Places Zürich

Sport Affair // Megan von Sport.LES im Interview*

18. September 2017
Sport.les start-up Zürich New York Athleisure

Von New Yorks Lower East Side nach Zürich

Megan hat beinahe 2 Jahren das Start up SPORT.LES  gegründet und damit einen wichtigen Beitrag zur Schweizer Yogaszene geleistet. Ihre persönlich ausgewählten Stücke, kannst du online im Store bestellen.

 

Please tell us a little bit more about SportLES. How did you come up with the idea?

After working in fashion and then transition to retail director at Physique 57 in New York during the beginning stages of the fitness fashion boom, we moved to Zurich for a job opportunity. After ordering my favorite brands with a high import cost and observing that they didn’t exists in the market, we made our move to start SPORT.LES in early 2016. We are very excited to be the first to bring the curated designers to Switzerland.

 

What is special about SPORT.LES?

The concepts comes from our years living in NYC, (SPORT. lower. east. side). We curate boutique fitness and leisure wear designers that is more about luxury on the go without looking so sporty.

What is the concept behind it?

The buzz word for the moment in the CH/EU is „athleisure“, but for us it is about a lifestyle – from studio, to streets, to dinner, to travel. Sportswear has never been this fashionable and accessible off the runway. The former mentality was wear yoga pants to class and change when you leave. Our concept is class followed by brunch in the same outfit (if you are not too sweaty). I have personally found denim to be very uncomfortable and gym wear to be inappropriate in occasions outside of daylight so it is all about transitional pieces. I remember when skinny jeans were the fad, buzzword, and have never gone away, that was 2003. The market analysis shows continuous growth in the US without slowing down, it will then power its way into the other markets.

How do you choose the brands or designers? How do you source them?

Some of the designers we know personally and have a great story with ethical practises in design and production. A majority I have been wearing starting in 2013. We have a few big labels, Alo Yoga being one, and some have been found on Instagram and loved the story and the designs. We want to continue to surprise our audience with new designers and designs not seen in the market. We are not chasing the trend, our goal is to maintain it and to be the go-to for Active Couture.

 

Are there any new brands coming up we should be watching out for? 

AW17 is bringing 5 new designers and will layer in every season. This fall we have BONVIRAGE, MONROW, LNDR, YEAR OF OURS
and one undisclosed.

 

You are without a doubt my favorite athleisure fashionista. But apart from the style factor, what should we look out for when buying our beloved yoga wear? 

After seeing and hearing the market for the past year and a half, we will be layering in more leisure and travel wear with plush fabrics and design details. Below is the fashion forecast in activewear for this AW17 and SS18. A SPORT.LES blog post will follow with examples:

Shredded Everything
Crop Top Bras
Harem Pants
Not-So-Basic Bralettes
High Waist Leggings paired with either a Cropped Top/Bra or a Tee/Tank tied in a knot at the waist. After class paired with a bomber or long cardigan
Moto Leggings
Stirrup Leggings
Joggers
Camouflage Print
Layered Cut-Out Performance Bra

I have also made some disappointing experiences with some of the boutique brands. In particular when it came to quality. What fabrics would you recommend to stay away from? 

There will always be quality issues, it is part of the industry.  There is a huge difference in quality at a high price point, the fabric selection and details in the design. If the designer has a background in the industry and knows the functionally of the fabrics and understands what stitch, methods of printing for the highest quality, then the execution will be elevated. There are a lot of brands popping up to be part of the „active movement“ without the background in textiles.  For us, it is important to test the brand before buying and looking into their background and story. I formally managed the design and production of activewear private label for fitness studios, so I can speak to the construction and fabric choices.
 

What are your plans for SportLES?

There a few on the table! Maybe a shop in Zurich, layering in men’s in 2018, EU expansion. But for AW17 we will be out in the market at multiple events and pop-up this season including FITxMORE (a new extension of ZUSPA) and our first year at Fashions Hotel.

Thank you so much, Megan. We can´t wait to see more of you and SPORT.LES.

Und nun kannst du gleich fröhlich drauflos shoppen mit dem Code „Yogaaffair10“.

Signatur Elvira Unterschrift

*in cooperation with Sport.Les

Fotos: Torsten Maas und Joseph Khakshouri

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