In the 1980s, fashion was influenced by the western economic boom. The dominant market was getting older and was also financially secure. Designer labels and branding gained impetus. Brand names became status symbols especially in the area of for sports gear and sportswear.
By 1979 exercise had become a routine part of many people's lives. Some played squash, others tennis, some jogged, others joined health clubs and took on the whole package. Dance studios with jazz tap exercise and step classes mushroomed. As the craze grew so did a practical need for sports clothes that were up to the task of being easy care for busy people.
1983 ad for Sears clothing featuring tennis player Evonne Goolagong
Synthetic fabrics with their easy care, strong and often stretch properties were the ideal choice for most sports. Synthetic materials such as licra could also be dyed in strong vibrant colours which were the hallmark of the 80s. Colours were bright and often combined with a contrast secondary colour and white. Typical combinations were navy and white or sea green, sea green and purple, purple and pink, purple and mauve, purple and yellow, peach and sea green, sea green and pastel aqua, royal blue and pale blue, black and white, red black and white or multi computer generated prints of all those colours with just about every colour in the design.
Hip Hop and Sports wear in 1980's
During the 1980s, hip-hop icons began to wear clothing items such as brightly colored name-brand tracksuits, and brand name sneakers usually Pro-Keds, Puma, and Adidas-brand shelltoes. Other clothing brands such as Reebok, Kangol, Champion, Carhartt, and Timberland were very closely associated with the hip hop scene,particularly on the East coast with hip hop acts such as Wu-Tang Clan and Gangstarr sporting the look.
If you look closely at the shoes on the front left hand performer you can make out a air Jordan symbol
The Nike capture of soon-to-be superstar basketball protege Michael Jordan from rivals Adidas in 1984 proved to be a huge turning point. It launched a massive and very effective advertising campaign and began to dominated the urban streetwear sneaker market in the late 1980s and early 1990s.