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reflected these trends too. According to John Lewis’ Shop Live Look report,
sales of loungewear and leggings rose by 1,303% in the 12 months to December
2020. And in early 2021, True Fit’s Fashion Genome (via Direct Commerce), which
analyses data from 17,000 brands, confirmed that athleisure orders had leaped
up by 84% since the start of the pandemic.
In addition, London
Fashion Week 2021 demonstrated that our enthusiasm for comfort hasn’t gone
unnoticed by the world’s top designers. The virtual catwalk (LFW 2021 was a
physical and digital hybrid) included crinkle-covered jumpers, oversized
knitwear and easy-wearing sportswear - all with the unique and dramatic
embellishments you’d expect from haute couture.
If you think our
whirlwind romance with comfort will come to an abrupt end now that offices have
reopened and we can socialise with friends and family again, think again. After
almost two years of elasticated waistbands, cosy slippers and garments that let
you move freely, why would anyone want to go back to feeling restricted or
uncomfortable in their clothes? Indeed, a Style Forecast report for 2022 by
Stitch Fix revealed that almost one third of people would prefer to take a 10%
pay cut than dress up for work every day. These attitudes are believed to be
contributing to the rise of ‘business comfort’ and ‘versatile athleisure’
In addition, in the
chaos and turmoil of the last couple of years, the importance of self-care,
wellness and mindfulness was brought to the forefront of the public’s mind. And
these concepts look to be here to stay, with a survey by Champneys in late 2021
revealing that 30% of people invest more time in self-care than they did before
the pandemic. We believe that these phenomena go hand in hand with prioritising
comfort when dressing. Gone are the days when you had to suffer to be
But what about
looking good? Has that gone out the window too? While some of us may have
neglected our appearance at times during the course of the pandemic, we don’t
believe that people have stopped caring about style altogether.
According to The
State of Fashion 2022 report by The Business
of Fashion and McKinsey, consumers will reboot their wardrobes this year to
feed their appetite for newness and keep up with their newfound social
freedoms. The report predicts that the intense demand for loungewear and
athletic wear will slow down slightly as consumers reallocate their fashion
budget to add the likes of formalwear, occasion dresses and high heels back
into the mix.
With this in mind, we predict that shoppers
will expect a greater balance between comfort and style. While the future may
not be ‘Sweatpants Forever’, as a headline by The New York Times in August 2020
suggested, the idea that you have to suffer to be beautiful is also redundant.
where we come in. Chums’ fashion offering has always walked a fine line between
style and comfort, with flattering cuts, colours and designs, value for money
materials and practical features such as discreet adjustable waistbands,
moisture-wicking fabric and attractive wide-fit shoes. We make the balance between
looking good and feeling good a priority.
As we enter the post-lockdown era, it seems the balance
between style and comfort has never been more important. We expect London
Fashion Week 2022 to showcase the best of both worlds - with comfortable pandemic
fashion features reinvigorated in stylish ensembles that will epitomise this
unique cultural moment and take us into a future that prizes balance.
it comes to the over 50s, we are hopeful that more clothing brands will wake up
to the fact that this generation shouldn’t have to compromise on style or
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