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Lululemon launches “couture” leggings with new Forster Rohner collab


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Photo: Lululemon

Even living in a fast fashion world, the words “haute couture” are enough to make plenty of people slow down and appreciate the truly remarkable craftsmanship that goes into a dress or outfit that can take several months and hundreds of hours of intricate work to create—they’re willing to wait in line to see them IRL at major museum exhibitions or watch documentaries (think: Dior and I) for a BTS look at how a single gown is made. A very rare few are even willing to pay tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars to own these one-of-a-kind pieces.

While those types of price tags put couture clothing out of the reach of the vast majority of people, some of the techniques used to produce them are now being used to create a decidedly more obtainable (and practical) wardrobe staple—leggings. Today, Lululemon announced that it’s teamed up with the 113-year-old, high-fashion fabric company Forster Rohner to create a limited-edition holiday collection manufactured using some of the same applications luxury designers like the aforementioned Dior, as well as Oscar de la Renta, Prada, and Chanel turn to the storied Swiss textile and embroidery maker for…but with a twist.

“Our design team re-engineered the applications of embroidery into our mesh fabrications.”

It’s the first time Forster Rohner’s worked with an active apparel company, and in order to make its signature, delicate fabrics, like lace, suitable for sweat sessions, Lee Holman, Lululemon’s creative director, says his design team hand-drew patterns at their headquarters in Vancouver, Canada, which they flew to Forster Rohner’s home base in St. Gallen, Switzerland. There, the company’s skilled craftsman duplicated the artwork using digital embroidery machines. And finally, to ensure they could hold up during even a hardcore HIIT class, “our design team re-engineered the applications of embroidery into our mesh fabrications,” Holman says. “It took numerous trials to perfect the color and techniques.”

Photo: Lululemon

The resultant capsule features details like swirling, gothic florals, panes of what appears to be barely there black lace (trust, it’s tougher than it looks), and trompe l’oeil shoulder epaulettes on four all-new silhouettes: the Get Set Bra Embroidered ($68), Wunder Under Pant Hi-Rise Special Edition ($118), Embroidered to You Tunic ($118), and Embroidered to You Hoodie ($138).

Additionally, the two design teams conspired to create three digital prints—the Embellished Multi, the Fluorlace Multi (pictured above), and the Overlaced—which will be offered in a variety of core Lululemon styles. All pieces are available for purchase online and in select stores now. Prices range from $48–$138. 

Other Lululemon news to put on your radar: it’s expanded its collab with cool girl-approved sneaker company APL, and created a new fabric that’s trying to change the way you sweat, NBD.