How Important Is The Athleisure Trend For Spring 2016?

Chris Gallagher
President & CEO, Vionic Group

“Today, active-inspired footwear is our second-largest category behind sandals. [Women] wearing active gear in a casual environment is [a trend that’s] in full force. We’ve also noticed the shifting attitudes of baby boomers as they work to stay active and healthy. An increasing number of gyms are tailoring age-appropriate workouts, and many people are taking ‘fitcations’ — vacations based on fitness. In response, the idea of post-workout recovery [looks] is something we’re exploring, with active sandals that go to and from activities and can even be worn during a workout.”

Jan Brinkmann
President, Tamaris USA

“The athleisure trend will gain momentum this season. Besides the smart functional items and casual lifestyle this footwear represents, it’s also a fashion statement. [Luckily, in our category], many features developed for athletics can be used as comfort-enhancing elements, such as flexibility, breathability and shock absorption. Some of our sneakers incorporate real yoga mat insoles, so the wearer gets instant gratification.”

Tamaris Sneakers Spring 2016
A Tamaris sneaker style for spring ’16.
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand.

Katie Moore
Lead footwear designer, Dr. Scholl’s

“The athleisure trend is going to continue to gain traction as consumers embrace a healthier lifestyle. And everyday comfort is not something that’s going away — even our casual shoes take cues from performance technology. In our sport series, for instance, the Atlas, [a sporty Mary Jane], is influenced by activewear, with stretch uppers and stitch detail. Overall, our constructions are more built up, with cushioning in mind.”

Felix Zahan
Product director, Ecco Americas

“Active lifestyle is a growing global consumer trend. We’re [addressing it] with yoga/athletic-inspired looks — products with a feminine touch done in modern materials that work with [activewear]. And this spring, we’re launching Ecco Intrinsic, representing the active-lifestyle sneaker trend, but designed to be edgier to appeal to a younger consumer. Our [performance] athletic footwear is built for a workout. However, many consumers wear it when walking or traveling because of the comfort [features].”

Ecco Sneakers Spring 2016
An Ecco sneaker style from spring ’16.
CREDIT: Courtesy of brand.

Christine Bender
SVP of marketing, Easy Spirit

“Athleisure is about looking good while feeling comfortable. Everyone is striving to live a healthier, more active life, so footwear must become increasingly versatile and less formal. For spring ’16, we’ve created shoes to keep up with [our active customer]. We have a metallic ballet flat with a sneaker-inspired sole that looks chic when paired with leggings or a shift-style dress.”

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