Athleisure – When Did Fashion Die?

“Athleisure – When Did Fashion Die?” is the latest editorial by Ben Everden exclusively for Defuze magazine

Athleisure – When did we give up on being fashionable and when did fashion die?
In the ever-evolving world of sportswear, we find ourselves navigating a labyrinth of leggings, sneakers, and performance fabrics. Yet, let’s take a moment to rewind to an era when the term “athleisure” wasn’t tossed around, and Princess Diana adorned sportswear with the finesse of a fashion marathon.
Picture this: Princess Diana, effortlessly gliding into the fitness realm with an athletic ensemble that could rival any runway. Her sportswear wasn’t just about sweat and stretch; it was a sartorial showcase of how comfort could seamlessly intertwine with grace. Bike shorts, oversized sweatshirts, and a dash of royal flair – a concoction that made even the most challenging workout look like a leisurely stroll through Buckingham Palace gardens.
Fast forward, and we’re thrust into the vortex of contemporary sportswear. While Diana danced between sophistication and comfort, the current sportswear aficionado appears to have embraced a more chaotic fusion of performance fabrics, neon accents, and questionable style decisions. Leggings, once a humble ally in Princess Diana’s sportswear repertoire, now morph into a kaleidoscope of patterns and hues. The notion of a classic monochromatic legging seems almost quaint, replaced by a symphony of colors and prints that might be more suited for an avant-garde art exhibition than a jog in the park.
Consider the humble sneaker – once a symbol of functional simplicity, now transformed into a high-stakes game of limited edition releases and flashy collaborations. Princess Diana’s sneakers gracefully propelled her through workouts; today’s options often appear as if they’re auditioning for a sci-fi movie set rather than a morning run. And then, the headbands – once a crown of athletic prowess, now sometimes relegated to the status of an afterthought. Princess Diana’s headbands were a testament to regal restraint; today’s versions may boast elaborate designs and high-tech features, yet somehow miss the mark when it comes to capturing the essence of timeless elegance.
As we traverse the ever-expanding landscape of modern sportswear, one wonders: have we sprinted past the finish line of fashion sensibility? Can we truly say that the evolution of sportswear has enhanced our style game, or have we stumbled into a kaleidoscopic maze of trends? Only time will reveal whether the race for athletic excellence and sartorial supremacy can indeed share the same podium. Game on, or should we say, Fashion Marathon engaged?
Original Concept & Styling: Josie Olivia
Hair and Makeup: Michelle Dubé
Production: Sofia Dunin
Model: Gracie Rae  from Chadwick Models
Words and Photography: Ben Everden
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