EXCLUSIVE. Yes, that body sculpting, moisture wicking V-neck T-shirt makes your chest look good. But it's workout gear. This stuff isn't designed to work as normal clothing. And yet, after what feels like 100 years of intermittent solitude, workout clothing, by sheer token of its unparalleled comfort, is seeping into everyday life. If you thought Heathrow Terminal 2 had a lax border during a global pandemic, just try your local Gymbox. Just when we'd seen one too many Under Armours down the pub however, Mr Porter has released the sort of workout gear that actually wears everywhere else.
As a collaboration with LA zenwear fitness brand District Vision, the 11 piece line-up chimes with the outfit's "mindful approach to running" mantra. Think less doing it for the thirst trap selfie, more doing it for the therapeutic benefits to your head. The range also sits within Mr Porter's wider Health In Mind initiative, a campaign that publicises the benefits of mental wellness through movement and performance. The retailer has also committed to a donation of net profits from the sale of the collection to men's mental health charities.
Which is pretty thoughtful stuff. But the District Vision collab also steps to the fore thanks to really thoughtful design. Key pieces lend from the big Nineties sportswear pot, but it doesn't look like the bog standard gains gains gains performancewear of influencers that shill teeth whitening gels. Training T-shirts are block coloured, and easily paired with shorts for the weekend, while jersey sweatshirts are relaxed, boxy and built with thumbholes to keep sleeves in place. The five panel baseball cap could be niche A24 merch. The gym shorts can work for a long run, and a dip in the pool, and the mandatory afternoon stroll to a tiny, delicious, unfriendly boulangerie on your summer holiday. These days, all good summer shorts need to be a jack of all trades.
A sustainable element comes in the shape of a sunflower yellow hoody that'll be released later this month. Custom made in LA, it's fabricated in a recycled cotton that's part of the Better Cotton Initiative: an organisation that prioritises soil health, a clean water supply and biodiversity safeguarding.
Most importantly though, the collab works because it's focusing on the right reasons for working out. Of the collection, District Vision's founder Max Vallot said: "We're seeing record numbers of anxiety, depression and addiction in much of the developed world. Many of our friends and relatives have been struggling throughout the pandemic, so the Mr Porter Health In Mind initiative is incredibly close to our hearts... Everything we do at District Vision serves this purpose, so we are immensely grateful for the opportunity to bring our tools to a wider audience to benefit an important and timely cause."
Nice work indeed.
Available from mrporter.com now, prices starting from £65 to £280
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