The athleisure fashion trend, which has been coming on strong for the past several years, took off like a rocket during the pandemic with so many people working from home. Looking ahead to how companies will function post-pandemic, it’s predicted that workplace environments will be more laid-back and casual, as will the accepted attire for those returning to the office.
Not quite sure what athleisure wear is?
Well, athleisure as a fashion category is a hybrid of at-home leisure wear and gym workout clothes (also called activewear). It began to emerge as far back as the 1970s when aerobic exercise classes became popular. Workout clothes brands catering to fitness buffs have always offered extra comfort because they typically incorporate soft, stretchy, high-performance materials and fabrics with moisture-wicking, quick-drying properties. With continuing high tech advancements in athletic fabrics, is it any wonder that they were adapted to more traditional leisure clothing to produce the athleisure wear hybrid?
Athleisure’s popularity has been attributed to the fact that it is multi-functional, multi-seasonal, and above-all, comfortable clothing. And as our society has become more fitness-conscious and more laid-back, it’s no wonder athleisure wear is now viewed as a valid, fashion-forward wardrobe option for the workplace and beyond. In regard to athleisure as a trend for 2021, Vogue magazine predicts that “Supple lines and soft fabrics define the ultimate trend of 2021. One word: Comfort.”
Creating the Best Athleisure Wear Swag
The tee shirt has been the king of swag for decades because, if done right, a tee will be worn frequently, and every time it’s worn it’s advertising your company brand. So it stands to reason that the same would apply to other athleisure apparel as well, right? And the answer is, yes! Still, the big question remains—how to do it right. Otherwise you might as well toss your money into the company shredder.
Here are some basic features of conference swag apparel that will actually get worn:
- Quality fabric that’s soft and comfortable from day one.
- Quality fabric and workmanship that maintain their good looks over the long haul.
- Customizing that is well-executed based on your company’s branding and the item. Some companies will benefit from bold designs. For others the elegant simplicity of a tone-on-tone embroidery might be the best choice.
- Clothing brands committed to sustainability and best practices are very important and will reflect positively on your brand.
A sure-fire way to create the best athleisure brands swag is to use a company like Gemnote who offers top-quality, in-demand athleisure brands, a variety of customizing options, plus services like kitting, warehousing, and more. Not only will Gemnote do the heavy lifting for your conference swag project (leaving you more time to focus on other aspects of your conference) but their expertise can ensure that your conference swag is an investment that pays off.
Top 10 Athleisure Wear Swag Ideas for Conferences
When it comes to affordable swag, you can’t beat the classic tee shirt. It provides a walking billboard for your brand message if done right. The key is creating a tee that gets worn. To do that, you will need to invest, first and foremost, in a quality brand that fits well, feels great, and has the durability to keep its good looks wear after wear. Look for top brands like Madewell, Champion, Marine Layer, and Hanes Comfort Colors that are known for comfort, quality and commitment to sustainability.
Elevate your brand a bit with a polo instead of a tee for your athleisure business conference swag. Tennis and golf style apparel is very on-trend at the moment and a polo shirt makes a great layering item for any wardrobe. It’s a great choice for athleisure swag for work. With a shirt that sports the brand logo as seen above, you can get creative with placement of your company’s logo by embroidering it on the sleeve on the shirt’s hem.
Whether pullover or zip-front, the hoodie is an outerwear staple for everyday that appeals to everyone. It gets thrown on for trips to the gym, the market, a walk around the neighborhood, or just hanging out. Layered with the right pieces, it works for the office too.
According to Vogue magazine, “Because 2020 marked a return to basics and a desire to have a more comfortable wardrobe, athleisure is shaping up to be the ultimate trend of the next 12 months, with the tracksuit at its center.” An investment in luxury athleisure swag items like a top brand tracksuit is a great way to spoil and impress your company execs and VIPS.
A slimmed-down, elevated version of sweatpants, the jogger pant is now a fashion category unto itself. When crafted of a more structured (but still comfy) athleisure fabric, it’s being marketed as appropriate office wear when paired with more workplace-traditional items.
When considering athleisure tops and swag items, we love classic tanks. Because they are de facto apparel for the gym, and a perfect layering piece for every wardrobe, tanks are a highly desirable budget-friendly option for athleisure mens swag or athleisure women swag.
7. Hi-Tech Fabrics
A large part of the appeal of athleisure and athletic wear brands swag has to do with the tech behind the fabrics that makes the clothing extra comfortable because they are more breathable, lightweight, rapid-drying, anti-microbial, wrinkle-resistant, moisture-wicking, or even UV-repelling. Such features add value to any athleisure swag and is appreciated whether it’s worn for working in the office or working out in the gym.
8. Ball Caps
Ball caps are classic athleisure wear whose popularity never seems to wane. These “gimme cap” giveaways are included on most lists of athleisure swag ideas because they are cost-effective and everybody loves a free cap. If the recipient doesn't wear the cap, they’ll usually pass them on to someone else. And do you really care who’s wearing it as long as your branding is being seen?
9. Home Shoes
Okay, we also know them as house slippers or just slippers, but they’ve been elevated in the fashion world thanks to a change of name and modern unisex styling! Whatever we call them, cushy slip-on home shoes are sure to be appreciated by anyone working from home or chilling out at home after a long day on the job. As athleisure swag bag ideas go, these unisex accessories are a great option.
Socks are a terrific, budget-friendly option for athleisure conference swag bags. Their popularity has increased in recent times since, no doubt, they are often the footwear of choice for those working from home! Choosing an eco-friendly brand that gives back increases their cachet.
Ready to stock up on athleisure conferences swag items?
Gemnote is your source for sustainable top athleisure brands plus expert customizing. We can work with any budget to create memorable athleisure swag for conferences that will prove to be a solid investment in building your brand. Plus, we can take a lot of the work involved in any swag project off your plate and free you up to manage other aspects of your conference.