J.Crew, masters of modern officewear and popularizers of that blue gingham shirt everyone seems to own, just came out with its latest menswear collection: An activewear collab with New Balance. The partnership, which previously stuck to sneakers, seems like an earnest shot at making well-tailored, pared-down gym gear — a relief next to all the loud labeling from brands in the space.
“Activewear has come such a long way, but we saw that it was still missing a sophisticated aspect,” J.Crew Menswear Director Frank Muytjens says. “I think ours is definitely a more quiet line than what’s usually seen… in activewear.”
The line still has plenty of athleisure elements — tailored sweatpants, coach jackets, et comfy al — but made with a mix of compression materials and sweat-wicking, tech-y fabrics like stretchy, tear-resistant Ripstop, and New Balance’s Flex Premium stretch fabric. “[New Balance] brings the resources, technology, and expertise for our first foray into activewear,” Muytjens says.
The new gear is a little out of place next to J.Crew’s straight-laced, tweed ‘n’ wool, trustworthy-boyfriend aesthetic. But for anyone who wants well-tailored gymwear and doesn’t want to be a walking billboard to get it, the new line belongs in your locker this spring.
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