This week's featured outfit: technology meets sportswear for a conventional look that's anything but. As both design geek and novelty-seeking missile, I'm drawn to the quiet brilliance of reworked staple pieces. While cotton and wool on classic shapes certainly look great, a slew of materials science has made old-school materials more anachronism than utility. Now, thanks to some truly-innovative designers in the sportswear and outdoors industries, the silhouettes of the past meet the fabrics of the future in a brilliant, understated way. 

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Starting from the top, there's the jacket: this Arc'teryx Commuter Hardshell is modeled after the zip-up cotton Harrington jackets of yore, but a GORE-TEX construction (and movement-friendly design) takes the silhouette to a new plane of function. The gorgeous, neutral "Chalk Stone" shown here is from Arc'teryx 24's Spring 2015 collection. Even after a year of use and abuse, the jacket has held up beautifully.

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

For some under-shell insulation, I threw on the DYNE Heritage Mega Crew. Crafted from DYNE's water-resistant "Mega" spacer fabric, the whole package weighs less than half a pound yet keeps you toasty regardless of condition. Think down coat levels of warmth:weight, but without the "puffer" look. Then, there's that electric blue: fluorescent, hi-viz, straight from a Cosmonaut style guide. Package that all in a classic athletic sweatshirt silhouette, and this midlayer becomes borderline space age. 

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Rounding out this old-meets-new collection are the Nike Lunar Flyknit Chukkas. Lunar Flyknit Chukkas are a heritage desert boot silhouette, built from everything but: Flyknit, Lunar EVA foam, and high-tension Flywire collide to bring performance running features to a distinctly-casual shoe. Draped in this speckled blue/platinum colorway, the Lunar Flyknit Chukkas represent the best that Nike's lifestyle-focused Sportswear division has to offer.

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Arc'teryx / DYNE / Uniqlo / Uniqlo / Nike / The North Face (photo: Christina Oh)

Innovation doesn't always mean moonshots - often, true change comes from incremental updates rather than blue-sky daydreams. The Sweatshirt from Planet XCleared for liftoff.

 

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