Roland Garros Fashion Grades: Ivanovic, Wozniacki, Lopez Stun, Nadal, Stephens Double Fault
As Roland Garros gets underway, it’s time to dissect the Slam’s many fashion hits and misses, and assign grades. We cover Nike, adidas, Wilson Tennis, Asics, Fila, Uniqlo, Lotto, Lacoste and Under Armour, and include athletes such as Ana Ivanovic, Maria Sharapova, Rafael Nadal, Sloane Stephens, Dominika Cibulkova, Feliciano Lopez and many more.
Adidas: Same Styles, New Colors, Two Exceptions
Ana Ivanovic: I cannot get enough of this dress. This is my favorite dress that adidas has put on Ivanovic in recent years. Yes, years. The creative directors finally put down the highlighter and Jackson Pollock filter, and created an exquisite dress with a feminine skirt fringe and just the right amount of red-pink lining to complement the navy. The continuation of the diagonals around the shoulders and back is also nicely implemented on her wristbands. My only issue with this look? The fact that Ivanovic is clad in a BLACK visor with a NAVY dress. Did adidas forget she loves visors?
Grade: A+ (for the dress sans visor)
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga: Adidas’ second new style adorns the top Frenchman, and boy did they deliver. In contrast to the asymmetrical lines seen on Monaco (further down), designers opted for balance with grey and white, splashed with sometimes deep yellow accents. The ever so subtle ribbing seen near the thigh of the shorts give it some spunk. There is also a black-and-yellow version instead of this grey-and-white version available, but I hope they keep this color palette on Tsonga.
Caroline Wozniacki: Stella McCartney is finally doing Wozniacki right this season. It’s the same dress she’s been in since January, but why change something that ain’t broke? The details seen on the lining add dimension, the illusion of a higher feminine waistline are a nod to couture, and the color balance is near perfection for her athletic body.
Other Women: Nearly every other adidas female is wearing the two-piece set below, including *deep breath* Sorana Cirstea, Shelby Rogers, Angelique Kerber, Christina McHale, Bojana Jovanovski, Paula Ormaechea, Flavia Pennetta, Arantxa Rus, and Monica Puig, and several others are wearing the capped-sleeved version. Ana Ivanovic was also on this list as recently as last week, and it’s the same style we’ve seen from adidas since January as well. Next, please.
Juan Monaco, Fabio Fognini, Daniel Brands: Last December in my 2013 preview, I mentioned that I couldn’t wait to see the blue version in action, and I wasn’t disappointed. There is something wonderfully retro about the color blocks and asymmetrical lines that just works. The white version on Fognini is a bit simple, but the white (as with black) is a nice contrast to the background of Roland Garros.
Viktor Troicki: Oh, adidas. I guess you can’t get them all right at the same time. This shirt is a strain to look at and just a complete fail. Andy Murray sported a similar style recently that saw many polarizing opinions, but even his colors were more toned-down than this.
Nike: Back to (Too Plain) Basics
Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer: Rarely does Nike get both of their top players wrong at the same time, but they have achieved the impossible and Just (Did Not) Do It this time. The accents are too subtle, the shirts too neutral and the shorts too plain, though the color of Nadal’s shorts could look great on a different colored surface. These kits are meant for players outside of the top 100, not those in the top 5.
Maria Sharapova: Did Nike and Stella McCartney get together to collaborate on Sharapova’s and Wozniacki’s dresses? Regardless, the silhouette is slim and lightweight but I don’t think many others can pull it off. Though it looks great on Sharapova, the double straps at the bustline are completely unflattering even on the modelesque Russian.
Serena Williams: We’re used to seeing Serena in all sorts of colors, so putting her in a deep rich navy and an orange that camouflages into the clay was a risk, but luckily it paid off. The dress hangs off her body perfectly and they have kept her in her signature higher waistline. However, much like with Sharapova, the bustline is drawing my attention for all the wrong reasons. It seems Nike forgot that Serena was voluptuous and had to sew her up (bottom picture). Other than that small mixup, it’s Nike’s best look this Slam.
Sabine Lisicki, Petra Martic, Li Na: See note for Nadal and Federer above. The colder weather brought out some longer sleeves, but the kits are just too conservative for one of tennis’ biggest stages.
Wilson: Orange Starbursts
Men: Wilson is not know for their clothes line. However, this is an exquisite exception. Normally, orange should not work on this red-orange clay, but it’s just warm enough to pull off, and the stripes on the top break the visual just enough to be flattering. The grey shorts (instead of black) keep it well away from Halloween, and actually balance the bright colored top. But what pulls this look together are the black-and-orange shoes. “More Win” indeed.
Women: As good as the men’s kit is, the women’s dress is the complete opposite. A full-bodied dress in this color — accented with an even brighter blue — won’t work on any skin tone, any body type, anybody, period.
Asics: Patterns In, Solids Out
Joao Sousa: Portuguese player Joao Sousa has been sporting this kit since the Australian Open on and off, but given his lower ranking, has often escaped visuals. It’s Asics best kit within the past two years, with just enough green set against the black base. Just a perfect kit and flattering on any surface.
Gael Monfils: Admittedly, Asics probably didn’t think that Monfils would wear that monstrosity of a combination with the sleeveless top and undershirt for the cold weather, but it’s how everyone remembers his impressive first round win over Tomas Berdych. Without that small hiccup though, it’s nice to see sleeveless back on tour.
Rest: While the black base works when strewn into a pattern as with Sousa, it doesn’t work in simple solids next to screaming yellows and blues as seen on Johnson/Pospisil and Montanes. The green is also the wrong shade on Matosevic. If his shirt were more the color of his wristband, it would be passable. And Montanes just looks like a crossing guard with those shoulder and cross-chest lines.
Fila: Pipping it up
Men: Fila has stayed with solids and eye-catching accents for its men this season, and it’s paying off. The lime tops worn by Bedene and Levine have just enough character, with the black and white stripes continuing into the shorts. Seppi’s grey polo holds well against the clay, and the lemon pipping moves with the body giving the kit a kick.
Uniqlo: Done Right
Novak Djokovic and Kei Nishikori: Uniqlo scores big with both kits. The pale teal top on Djokovic is finally not trying too hard — as some of his past Uniqlo kits have. And the red, white and blue palette for Nishikori has just enough kick and detail on the wings.
Lotto: Mixed Nuts
Women: Lotto has never shown much character in their dresses and separates due to poor color choice or lack of accents. However, this is a new beginning (I hope!) for the brand with two-toned kits and the peek-through colors at just the right places on the dress and skirt. It finally doesn’t look like hanging loose fabric, but actually has a bit of a waist.
Men: Suffice it to say, several of the Lotto men didn’t fare so well. Perhaps it’s because I can’t look at flaming colors anymore this year, but the orange and green shirts are even turning the player’s skin tone orange (Istomin and Almagro) and green (Ferrer).
Lacoste: Color and Style Confusion
Women: Dominika Cibulkova simply should not be put in sleeves. Her petite and curvy body construction beckons for skin exposure, and this … dress, two-piece? — What is it anyway? … makes her look like a 10-year-old who raided mom’s closet. The skirt runs up more awkwardly than is typical with Cibulkova, and the shirt is oversized and bunching in all the wrong places. Alternatively, the dress on Halep is what Cibulkova should have worn. I don’t mind this dress — in fact, the skirt is girly and fun — but the white line down the middle makes this nearly faultless dress less of a statement.
Grades: D; B
Men: I’ve been staring at this kit for several days now, and I still don’t know whether I like it or not. Guess that should already be enough of a sign. Depending on how the players’ bodies move and what angle the camera captures, the kit looks less and more flattering all at once. Though Lacoste usually does a good job in this line, the color blocks aren’t quite as charming this time around.
Under Armour: Highlighter Overload
Sloane Stephens: This is the highlighter to cap all highlighters (pun intended). Once again, Under Armour has over-styled her ensemble and made it too matchy-matchy. And don’t get me started on the actual color. Actually, if UA had flipped the accent jade color for the flaming hot yellow, it may have worked better — but she’s already sported that look, so nevermind. Ok, I give up.
Agree, disagree? Give us your take in the comments!