Size Inclusive Athleisure

Experience Explained:

In light of the Athleisure market growing rapidly, many brands (both established and startups) have been able to benefit from the popularity of the shift in consumer behavior. More women of all shapes and sizes have found themselves wanting to make purchases of new athleisure apparel whether it be related to the purpose of having new clothes to workout in, wear when running errands, or anything else that requires a level of comfort. 

From a personal perspective, there is something I just love about a having a matching workout set (or just new workout clothes in general). Having a put together look always gives me an extra boost of confidence and focus when I am at the gym or making a quick run to Whole Foods!

Unfortunately, not every woman has this experience due to them finding that what they may have their eye on is unavailable in their size. For someone who may just be starting on their health/fitness journey or may just be going through some changes in their body, this can become discouraging and cause them to want to shop elsewhere.

Take a look at what I came across when an Instagram announcement of a new collection for a popular athleisure brand was announced below:

My Reaction

I understand both the potential customer's pain point and the brand's problem that they eventually have to solve if they don't want to continue disappointing an important segment of their customers. Due to me not having full insight into the brand's process taken when creating and producing collections, I can only make a surface level suggestion.

In light of that, I am sure they are in the process of testing different fabrics and design techniques so they can serve the entirety of their diverse customer base.

HEAL Collection

If the opportunity presented itself, I would love to collaborate with an athletic brand on a capsule collection. Keeping my daily routine and habits in mind, I would want to create something where pieces be paired differently but still feel cohesive as a collection from a visual standpoint. Whether it's going to a yoga class, strength training, taking a dog on a walk in the neighborhood, or going to lunch with a friend, the collection would be created to be worn in various environments by various women of various shapes and sizes.

View my process below!

Moodboard + Inspiration

With the word HEAL in mind, I wanted to keep the inspiration of my approach as simple as possible. Typically people wear athleisure clothing for comfort but also for a sense of calm. When I thought of the meaning of the word, the greenest aspects of nature were the images that popped up in my head. The acronym of HEAL can mean something different for every woman that would wear this collection but for me HEAL stands for: Happiness, Excitement, Aspire, and Love. A lot of the time when we are in nature away from all the many aspects of life, we can find our own understanding of what it means to heal.

Process

Before starting to design, I initially needed to come to a conclusion of how many pieces I wanted to create so that it would be clear what path I chose to take. Along with choosing the amount of pieces, I also researched the different types of fabrics/materials that could be used for majority of the garments which included organic cotton, recycled polyester, elastane, etc. If it were up to me I would try to find the most sustainable options that not only would feel great on the customer but will also be great for the planet.

As an added source of inspiration, I of course had to take a look at some of my favorite athleisure brands to get an idea of what caught my eye!

Final Pieces

Bras

(1-2) Low Support Bra, (3-4) Medium Support Bra, (5-6) High Support Bra

Tops

(1-2) Flow Tee, (3-4) Compression Tee, (5-6) Cropped Long Sleeve, (7-8) Tank 

Bottoms

(1-2) Low Rise Legging, (3-4) High-Waist Legging, (5-6) Running Short,

(7-8) Biker Short, (9-10) Sweat Pant, (11-12) Flare Pant

Outerwear + Bodysuits

(1-2) Light Vest, (3-4) Hoodie, (5-6) Zip Jacket, 

(7-8) Long Bodysuit, (9-10) Short Bodysuit 

Some Looks on Different Women

Reflection

I will be totally honest, this was a very challenging project for me because it was my first time doing this amount of pieces from a cohesive stand point. Having a limited color palette, theme, and type of clothing forced me to stretch my creativity and at times the process became a bit uncomfortable (in a good way). The most important aspect of this experience was the learning and knowledge gained during each hour spent brainstorming, drawing, and allowing myself to stay inspired. I look forward to having another opportunity to create a small-mid sized collection and eventually having an opportunity actually going through the process of connecting with a set of apparel developers & manufacturers to bring visions like this to life.

In all that I do, I always want to be sure I'm being genuine about my approach to diversity and inclusivity when it comes to the creation of anything and this is what the purpose of this project helped me with!