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Under Armour is about to start courting fashion-conscious shoppers in a much more tangible way than simply hiring Gisele Bündchen to star in a video campaign. As Business of Fashion first reported, the athletic brand has brought on the up-and-coming Belgian designer Tim Coppens as creative director of a new line called Under Armour Sportswear.
While many emerging designers take on design gigs for larger, more established players in the fashion industry — Dao-Yi Chow and Maxwell Osborne of Public School becoming the creative directors of DKNY, for instance, or Monse's Fernando Garcia and Laura Kim informally designing for Carolina Herrera — Coppens is actually a sensible match for a mainstream sportswear company. In a previous life, he worked at Adidas and Ralph Lauren's sports division, and his five-year-old brand is steeped in a sporty streetwear ethos. For spring 2016, Coppens's women's collection was filled with boxy tees, baggy pants, and loose, long shorts, appealingly paired with sneakers and structured or oversized jackets. You want to look like a cool, fashionable skater girl (or boy), you buy Tim Coppens.
It seems like the designer's work at Under Armour won't deviate very far from that. In a statement sent to Racked, the brand described Under Armour Sportswear "fashion-driven performance sportswear." Ben Pruess, Under Armour's senior vice president of sportswear, told BoF that the new line, launching this fall, is "not activewear" and "not athleisure." It's for the portion of the day you don't spend at the gym.
So here's the big question, at least in this reporter's view: will Under Armour Sportswear also cost less than the $375 required to nab a layered women's top from Tim Coppens? Fingers crossed.