"Not activewear fashion, but fashion that's active," is how Victoria Bartlett described her recent philosophy shift at VPL. Long before other designers latched on to the sporty trend en masse, Bartlett was creating athletic-inspired clothes that both she and her customers often wound up wearing during workouts. So it made sense when, beginning with Spring ’14, the designer started using high-tech fabrics that wick away moisture, offer UV protection, or even nourish the skin. (SeaCell, in particular, incorporates seaweed fibers, which promote the release of nutrients.)

While these new and improved VPL pieces now perform better than ever at the gym, they still make strong sartorial statements on city sidewalks and beyond. Bartlett demonstrated their range with her creatively styled lookbook. Second-skin leggings were layered underneath rolled-up, asymmetric track pants, and the label's signature sports bras were worn backward. Other highlights here included a bomber jacket/sweatshirt hybrid, color-blocked tube skirts, and breathable knit pullovers featuring harness-like bands that curve around the shoulders. A standout pair of polar-fleece sweatpants, which were tailored to resemble relaxed men's tuxedo trousers (but still had an elastic waistband) nicely exemplified Bartlett's fusion of fashion and physicality. Forward-thinking ideas like hers beg for a collaboration with a major sports brand such as Nike.