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How Sportswear Went from CHAV to CHIC

Sportswear is something usually associated with sports (duh) and has been the uniform of choice for Chavs over the past decade, but sportswear has this year become a huge fashion favourite under the guise of “Sports Luxe”. You’d be mistaken for thinking that this is something for the 'Paul’s Boutique Crew', 

'But it’s a lot more than wearing a uni-colour velour tracksuit'

Sports Luxe is basically wearing expensive sportswear and in some cases the line between Chav and Chic is very small. But why and when did this all change?

It’s not so much the way you wear the garments, but moreso where you got the clothes from. Pulling off this Chic and stylish sportswear trend isn’t going to be easy in a pair of Adidas jogging bottoms and some Nike trainers. 

Designers are carefully mixing and matching pieces to give the whole look an edge and this hasn’t been more prevalent than in the 2014 catwalks with Zegna, Alexander Wang and Marni contributing to this style rise. If you’re wondering how it’s done, let’s take a look at some of the biggest styles and why they work.

Bomber Jackets 

Bomber jackets have been around for years and it's no surprise that they’re still in fashion, but not just for sports jocks anymore. These technical jackets can be offset by several other features and are accessible all season, which makes them not only comfortable and stylish, but malleable as well. 

Incorporating a jumper underneath for winter and a denim shirt for summer gives the whole look an effortless but edgy feel. Partner either season with a pair of slim jeans or suit trousers and you’ve got it made.


Be it cotton or a mixed plastic fibre, sweatpants have been massive since MC Hammer preached that we couldn’t touch this. Slim joggers are on the rise, you can’t go five minutes without seeing a pair on the street of London's stylish boroughs. 

The reason Running Pants are so big is because of their “stay-at-home” feel, i.e you get home from work and throw on a pair of “comfies” and you’re done for the evening. Wearing a pair out without looking like a Chav is a worthy challenge for anyone, so here’s the down-low. 

Matching a pair of joggers with a sharp coat, jacket or even a blazer will offset the confusion. Team alongside some boots or high top trainers to allow the whole look to flow from top to bottom. Just remember Joggers naturally slouch so you shouldn’t.

Alexander Wang x H&M
Alexander Wang x H&M


Paris and London is the best for this trend but not in a negative way. If you’ve ever been out within the young creative areas of either of these stylish cities, you'll know that young fashionistas sometimes mix a fantastic outfit with bright sports trainers. 

Fashion trainers are on the rise and it’s the eclectic mix of each brand’s use of styles and fabrics that are making them huge. The wide array of styles makes for a unique pair of foot candy, with an added benefit that they go with almost everything - just make sure they match your outfit colour slightly. There is an element of irony in having an off-colour in your outfit, but if it’s too strong you’re going to look a bit silly.

So, if you’re thinking of taking up this current trend don’t forget that you can easily overdo it. Change up your outfit often, otherwise rather than looking like a fashion choice, it’ll start to seem like you don’t have a change of clothes. 

As a rule of thumb, only wear one part casual and match it with a sharper piece such as a blazer or slim fit smart trousers. You won’t be the only one out there wearing this gear, so make sure you look more Chic and less Chav.


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