Sunday, February 09, 2014
A Colorful Spectacle: Sochi Olympics Opening Ceremony

This past Friday was the much-awaited Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony. In the lead up to this grand event, Russia and specifically, Sochi, has not been looking so good in the media as a result of all those social media pics being "seen around the world" of  not-ready hotel rooms, yellow water, unpaved roads, hazardous dumps, too many stray dogs plus, of course, the terrorist threats and warnings and anti-LGBT laws...it all looked as if Sochi would not be "ready for Prime Time". All that was put aside for a spectacular showing of Russian history, pride, and monumental achievements in culture, the arts, music, literature and architecture.


The spectacular fireworks display at the end of the Sochi Opening Ceremony

Ooopsie: One of the five Olympic rings failed to light properly during an important part of the ceremonies but everything else went without any other hiccups.

In addition to the spectacular show, I always love watching the Olympics Opening Ceremony for the "Parade of Nations" and seeing what all the athletes wear. Leading up to these Sochi Olympics, weeks ago, I discussed HERE on my blog what we would see as the uniforms/outfits from some of the international athletes and now, we all got a chance to see them all. Most were quite boring--just a display of lots of uninteresting parkas and "Winter wear". However, there were a few Style Stand-Out's.
 
 Supermodel Sochi Olympics Snow Maiden: Irina Shayk introduces the Russian Federation--Sochi Olympics Opening Ceremony Parade of Nations

Before I talk about my favorite Parade of Nations outfits/uniforms, I want to highlight the super chic Parade of Nations "Snow Maidens" --Snegurochka in Russian-- who were holding the names of the countries. The all white outfits were quite chic. The look featured long sleeves, a high mock-turtleneck and knee-length skirt with side front slit--and yes, those great matching white boots. And those headdresses were quite fab as well. One particular Snow Maiden stood out and that was Russian supermodel--and girlfriend to Portuguese football star Cristiano Ronaldo, Irina Shayk (above photo). Naturally, she was the Snow Maiden for for Russia.

With that out of the way, Here's my list of favorite opening ceremonies Olympic Outfits:
Germany: As style-kooky as these outfits were from the German contingency, it was FABULOUS. It was such a breath of fresh--and colorful--style air just to see SOMETHING different out there at these Sochi opening Ceremonies Parade of Nations. The rainbow-colored parkas, those pajama-like printed pants, it was A LOT but like I said, I was thankful for it, especially when compared to the ba-ba-boring sartorial display from other countries: danke Germany!

Greece: As the first athletes to come out during the Parade of Nations, Greece made a strong statement with Blue parkas and matching track pants--the blue was expected since it is reminiscent of the beautiful church rooftops one sees in Mykonos and Santorini and of course the color is part of the Greek flag. But what caused a Social Media Style stir were those rainbow-colored mittens/knit gloves. Naturally--and not surprisingly--everyone wondered if they were making a statement of solidarity with the LBGT people of the world (and a slap in the face to the discriminatory Russian laws). But, the colors on those mittens were more to give a nod to the Olympic ring colors. I still hope that maybe, the uniforms' designers still wanted to give a wink-and-a-nod to us Gays.

Kazakhstan: In my opinion, the Kazakstan flag bearer, cross-country skier Yerdos Akhmadiyev, wins for Most Stylist Ensemble at Friday's Opening Ceremony. Yerdos was giving you Kazakh Fab in this traditional costume--fur hat, tunic and boots. Everything about this outfit was spectacular. And PS: I want those boots! Not sure where or when I would ever wear them but seriously, those are AMAZING!

Mexico: Coming in as close First runner-Up for Most Stylist flag Bearer is Mexican skier Hubertus von Hohenlohe. Along with the rest of the Mexico Olympic contingency, he wore a black and white Mariachi-inspired track suit. Let me repeat: A Mariachi Track Suit! It featured stripes down the center front, outseams of the pants, sleeve hems and pockets. In an interview, Hubertus said that he might not medal in the ski competition but if anything he wanted to get Best Dressed. I think he's achieved it. Muy Bien!

Georgia: I liked the bold red and white outfits worn by Georgia. They were strong and impactful, especially in a sea of not-so-exciting outfits worn by some of the other countries. I also loved the leanness of the pants and the scarf bearing the name of the country. Well done Georgia.


Sweden: Sweden's uniforms were designed by H & M, of course. I liked these outfits and this is why I have placed them here on my list of Best "Parade of Nations" Sochi Opening Ceremony outfits. The uniforms were sleek and modern. I think the "Style Stars" here were those bright mustard yellow printed scarves and ski caps.

Tonga: LOVE. LOVE. LOVE this palm tree printed hooded parka! Leave it to a very non-Winter weather nation like the island of Tonga to bust out with such a fun fashion statement showing the beauty, flora-and-fauna and tropical nature of their nation. I could totally see this jacket in a D & G, DSquared2 or Versace menswear collection. And I would probably buy it!

Poland: Poland's outfits were quite good. They were very "Winter"-like in its colors and reminded me of snow-capped mountains. I liked the ombre gray and white effect on the parkas, the zig-zag like printing was different and the pops of "Poland red" were great. Those ski caps are cool too.

Venezuela: Venezuela's flag-bearer, alpine skier Antonio Pardo, takes the prize for being THE MOST ENTHUSIASTIC flag bearer at Friday's Opening Ceremony. Antonio came out and waved that flag and danced and jumped up and down as if he had already won FIVE Gold Medals! There was NO ONE prouder or happier to be on that stage. Look at the face of the guy behind him, he's like "Oh Dear! Antonio is about to QUEEN OUT!!"...Oh and yes, in terms of the outfits, I also loved the Venezuelan-flag colored track suits. But more importantly, Antonio wins on enthusiasm alone: that was stylish to me.

Russia: In my post where I discussed what the athletes would be wearing, I kind of dissed these ensembles from the Russian Federation. However, now after seeing what 80% of the international athletes wore for their respective countries, I kinda liked these! They stood out, the 70's-like Hippie Chick fur trimmed coats were quite fashion fab (in a retro way) and the red, white and indigo blue colors were well mixed and used in different variations throughout the parade of outfits. So, yes, I take it back: I LIKEY these!

USA: I also have to reassess my comments on these "uniforms"/outfits worn by the USA contingency of athletes at Friday's Opening Ceremony. I know that these sweaters are A LOT and very "AMERICANA" in your face and many people criticized them (including myself) but again, after a sea of boring parkas, I was really happy to see something different and this was it! The too-muchey patchwork-like sweaters were the perfect 'Statement making"piece of clothing to wear with the stark white skinny pants and white turtlenecks. In retrospect, I do think the Ralph Lauren design team styled this and designed these just right!

Finally, after stating my Top 11 Favorite Outfits from the Sochi Opening Ceremony, I wanted to mention one particular country that was a Style Let-down--and that dubious honor goes to...
France: Seriously France. What. Is. This. Above. Putty Gray and Khaki. No. And No. For supposedly being the Fashion Capital of the World, this was a major let-down for France. Next time, the French Olympic committee should pay the big bucks and hire Jean Paul Gaultier, Stephane Rolland or Alexandre Vauthier to design these. S'il vous plaƮt.

0 comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails


Loading...


BLOG ARCHIVES