Everyone’s talking about how Techwear is gonna be the next big thing but what people don’t realise is that smart folks have been incorporating garments with some sort of tech into their lives for a very long time. And if you aren’t after the total techninja look and are just looking for outfits that have real performance and utility, you don’t have to spend a fortune either. Read on to see how you can hop on this trend and make life a little more comfortable this summer!
Budget techwear goes one of two ways – You can either head down over to asos/Zara/H&M and buy pieces in cotton with as many pockets and straps as humanly possible OR you could get your hands on some lightweight running gear from sportswear brands. I live in Delhi where summer temperatures are about 40°C (104°F) on a good day, and most major techwear brands do not make clothes for these kinds of temps. I’d be sweating bullets in any ACG Spring/Summer jacket in Delhi. On the other hand, mainline Nike and Adidas have decent running gear that is breathable, ergonomic and affordable. Granted, the fit isn’t going to look the way you’d imagine a regular techwear fit to be, this is more of a technical athleisure fit, however it serves the purpose and that is the ethos of techwear.
Heavy outwear in the summer is a total no-no. I’d actually do without an outer layer but the sun comes down hard and I do get cold quick going in and out of air-conditioned buildings so this Adidas Climacool mesh hoodie ticks the right boxes with a sweat wicking mesh body, zippered pockets, a 3m stripe alongside the zipper and thumb holes for that ninja feel (they also stop the sleeves from riding up your arm). The mesh is airy and lightweight so you barely know its there. If you are a swoosh fan you can pick up the Nike Impossibly Light jacket which also comes in a bolstered Shield version. Both these jackets are easy to pack away into a standard messenger bag, which comes in handy if you need to ditch a layer. My base layer is just a white cotton tee but if you can afford to go with a merino tee, you should. Or just get a nice linen shirt.
The bottoms are a pair of woven joggers from Jordan Brand that come with a zippered media pocket and articulated knees. I use public transport on the daily so these pants help keep my belongings safe and are perfect when you have to make a quick dash for closing train doors. With a total of 5 pockets and the all over elephant print, they have utility and look dope.
High temperatures have been proven to make people lazy so I went laceless. The Puma DiscBlaze may not be a shoe that pops up in techwear fits but I think it’s got the right look. A combination of leather, mesh and neoprene on the upper and the futuristic looking disc and cage system make these rather perfect for fits like this, probably till I get my hands on some blacked out Racers. Not to mention these are comfy.
The hoodie and the joggers were outlet pickups so overall this outfit didn’t cost me much but it does offer a lot of utility and comfort. Not to mention it does look cool. It shouldn’t be hard to find suitable replacements for these pieces as long as you keep things like construction, fit and weight in mind. Techwear isn’t just for rich dudes in wet/frigid places and this summer you can ditch those chinos and button downs for something with a few more pockets and a lot more comfort. And remember, wearing all black in the summer is a bad idea.
Photos by Gaurav Karki