Women’s fashion at the French

As a group, the women look better than the men at the French Open. While there haven’t been any outfits that had me rushing for my laptop to order a copy for myself, I’ve seen a few things I think are quite flattering on the players, and also appropriate for the Paris clay.


I was sorry the Williams sisters got knocked out in the early rounds, as both their dresses were terrific. Serena’s, by Nike, mixed pistachio, crème de menthe and coconut ice cream colors for a delicious dress that hugged her curves, looked cool against the burnt clay, and also fit in nicely with the green walls of the court.


Venus, who designs her own tennis wear under the label “EleVen,” was wearing a dress that was actually tasteful — so different from a number of her designs in recent years. Maybe she’s finished making a statement with her tennis clothing and going back to speaking with her racquet?


Caroline Wozniacki is another fashion favorite who unfortunately lost in the third round. I loved the sheer yellow top with the red underneath. Her dresses are by Stella McCartney for Adidas, and she has the good looks to make the designs show their best.


Li Na looks great too. She favors a more “conservative” or at least “covered-up” style, meaning she wears outfits that might look good on some of us tennis-playing moms. I think the purple works well for her, as it connotes positive energy and doesn’t clash with the red/orange clay. Too bad she crumpled at the hands of Yaroslava Shvedova, as we won’t get to see more of Li Na during the French Open this year.


Singles qualifier Shvedova, who beat last year’s champion in the fourth round yesterday, was sporting a cute outfit by Fila. I especially like the black “flames” down the back, which are matched by a big white swoosh across the front of the skirt.  Shvedova is actually a doubles specialist: her partner is one of my personal favorites, American Vania King (they lost in the quarters today). Anyway, congrats to Shvedova on defeating Li Na. If she wants to make her mark in fashion, however, she has to lose the green tennis shoes when she’s not wearing green and definitely do something about the goofy glasses — they don’t match her outfit, either.


The top player whose outfit seemed most out of place to me was Vika Azarenka. She looked terrific when she won the Australian Open earlier this year — she was wearing tennis shorts and a bright blue top with green accents on the sides, a cute cut-out hole in the back and a neon green headband. But for the French she switched to an orange dress with a band of sherbet-colored ruffles at the hem. It didn’t suit her. I mean, when did Azarenka’s aggressive playing style, the one that gave her a 6-3, 6-0 win over Sharapova in the Australian Open final, suggest she should be wearing ruffles?  I think losing in the fourth round should prompt a return to a less girly outfit.  Maybe going back to the clothing style that was working for her earlier will have a sub-conscious benefit on her game.


Until she faltered slightly in the 4th round, the press was describing Maria Sharapova’s performance at the French Open with words like “relentless” and “remorseless.” No doubt about it, she is a formidable competitor. And in my estimation, she’s also the best-dressed female player at the French this year. Maybe it’s just that I like black. (See the previous post, for example.) But Maria rocks her “little black dress” for the 2012 French Open.

I also loved the grey/khaki-colored long sleeve shirt she put on when it was chilly outside during the fourth round match. Now that item did have me reaching for my laptop to see if it was available on Nike’s website (not yet, apparently).

Since most of the top women are out of the tournament at this point, we are going to see some different on-court fashions. Maria, with her Nike sponsorship, not to mention super-model looks and height, will probably outshine the others in appearance. But as our mothers always told us, looks aren’t everything: it will be interesting to find out what happens with the fuzzy yellow ball.


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