I was lucky enough to sit down and pick the co-founder of Stylerunner.com, Julie Stevanja’s brains on all this fitness fashion! This, ladies, is a must read! Who doesn’t want to look and feel fabulous whilst being active?
Do you feel there has been a shift in fitness clothing? eg. bright patterns as opposed to the conventional black tights
Absolutely I think there has been a shift. Activewear has become much more fashion-forward and our Stylerunner customers especially, want to look and feel good opposed to just wearing black and sinking into the background. Brands are starting to take a more fashionable approach to both the fabrics and the styles so you can expect to see a lot of mesh, detailing and bright prints in upcoming seasons.
Is this changing the perspective on fitness and health?
I think health and fitness is a constant, it doesn’t really go through peaks and lulls but in today’s society where people are working longer hours and illness seems to be more and more rife, people are starting to take a more active approach to health, wellness and overall fitness.
Is fashionable fitness clothing changing the dynamics in gyms and studios globally?
I think the purpose of a gym or a studio is fundamentally to work out and to feel healthy – I don’t think this has changed rather that the consumers choose to dress more fashionably because it inspires them to work harder. My twin sister and cofounder at Stylerunner, Sali, are of the belief that clothes can change your entire outlook and if you look and feel good, you’re more motivated to work harder. I think the only dynamic that has changed is that people are more inspired and motivated.
Have you seen a rise or change in particular areas of fitness? eg. yoga, running, general fitness, crossfit etc
The two highest searched categories on Stylerunner are Yoga and Running – however, I think this is because often these categories are the most accessible. Time poor customers can fit in quick sessions a lot easier than they can make time for a class or gym session – and also, a lot of these garments can be worn in every day wardrobes as well.
What do you foresee happening in the broad fitness/movement industry in clothing?
As the buyer for Stylerunner, I am privy to what trends are coming up and I think we will start to see far more dual-purpose pieces. Working out shouldn’t mean compromising function for style or vice versa.
What brand is the next big thing?
We’re loving VPL from New York, its high contrast, bold and daring looks are perfect for the girl that wants to stand out.
What are women demanding? i.e., comfort/ support/ fashion
I think it’s a mix of performance and style. One of our best selling brands, Body Science, is best known as a sports performance brand delivering compression wear, however they recently added mesh to a couple of key pieces and created a fusion between the two. Our customers are very vocal about what they want and what they like. They want activewear that makes a statement; bright prints by The Upside sell well as do our boutique brands like Tully Lou, Saucha and L’urv.
When did sport become so fashionable and trendy?
I don’t necessarily think sport has become fashionable and trendy but the clothes in which we wear to work out definitely has. I think that just comes down to customer demand and the progression of fashion across all categories.
Do you think funky, fashionable fitness clothing inspires and motivates people to…move?
100%. We always say that wearing something you feel comfortable and confident in, increases productivity. Whether that’s to work or for working out, it makes a huge difference – our job is ensuring we have a premium curated collection to service this need.
Julie Stevanja, Co-founder, Stylerunner
If you want to hear more from Julie about her business, StyleRunner, check out OnlineRetailer.com. She will be speaking there! I definitely won’t be missing this.