Manolo says, this story it is not the surprise to the Manolo.
If any discipline at the Winter Olympics had the potential to provide a platform from which to showcase the marriage of high style and high function, it would seem to be figure skating. Yet the glossy ice pond in Turin is a fashion sinkhole, as even the occupationally chirpy talking heads are aware. “Figure skating can have some pretty frightening costumes,” Sandra Bezic, a skating commentator on NBC’s team at Turino, said Tuesday night.
The problem is not the proliferation of “illusion” effects, in which parts are cut from costumes to suggest nakedness, the transparent sections replaced with tan Lycra. It is not that the costumers seem to have staggered off a Mardi Gras parade. It is not that a plague of two-tone or tone-on-tone velvets or random zippers or Chippendale’s tear-away effects or even rhinestones applied in shotgun pattern to every surface has swept the ice rinks. It is not even that bad is so opulently “Showgirls” bad that it can be read as ironic, hence “good.”
The problem is worse. It is that the kitsch that extends to everything from the grim expressionist ballet in the opening ceremony to the Old Glory bandannas to the fieldstone fireplace lighted with licking plastic flames on the NBC set has infiltrated consciousness so fully that it has become a denominator, the one authentically democratic aspect of the Games.
Of the course, the fans of the Project Runway know that the designing the costume for the skating it is not easy. Especially since the ice skating it is so elegant.