by Outdoor Voices
By this point, discerning Valet. readers know that much of menswear is fundamentally predicated on the marriage of form and function. A rising brand that's keenly attuned to this principle is Outdoor Voices. The New York-based label was started by Tyler Haney and Matt McIntyre, who found themselves crossing paths more often at the gym than in design classes at Parson's. Apart from kettle bells, squats and lunges, they discovered a mutual interest in style and recognized an opportunity to push the boundaries of traditional activewear through a combination of urban aesthetics, modern design and technical fabrics. We caught up with Haney to discuss the role of sweatpants in everyday wear and the advantages of futuristic fabrics.
Function has always played a foundational role in menswear. Ticket pockets, army jackets and drivers are all derivatives of items that were originally created for utilitarian purposes. It's not too surprising that activewear—with its technical and functional origins—would also venture into fashion. The reason why it's happening now has a lot to do with a surge of active lifestyles, I think. The more we've transitioned to a service economy, the more people have sought active outlets. Certain circles want to express that on a daily basis and we dig it.
The "Running Man" sweats are created with a dual purpose in mind. They need to be technical enough to hold up on a 10 mile training run and yet comfortable and casual enough to wear to a coffee shop or just lounging around your place. Supplex is ideal for both as it's incredibly comfortable and durable.
Our products sit at the crossroads of high design principles and technically advanced fabrics. The sweats have a trim and tapered fit, helping us achieve a downtown aesthetic while maintaining its core performance purpose through a breathable, four-way stretch material. The taper also allows you to adjust the length of the pants up and down your calf, depending on your activity. We chose flat seam construction and cording for comfort and to minimize bulkiness. We've also engineered a secret pocket built into the front right pocket that keeps your phone, keys, etc. close to your body.