Ice Style

ICE STYLE.....Best of 2016-2017 Season Figure Skating Costumes: Ice Dance, Pairs, Men & Ladies!

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The Best Of The Best: 2016-2017 Figure Skating Season

The 2016-2017 Figure Skating Season is over and I felt it was a perfect time to RECAP the BEST of Costumes we saw throughout the season in Ice Dance, Pairs, Men's and Ladies. Overall, I have to say that it was a very good season for costumes, with lots of fabulous designs that pushed the Figure Skating Costume "Ice Style" to a slightly more fashionable, somewhat directional level. The men, especially--Thank Goodness--got slightly more daring and creative in their costumes and we saw less and less of the "Ross Dress For Less" Dress Shirt-Tacky Belt-and-Slacks Look. Lets take a look at some of my favorites from this past season...and of course, let me know which were your favs! I'll begin with...

ICE DANCE
Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir Canada Short Program to Hip Hop: Kiss by Prince, Blues: Five Women by Prince, Blues: Purple Rain by Prince--Prince. Need I say more? Admittedly, this is ALL (or, like 98.8%!) about Tessa's costume. She is wearing a fabulous jumpsuit and it's purple and black, sequined applique and giving homage to the iconic Prince ruffled blouse: It is costume perfection! The thought and detail put into the entire design and especially those side panel cut-outs is commendable and therefore, this was DEFINITELY one of the Standouts of the 2016-2017 Season.

Virtue and Moir Canada Free Dance tPilgrims on a Long Journey by Coeur de Pirate
Latch (Acoustic) by Sam Smith: Virtue and Moir really brought it this past season when it came to their costumes and their Free Skate looks were a perfect example. This dress on Tessa is one of MY TOP FAVORITE COSTUMES for the 2016-2017 Season. She looks Runway Chic, divine and fabulously ethereal all at the same time. The pleated detail is very High Fashion Fab. I usually have a problem with the male partner just being oh-so-boring in black or navy but...WHO CARES??? Tessa looks GORGEOUS It's all about HER...once again! (Sorry Scott!). Of note, s
he wore the putty colored version (top photo, left) for Skate Canada International 2016 but then changed it to the blush/pink when we saw them in Marseilles at the 2016 ISU Grand Prix International (and for the rest of the season). I love both but if I had to choose, I'd go for the pink one.

Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron France Free Skate to Stillness by Nest, Oddudua by Aldo Lopez Gavilan, Happiness Does Not Wait by Olafur Arnalds: One of my favorite Ice Dance costumes of the 2016-2017 Season were worn by the OUTSTANDING pair of Papadakis and Cizeron. I think she looked absolutely ethereal and like a Runway Chic Goddess in this ombre-shaded one-shoulder draped costume dress and Guillaume...well, thank goodness that muscle shirt/top is PLUNGING and SLEEVELESS: Tres Bien!


Maia and Alex Shibutani USA Short Dance to Blues: That's Life performed by Frank Sinatra, Hip Hop: That's Life (remix) performed by Frank Sinatra, Jay Z--I loved these costumes on the Shibutanis; they were chic, modern and a fresh costume perspective while skating to Frank Sinatra and Jay Z. I'm especially a big fan of Maia in a Tuxedo-esque jumpsuit! The sequined/illusion panel is FABULOUS. This above was a slight "Costume Change" from what Maia wore early on in the season for the same Free Skate: 

2016 Skate America and 2016 Cup of China--Which jumpsuit did you guys like best? The 1st one with halter neckline (photo above) or the one in the top photo (with satin lapels)?


Shibutani and Shibutani USA Free Dance to Evolution: Mirror In Mirror by Anne Akiko Meyers, Akira Eguchi--The Shibutani's did well in terms of their costumes this season for both their Short Dance and Free Dance. I liked these royal blue-and-black sequined looks. These were pretty costumes that worked well with the music. I especially loved Alex's draped chiffon top; it was a perfect complimentary look to Maia's floaty dress. The royal blue color theme was beautiful and effective.

Madison Chock and Evan Bates Free Dance to Under Pressure by David Bowie, Freddie Mercury: I wasn't a big SUPERFAN of their Short Dance costumes this season--they were OK but certainly not in my Top Ten. But, I did like these costumes worn for their Free Dance to David Bowie and Freddie Mercury. The costumes were chic, modern yet retro and still reflective of the music. Her purple costume with asymmetrical fishtail hemline and blue-and-orange sequin detail was vibrant, fun and HOT! I also liked his delicately sequined knit top that (if you were paying attention) also featured a slight asymmetrical hemline (like hers). Sexy, fashion-y and stage/ice perfect! They also changed their costumes from the beginning of the season...and I am glad they did:
Chock and Bates: Original Free Skate Costumes from Skate Canada 2016

Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte of Italy Short Dance to Blues: Cry For Me
Boogie Woogie: Choo Choo Boogie--Lastly, I had to include the AMAZING Italians Cappellini and Lanotte in my "Best of 2016-2017 Ice Dance Costumes". I especially loved what they wore for their Short Dance. They always have fun, great character-driven ice dances and these were bold looks perfect for their music and dance. Anna was very 50's fun in a black and white polka dotted dress and Luca was giving Ballroom Dancer Host in his Shawl-collared red and black tuxedo outfit. I really loved her dress and how it was fitted but flowy on her. The gradation of polka dots was perfection. And Luca's strong red colored jacket was impacting and attention-getting fab.


PAIRS
Vanessa James and Morgan Cipres France Short Program to Earned It (from "Fifty Shades of Grey") by The Weekend and Maxime Rodriguez: I always look forward to what James and Cipres wear. These two have the most AMAZING bodies and they almost always give fashion folk like me something when it comes to their costumes. For their Short Program this season, they went sexy, 90's Vintage Versace-like (especially with those back straps on James). I especially liked her black-and-nude illusion sequined trimmed top section as well as the crystal-accented shoulders of his Moto jacket. They both looked on-trend, fashionable and oh-so-chic!

Wenjing Sui and Cong Han China Short Program to Blues for Klook by Eddy Louis: First of all, I am IN LOVE with Wenjing Sui's asymmetrical bob hairstyle! She is definitely a STYLE STAR! These costumes worn for their Short program are nice and effective. I liked how there were subtle style hints that these two belong together; the lace trim and applique detail seen on her costume and then on his shirt accents. They looked modern and still slightly Figure Skating Costume Retro...at the same time. 

Yu Xiaoyu and Zhang Hao Free Skate to Cavatina Larghetto amoroso: Another gorgeous costume pair this season were Yu and Zhang. Her sequined applique costume featured flowers, ombre shading and crystal detailing with a Chanel Couture-like design sensibility. His gray outfit was elegant and a nice masculine contrast to her superb femininity. I especially admired the diagonal pleating detail in his shirt. They were two of the BEST in terms of costumes for 2016-2017.

Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot of Germany Free Skate to Lighthouse by Patrick Watson: I love these costumes worn by Savchenko and Massot for their Free Skate and therefore they are in my Best of 2016-2017 Blog. They were elegant and subdued with a dash of sparkle with the beautiful over-sized crystals. Her costume looked like a figure skating version of a Haute Couture Elie Saab gown especially with the sequined waistband. And his, well--I BOW to him for giving me sequins, ombre and semi-sheer; not many male figure skaters (US males, especially!) who will even go there. 


Speaking of semi-sheer and American...
Marissa Castelli and Mervin Tran Short Program to Fallin' by Alicia Keys: For their Short Program to Alicia Keys, Castelli and Tran wore these violet blue and black costumes, and I really loved them. I loved the color, the jeweled sequin detail and asymmetrical necklines...on both! I thought it was great how her sequins were bolder while his, more subtle. But her costume, especially was a Pairs Star for me this 2016-2017 Season. She gave you FASHIOOOOON huneeeyyyy!

Deanna Stellato-Dudek and Nathan Bartholomay Short Program to Canadian Tenors Medley: These costumes were GORGEOUS and therefore, I had to give them my "Ice Style" Costume Props here on my blog. The colors were sublime; the royal blue-to-black ombre was beautiful. And the sequin work was quite nice as well. I especially liked how her asymmetrical neckline was somewhat reproduced (in a more "manly" way) on Nathan's top. Whoever designed--and created these: A++

Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford Canada Short Program to Killer by Seal: I'm always intrigued when I see a full-on jumpsuit/bodysuit worn in competition and Meagan wore one for her 2016-2017 Season Short Program. I wasn't a big fan of what they wore for their Free Skate (it was a little too "Toddlers & Tiaras" 1980's Pageant-and-Prom) but...I liked this on Meagan and I think it was just right for the music and skate, especially her sequined Lycra bodysuit ensemble. I also loved how Eric was coordinating with her--costume-wise. I would expect these looks from say, the French Pairs of James and Cipres so...it was a nice Costume Surprise to see it on Canadians Duhamel and Radford.

MEN
Denis Ten Kazakhstan Free Skate to Tosca by Giacomo Puccini: I have to begin my "Best of 2016-2017" Costumes for the Men with Denis Ten and this GORGEOUS look from his Free Skate. The entire costume was Skating COUTURE! For its simplicity, delicacy, beautiful sequin work, and the front neckline...and sleeve crystal detail, this was Figure Skating Men's Costume Perfection.

Adam Rippon Short Program to Let Me Think About It (Ida Corr vs. Fedde Le Grand): OK, now I could not discuss my favorites from the 2016-2017 Season without giving special mention to Adam Rippon and BOTH his Short and Free Skate costumes. When I first saw Adam come out onto the ice in this, I swear I was at the Tropicana Beach Club in Mykonos! His barely-there costume of a sleeveless faux leather-and-illusion sequined muscle top (try to say that four times!) and skin-tight black pants went perfectly with the high-energy dance music soundtrack. I loved the royal blue and silver sequin detail at the side and how that illusion back continued past the side seam and onto part of the front asymmetrically. Sexy and right for the skate: At-a-Boy!


Adam Rippon Free Skate to Arrival of the Birds ("Crimson Wing" soundtrack) by The Cinematic Orchestra, O by Coldplay: For his Free Skate, he wore another semi-sheer top with black pants.  Adam has never met a sheer/illusion shirt he didn't love! While yes, this might be a bit repetitive...A) Adam has the .000032% fat-free body to pull it off...and B) this top had sleeves, thank you very much! The music--and his skate--involved birds of sorts, and he showed this beautifully in his choreography. The costume gave "hints" of the feathers, as you can see in the stitched applique work and raw-edged neckline. I loved this and therefore, Adam is on my "Best of 2016-2017 Figure Skating Costumes" List.

Shoma Uno Free Skate to Buenos Aires Hora Cero and Barada para un loco by Astor Piazzolla: I loved this Free Skate costume on Shoma. The red and black were perfect for the music and the delicate and intricate sequin detail was beautiful: He was fiery and Toreador fab. If I had any advice to him, it would be to lose the necklace. I know that sometimes these skaters (Yuzuru Hanyu is another one!) wear these accessories for sentimental or good luck, however, my advice would be to DITCH THEM ASAP!

Patrick Chan Canada Free Skate to A Journey by Eric Radford: For this Free Skate at the 2016 Grand Prix Finals in Marseille, Patrick changed his costume to this Tie Dye top and pants outfit in top photo above. This was (thankfully) a bit more color than we would ever see from him and a nice change from what he originally wore early in the season for the same Free Skate (lower photo above). While, some may argue that it wasn't much of a "costume" per se (it was just a stretch crew neck long sleeve top and pants) but well...it's Patrick Chan kids! I was happy with this and enough so to warrant him--and this costume--a Best of 2016-2017 spot. 

Yuzuru Hanyu Japan Free Skate to Hope and Legacy by Joe Hisaishi--Yuzuru is a big Costume King, when it comes to his competition figure skating ensembles. I love that you know he's going to give you SOMETHING and well, you will not be bored. For this past 2016-2017 Season, he delivered some bold, fun costumes that were attention-grabbing, arguably slightly tacky-licious (it's YUZURU!) and still kind of GREAT! I loved the multicolored draped and gathered stretch chiffon top in his 2016-2017 Free Skate. Look at that photo: It looks easy-breezy but that top probably took many, many hours to get that way. I love how Yuzuru is comfortable with mixing the feminine and pretty, as well as juxtaposing it with the masculine, while also hinting at an old-school "Vintage" figure skating costume vibe. 

Yuzuru Hanyu Japan Short Program to Let's Go Crazy by Prince: Yes, it's Prince and yes, it's Yuzuru. And yes, I liked it. Purple, sleek and Glam Fabulous! If there is any critique, it's all those necklaces of his...too many unnecessary accessories; I understand how meaningful they might be...but they are distracting! Originally when he unveiled the program, the costume was white (top photo above) but then, he switched to the purple. They're both pretty great and almost Figure Skating Costume Iconic. Prince would be proud.

LADIES
Mirai Nagasu USA Short Program to Nocturne No. 20 in C Sharp Minor by Frederic Chopin: Mirai wore this purple costume for her Short Program and it was one of my favorites of the 2016-2017 Season. Mirai always wears costumes that I appreciate and admire. I also love how she is VERY ON-TREND with the "nude back" with sequin detail. Between the color, the sequins, the details, this was a $5,000+-worth costume worth EVERY PENNY darlings!

Mirai Nagasu of USA Free Skate to The Winner Takes It All performed by Sarah Dawn Finer: Not only did I like Mirai's Short program costume but I also loved her Free Skate look for this past season. It was very "Ice Queen" with the white color and delicate crystal beading. I especially loved the neckline and asymmetrically-placed sequins...so pretty. One of the prettiest of the season.


Rika Hongo of Japan Free Skate to Lawrence of Arabia (soundtrack) by Maurice Jarre: Rika really made me happy with this "Near East Diva" costume referencing her "Lawrence of Arabia" music. I. Loved. It. She looked like a sexy Sheikha of Arabia! I also appreciated her crystal crown and arm and hand sequined details of the costume. This looked like the Figure Skating Costume version of a chic fabulous gown from a Lebanese Couturier that I would see during Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week; it was that good!

Satoko Miyahara of Japan Free Skate to The Planets by Gustav Holst: I LOVED this costume so much I had to include it in my Best of 2016-2017 Season. I absolutely adore the Grecian Goddess draping, the stark ivory color and beautiful sequin detail. I also like her crystal double headband. She looks chic, and Figure Skating Red Carpet Ready! This is simply one of THE BEST from the Ladies last season, in terms of costumes. A 10 for sure!


Ashley Wagner Free Skate to Exogenesis Symphony Part 3 by Muse: Ashley's costumes this past season were some of my FAVORITES. For her Free Skate, Ashley did a costume change. Previously, during the 2016-2017 Season, she wore the silver and violet/gray ombre shaded sparkly costume in the top photo above. I loved that costume and thought it looked very expensive and EXQUISITELY done. Later in the season, she changed into the burgundy one in the lower top photo for her Free Skate. This one featured a halter neckline and elongated diamond-shaped clusters of crystals. I liked the first violet/gray costume a little better to be honest; it just looks more refined, Haute and fashion thoughtful. What do you guys think?


Ashley Wagner USA Short Program to Sweet Dreams (Are Made of These) by Annie Lennox: What can I say other than: I LOVED THIS! It's chic, superfab and so right for the Annie Lennox music. Ashley wore this blue asymmetrical design which featured great sequin details on the shoulders, neckline and throughout the costume's torso. I also loved the slight royal blue color "peek-a-boo". Oh and to finish everything off, her smoky eyes and red lipstick were 90's New Wave on-point. This one should go in a Figure Skating Costume Museum ASAP! Soooo good!

Gracie Gold USA Free Skate to Daphnis and Chloe by Maurice Ravel: I liked both of Gracie's Short as well as Free Skate costumes this past season. While Gracie's Short Program costume was more modern (see below), she went back to her "Ice Queen" look with her Free Skate costume. This nude colored design was still quite fabulous and expertly done. The golden sequins were exceptional and I especially loved the hair accessory. Overall: Quite gorgeous and very Nancy Kerrigan "Vera Wang"-retro beautiful.

Gracie Gold USA Short Program: Now, speaking of her Short Program...Gracie skated her Short Program to Assassin's Tango (from "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" soundtrack) by John Powell wearing this very modern black costume. I loved it! It was fresh, directional and fashion forward, especially when it comes to figure skating costumes. I loved the bias binding "spider web-like" detail and the subtle silver crystal embellishment. For some reason I kept thinking that I had seen this look somewhere before...and yep, I was right: It was very reminiscent of this look (right photo, above) from Atelier Versace Haute Couture Spring/Summer 2016. Gracie's costume was a very well done knock-off and I loved the obvious inspiration from actual Hi-Fashion runway shows.


Carolina Kostner Italy Short Program to God of Thunder by Kitaro, Bonzo's Montreux by John Bonham (Led Zeppelin): This past season, Carolina returned to figure skating after a two-year hiatus (and being suspended for lying about her ex-boyfriend, reportedly concealing the fact that he was using banned illegal performance-enhancing drugs--Yikes!). Well, anyhow...she's BACK! This black and white costume for her Short Program is graphic, modern and void of typical sparkly embellishments the sport's costumes are known for. I liked the gathered top and asymmetry of the look, as well as the chic metallic belt. It was directional (for figure skating!) and fashionable.

Evgenia Medvedeva Russia Free Skate to Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and Piano Lesson with Grandma by Alexandre Desplat: It's not every day one sees a top ladies' singles figure skater wearing a dress this long as her costume but it worked for Medvedeva this season. This design had purple-to-lilac ombre shading and an Empire-waist look that featured sequin embroidery. There was almost a Medieval/Game of Thrones look to it providing a somewhat ethereal quality to the background of the somber 9/11-inspired music. It was very memorable, mainly for its delicacy this past 2016-2017 season and worthy of a Best Of mention.


Gabrielle Daleman Canada Short Program to Acte IV Prelude from "Herodiade", Scene XIV Ballet Finale from "Herodiade" by Jules Massenet: I loved this costume on Daleman.  The music is from "Herodiade" opera which retells the story of John The Baptist, Salome, Herod Antipas and Herodias. She's playing "Salome", I assume and looks the part, in a modern fashionable sense. The black costume is highlighted by the GORGEOUS gold, silver and lilac sequins that form a breastplate of snakes. I loved that if one took this costume and made a red carpet gown, it would still be FABULOUS.

Gabrielle Daleman Canada Free Skate to Rhapsody in Blue by George Gershwin: Daleman skated a FABULOUS Free Skate at 2017 Worlds and I thought this royal blue sequined costume was PERFECT for the iconic "Rhapsody in Blue" music and therefore deserved an inclusion here in my Best of Season 2016-2017 "Ice Style" Blog. I appreciated the varying sizes of the crystals strewn throughout the costume and especially how the larger ones highlighted her neckline and waist. Also, I think it was smart of the costume designer to make her skirt very short to make her not-so-long legs seem longer. Visual Fashion Illusion courtesy of a Figure Skating Costume!

Kaytlyn Osmond Canada Short Program Sous le ciel de Paris and Milord performed by Edith Piaf: I thought this design was a nice choice considering her music and beautiful enough to be one of my favorites of the 2016-2017 Season. The neck-tie costume with sequin applique midriff was "Parisian" in its flair and reminded me of the iconic Yves Saint Laurent pussy-bow sheer chiffon blouse. And while I am normally not a fan of the gloves, I think they were correct in this look.

Karen Chen USA Short Program to On Golden Pond by Dave Grusin: OK, when I first saw Karen in this, I thought that she was skating to "Swan Lake", "Black Swan" or "Nutcracker"...you get the picture. But no kids: She skated to "On Golden Pond". And surprisingly, I LOVE it. It was pretty, well made and exquisitely sequined, down to her fingertips. Gorgeous! She debuted this costume at the 2016 NHK Trophy in late November and I'm glad she stayed with it: One of my favorites of the season!

Karen Chen USA Free Skate to Tango Jalousie by Jacob Gade: Tango anyone? Well, for Karen, it was "Si!". This was another very good costume for Karen Chen this past season. The silver and red crystals were beautiful and the scroll-like torso detail was very pretty. For such a young lady, this costume was very mature, and in a super chic way! I also loved her sultry makeup, especially those red lips and SeƱorita eyes.

Last but not least...
Mao Asada Japan Short Program to Danza Ritual del fuego (from "El amor brujo") by M. de Falla: I loved this "Black Swan"-like costume worn by Mao Asada. The nude illusion-and-black applique embellished costume with godet-paneled skirt was stunning, impacting and belongs in a figure skating costume museum.  Mao BROUGHT IT huney, when it came to costumes and as we found out this was her last season since she recently announced her retirement. She went out with a Costume Fab Bang!

**Stay Tuned for my Costumes Tribute to the One-and-Only Mao Asada!

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