Monday, October 27, 2014
The Top Three Ladies: (L to R) Russia's Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (Silver), Elena Radionova of Russia (Gold) and Gracie Gold of the USA (Bronze)--2014 Skate America

It's Grand Prix of Figure Skating season! This past weekend was the 2014 Hilton HHonors Skate America and therefore, we all know what that means: time to discuss the COSTUMES! In my last post, I talked about the Men's so now it's time for the Ladies. I want to begin with Gracie Gold of the US:

Gracie Gold of the USA, Short Program to "Piano Concerto" by Edvard Grieg--This midnight blue and sequined costume was VERY Gracie in its demure and "Ice Princess" style. It matched the music and what we have come to expect from Gracie. But...I somehow wanted a little more; it was pretty yet it bored me.

Free Skate to "The Phantom of the Opera" by Andrew Lloyd Webber--Delicate violet sequined applique highlighted this costume--along with nude illusion and a chiffon "skirt" section. It was pretty and worked well with the music but yet again, I expected a little more. It was definitely in the "classic" folder of Figure Skating Costume designs; nothing extraordinary and frankly, not very memorable. But, with that being said, they are both Elite Level Figure Skating Costumes. You can tell they are well made, high quality and a step above many others in the competition. Gracie has a penchant for changing costumes, so I hope we get to see other options throughout the season.

Samantha Cesario of the USA, Short Program to "Danza Mora" by Dr. Samy Farag--I liked the maroon color and sequin details of this costume for Samantha's Short Program. The gold, pink and cobalt blue sequins really stood out and I especially liked the back; it looked like a fabulous spiderweb.

Free Skate to "Carmen" by Georges Bizet and Rodion Shchedrin--Samantha skated to "Carmen" and wore this Tania Bass-designed costume above. Since we all know that "Carmen" has been skated to--and designed--over and over again--this was a good costume considering. The sequined applique detail of the bodice was very well done and I liked the asymmetry of the nude illusion placement. Part of me, however, would love to see a big ol' peineta and mantilla! I know, it may be too much and not necessarily helpful when doing jumps and turns. 

Mirai Nagasu of the USA, Short Program to "Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini" by Sergei Rachmaninoff--Mirai wore this deep lilac/violet colored costume with silver crystals placed asymmetrically on the bodice in a feather-like design. I thought this costume was both bold and pretty for Mirai. I also liked the "one-shoulder sleeve" look.

Free Skate to "Madame Butterfly" by Giacomo Puccini--Gorgeous! Look at the detail of Mirai's costume worn for her FS to "Madame Butterfly". The black costume had lilac and silver crystals placed to look like fabulously bedazzled butterfly wings. So beautiful. Mirai may not have done so well at this weekend's "2014 Skate America" (she came in 6th), but with her costumes she was definitely on the top list!

Elena Radionova of Russia, Short Program to "De Mi Vera te Fuistes" by Pepe Romero and "Ain't It Funny" by Jennifer Lopez--Yes, you read right, fifteen year old Elena skated to JLo! In case you missed it, the ISU has allowed actual vocals for the first time this season in all disciplines. Now, back to the costume--Elena wore this red costume which paralleled the flamenco and "Latino" flair of her music. I thought it was a bit over-designed and was a bit of a mish-mash; the dress didn't really have a stand-out design aspect and what are those tacky fingerless gloves with roses on them?

Free Skate to "Piano Concerto No. 3" and "Trio élégiaque No. 2" by Sergei Rachmaninoff--Here's another case of over-designing for a figure skating costume. I thought the beading, sequins and multi-sized pearl detail on top was OUTSTANDING and looked very Couture--and I liked the hair bands--but the rest of the costume was a mess; it was TOO MUCHEEY. The royal blue costume had a gathered bodice, pleated torso detail plus a wrap/twisted draped accent as well. I feel that this costume should have been a simple angelic-like ivory to the top section's beading.


Costume Queen: Just a reminder of Elena's costumes LAST season (above photos)--and yes, now when you look at the new costumes--still over-designed--they seem rather tame in comparison!

Elene Gedevanishvili of Georgia, Free Skate to "Burlesque"--Ladies and gentlemen...I present to you A Jumpsuit! Elene wore a dark gray/almost black stretch jumpsuit with crystals accents throughout. the costume also featured an "open back". It looked like a very sassy and jazzy workout outfit and I have to say, I liked it!

Mae Berenice Meite of France, Short Program to "Hosanna" by Soweto Gospel Choir, "The Groove You Liked (Mala Dub)" by Savanj Rooms and "Freedom"--Mae Berenice wore this creme and gold costume with armor-like bodice detail and gold and ivory beading. the design featured an off-the-shoulder style, held by nude illusion. I am a BIG STICKLER when it come to illusion and making sure it matches the skin color of the skater and here on Mae Berenice, it does! good job!

Free Skate to "Conquest of Spaces," "Shadows" and "Run Boy Run" by Woodkid--Mae Berenice wore this exact same jumpsuit with heavily sequined "vest" detail last season and at her appearance at the Socchi 2014 Winter Olympics. Last year, it was a completely different Free Skate (with music by "Europa" by Jean-Pierre Danel, "We Will Rock You" by KCPK and "La Grange" by Jean-Pierre Danel). I guess she decided that the same costume would work for this 2014-2015 season. Or maybe, her new costume wasn't ready in time for 2014 Skate America. We'll see at her next Grand Prix if she wears this costume again.

Elizaveta Tuktamysheva of Russia, Free Skate to "Batwannis Beek" and "Sandstorm"--When I first saw her on the ice with this dolman/caftan-like costume with gold sequin and metallic detail, I thought she looked rather "Scheherazade-ish" and Thank goodness, the music started and the Near Eastern sounds blended perfectly with the costume. I liked this look and liked the way the dolman sleeves flowed with her turns and jumps. She really used the costume to extend the theme of her skate. I almost shrieked when I was watching yesterday on NBC and Johnny Weir said something to the effect of "bed sheet" when describing this. Note to Johnny: it's a caftan-like dolman sleeve style darling...NOT a bedsheet.

**UP NEXT: The Pairs and Ice Dance Costume Highlights of 2014 Skate America!!

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