As athleisure becomes more and more trend driven, we’re seeing consistent spikes in the use of unexpected fabrics. Velvet continues to have a strong presence thanks to brands like Alala and now it looks like denim may be following suit.
No Ka ‘Oi is the first prominent athleisure brand to jump on denim by using the classic fabric in a new light. Though fitness clothing may seem like an odd use for denim, it’s worth remembering that before being turned into fashion material, the fabric initially gained popularity among factory workers, miners, farmers and cattlemen.
No Ka ‘Oi is part of Rilievi, an Italian group known for haute couture, handmade tailoring and embroidery. So No Ka ‘Oi is a fitting brand to give this RTW fabric a stylishly sporty makeover and, given that the brand is stocked around the globe at retailers like Oberpollinger in Munich and Harvey Nichols in London, it’s in a position to make denim a truly viable fabric in activewear globally.
The key to making denim work in fitness apparel, according to No Ka ‘Oi Creative Director Simona Finelli, is to integrate it into separates with Lycra so you’re still getting stretch and a form-flattering fit. “Denim offers a completely new and unconventional way to work out. It gives a timeless element and it’s versatile — you can wear it for a chic or sporty occasion.”
Finelli even goes so far as to recommend doubling up on your denim. “The style is denim on denim for creating a statement total look, but you can also wear a bra to match denim palazzo pants, wear denim leggings with an oversized sweater or opt for leggings with a cropped denim shirt.”
And no worries about shrinkage! Just make sure to machine wash at 30 degrees on a delicate setting and don’t tumble dry.