Making your hay by staying on top of trends can be a tricky proposition.
Every time you feel you are on top of it, the rules change.
There was a time, not so long ago, that when women were at leisure, they wore casual clothes like sun dresses, blue Jeans, slacks or the like.
Now, more and more, women are staying in their athletic wear, not only when they are working out but even afterwards.
This new trend is spoken about at buzzfeed.com chronicling the thinking behind retail giant The Gap and why they formed the trend setting Athleta. “She is the woman from Athleta’s “Power to the She” slogan, the person the Gap-owned brand’s executives spend their workdays obsessing over. She isn’t any single individual, but an archetype of sorts: The five company leaders I speak with throughout the day, all women, constantly reference her, her habits, and her desires.
She is “fitness-minded” but not necessarily working out — she wants versatility, but she also wants to look good, brand president Nancy Green says.
She will also play a decisive role in the future of America’s largest specialty clothing retailer, which is racing to keep pace with a fast-changing market. Among the changes rocking Gap are a shift away from denim and toward yoga pants, tights, and other athletic gear — a shift that is particularly pronounced among teenagers. As sales slide at Gap’s core chain, the company hopes Athleta will become the fourth pillar of the company, alongside Banana Republic and Old Navy.”
Stated simply, it’s the trend of women accomplishing her daily routine in yoga pants and running tops before exercising, or perhaps without plans to exercise at all, and teenage girls wearing leggings to school.
According to a study by Yoga Journal, almost 9% of U.S. adults, or 20.4 million people, practiced yoga as of 2012, a 29% increase from 2008.
Of that group, 82% were women. The rise of studio fitness classes, from boutique spin classes to Pilates to Pure Barre, has been well-documented. And outside of the gym, more women are running — Running USA says 1.2 million women were running-event finishers in 1990, a number that has soared to 10.8 million as of 2013.
The Gap proudly speaks about its exciting brand. “We have been the premier fitness apparel brand exclusively for women since 1998.
As athletes ourselves, we live a life in motion. That’s why we design versatile and fashionable performance apparel for the gym, studio and everything in between.
A woman athlete is her most powerful self when she’s fully engaged in the moment – when she discovers her strength, her focus, her power. We design products that live up to the challenges those moments bring and make her look as amazing as she feels. We understand that fitness is her oxygen and, for her, the joy is always in the doing.
Power to the She.”
The informative information and business site northbaybusinessjournal.com shares in 2014, “The number of Athleta brick-and-mortar women’s activewear stores increased 85 percent in fiscal 2013 and drove store growth in North America for parent company Gap Inc. (NYSE: GPS), prompting the company on Thursday to call it a “breakout year” for the Petaluma-based brand.
Athleta opened 30 stores in fiscal 2013, ending the year with 65 stores in 25 states and the District of Columbia. Gap Inc. had 3,539 stores in 48 countries at fiscal year-end, 3,164 of which were company-operated.
Founded in 1998, Athleta was primarily a catalog and then e-commerce retailer until opening a pilot store in Mill Valley nearly four years ago. Gap acquired Petaluma-based Athleta in 2008 for $150 million.
In 2011, the division doubled the size of its Petaluma base of operations. At that time, the expectation of store openings was 50 by the end of last year.”
Now Athleta is trying to set the trend as they announced in a recent press release. “Athleta is pleased to announce its first ever designer collaboration in partnership with Derek Lam 10 Crosby to launch a lifestyle collection that transcends the gym for all day style.
With the rise of the athleisure trend and growth of the women’s active wear category, Athleta and Derek Lam 10 Crosby saw an opportunity to create a collection that incorporates Lam’s aesthetic of minimal designs and feminine sensibility with Athleta’s incredible performance fabrics and fitness expertise.
Launching in stores in September 2015, the brand collaboration will span the length of three delivery seasons encompassing Fall 2015, Winter 2015 and Spring 2016.
The first brand collaboration collection will feature Derek Lam 10 Crosby signature details including 2-in-1 styles and color blocking while incorporating a mixture of Athleta performance fabrics. The collection will include leggings, shorts, dresses, jackets, sweatshirts and custom designed sneakers. The collection will be sold online at www.athleta.com and select Athleta stores as well as the Derek Lam 10 Crosby boutique located in New York City’s Soho district.
Athleta has been the premier fitness apparel brand exclusively for women since 1998. With female athletes as its designers, Athleta creates versatile and fashionable performance and lifestyle apparel for the fitness-minded woman who lives life on the go. Offering products that move with her throughout the day, Athleta strives to help her look as amazing as she feels. Athleta offers apparel and gear for a range of activities from yoga and spin to strength training and run as well as seasonal sports, including ski and tennis. Athleta apparel is sold in retail stores across the country and online at www.athleta.com.”
So, our wonderful female submission wrestlers, have you become an Athleta girl without knowing it? Have you found yourself wearing athletic wear even when you are not working out? It’s comfortable, sexy and stylish.
In the 1960’s there was a popular trending expression that spoke to change that said “More Power To The People.”
In 2015, in a time of niche markets and ever changing trends in what women wear and when they wear them, the expression is “Power To The She.”
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Sources: brainyquote.com, Wikipedia, fciwomenswrestling2.com, FCI Elite Competitor, photos thank you Wikimedia Commons.