashion reflect your mood. Designer Kunal Rawal’s guide to getting it right, with minimum fuss.
Just when we thought athleisure as a trend was passé, it’s back and how. Thanks to the Olympic fever that has gripped the world, pairing active wear with day wear or evening wear is still in vogue. This just goes to prove how cyclical fashion is — what was once in style, will be in style again.
Personally, I’m on board with the trend. Whether its head-to-toe active wear, or just sneakers with your suit, there are varied degrees of wearing this. Besides, I have to give credit to the comfort this trend brings.
Thanks to young companies and start-ups, athleisure is now also acceptable office wear to some extent. It’s a thin line though, so best keep it minimal. The easiest way is to pair your look with clean sneakers in solid colours. I recommend Nike Airmax and Air Jordans — they are coveted because of their utility value, and they go well with all kinds of outfits.
Also, you end up walking a little more when your feet are more comfortable. Also, if you thought this look only worked for the day, you’ll be surprised how good sneakers can look with your sharp three-piece suits. Shahid Kapoor and Farhan Akhtar absolutely rocked that look at IIFA this year.
A pair of well-fitted cuffed joggers with your dress shirt and jacket looks good too, but make sure to keep your colours tonal. Also, really baggy joggers only make you look big, so make sure you don’t go too loose when going for a drop-crotch look. This works very well for frequent travellers like me who fortunately don’t need to dress formally when travelling.
For frequent fliers who are from the business and corporate world and don’t have that luxury, sports jackets/blazers are becoming the first choice — the look of a formal blazer with the feel and comfort of a high performance fabric (like neprene and spandex) is what makes it such a success. Pair it with a shirt and chinos for a semi-formal look or a solid tee, tracks and sneakers, for a more casual one. Even a sports blouson or a sweatshirt with badges, slogans or a print, is a good addition. Moreover, as a silhouette, it flatters almost everybody.
Caps work very well in the monsoon, keeping your head dry and cool, and add a sporty touch to any look — day, evening, night, late night. Of late, sports watches and fitness trackers have become the ‘it’ accessory, conveniently adding a pop of colour to your outfit. Sporty glasses, like Oakley, also help.
There’s so much you can do with athleisure. There are no real rules and you can mix and match from pieces you already own. I wear it, my friends wear it, and I don’t see it going anywhere for quite some time… till it does, and comes back again.
Rawal is a leading men’s fashion designer. He tweets as @kunalrawalvibe