Varsity jackets are fashion's latest love-in

These retro-inspired varsity jackets are everywhere on the streets of Copenhagen Fashion Week

Track is back! Sportswear staples are having a rebrand on the streets of Copenhagen courtesy of the fashion set, but it’s the once-humble varsity jacket that’s the star of the show.

If there’s any fashion city known for its sartorial sensibility, it’s Copenhagen – home of some of fashion’s most dizzyingly sought-after and in-demand stars. Home to Ganni, Cecilie Bahnsen, Saks Potts and Bernadette, among a clutch of other glittering fashion favourites, there’s no city more attuned to dressing well for the weather. 

And now, if their previous track record is anything to go by, they’re predicting what will, no doubt, snowball to become next year’s biggest fashion flirtation: achingly retro-inspired, oversized varsity jackets. The sort that are a wardrobe staple among the jocks that feature in a particular breed of olde 80s American romcoms.

Varsity jackets are fashion's latest love-in
Varsity jackets are fashion's latest love-in

Their popularity on the streets of Copenhagen Fashion Week is no surprise. Since the start of July, shopping platform Lyst has noticed a 13% spike in searches for varsity jackets, with Saint Laurent’s woollen iteration and Off-White’s logo-patch number topping shoppers’ most-wanted lists. After Demna Gvasalia unveiled a Vetements diffusion line at the end of July – a sportswear staples line deftly named VTMNTS, comprising track jackets, jumpers and tracksuits – searches for varsity jackets once again peaked by 21% in just 24 hours.

It’s decidedly timely for the resurrection of the varsity jacket, given its ubiquity in the Gen Z-infused re-boot of Gossip Girl. And it’s no surprise that their time to shine has arrived, given their presence in Burberry’s Resort 2021 collection which debuted at the start of the year, and Hedi Slimane’s recent track-inspired spring/summer 2021 Celine collection. Perennially ahead of the curve, Ganni also reimagined the varsity jacket through its own comfort-first lens as part its activewear debut, which launched last week.

Varsity jackets are fashion's latest love-in
Varsity jackets are fashion's latest love-in

The beauty of the varsity jacket lies in its versatility, for here’s a piece that does all of the talking and attention-commanding for you without you so much as having to say a word. Throw on over a slip dress for a juxtaposed way of balancing out the jacket’s boxiness, or match its androgyny with a pair of loose-fitting, wide-leg trousers. Here’s a jacket for life that will transcend trends and do all of the sartorial heavy-lifting between seasons for you. Bit of a drizzle in the middle of August? Reach for your varsity jacket. Prone to a bit of a chill at the pub in the evening? Throw a varsity jacket over your shoulders to snuggle up in style. The possibilities are endless, so really what’re you waiting for?

On your marks, get set, go (find yourself a varsity jacket).

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Images: courtesy of Getty Images.