Olympic style: Men's figure skating continues its glittery legacy
We thought the pairs figure skating teams came up with some out-there ensembles, but the costumes worn by the men's figure skaters on Tuesday night out-sequined the pairs by a long shot. Rhinestone-encrusted stretch velvet, sheer cut-outs, medieval approximations and skeleton graphics were but a few of the wacky looks the guys donned to go for the gold.
Stephane Lambiel from Switzerland channeled Prince Valiant in a medieval-looking tunic with puffed sleeves and a breast plate ("His costume looks overpowering," noted one sports announcer. "It almost looks like it's burdensome for him.") while Canadian Vaughn Chipeur took the Ed Hardy phenomenon too far -- gliding out in an black stretchy T-shirt festooned with Hardy-esque tattoo graphics rendered in primary-colored sequins.
Russia's Evgeny Plushenko, the 2006 Olympic gold medalist, also went the "Nutcracker" route, but in a black tunic riddled with rhinestones in floral patterns. France's Brian Joubert and Canada's Patrick Chan followed suit in similar -- but less ostentatious -- black, sparkly tunics.
Perhaps the busiest outfit of the night was worn by Daisuke Takahashi from Japan. The young skater donned black pants with a shredded, laced-up glittery floral top featuring rows of stand-up ruffles and a single faux gold glittery lapel. The affect was very Liberace-attacked-by-wolves.
Speaking of drama, Kevin Van der Perren of Belgium was a glittery skeleton on ice -- his black suit emblazoned with sparkly human bones. And famously over-the-top U.S. skater Johnny Weir looked like a Betsey Johnson store exploded all over him in a sequined black bodysuit accented by a faux corset "laced up" with hot pink ribbons (a streak of pink ran down his arm, ending at the tip of his middle, gloved finger -- very early Madonna.)
The most trite costume of the evening was easily that worn by Italy's Samuel Contesti, who skated in dirtied hayseed overalls (with one shoulder pinned down near his waist) over a plaid button-front shirt, with a single, matching plaid pocket misguidedly sewn onto his toned backside.
Photos left to right: Stephane Lambiel. Credit: George Bridges / MCT; Daisuke Takahashi. Credit: Jamie Squire / Getty Images; Kevin Van Der Perren. Credit: Vicenzo Pinto / AFP/Getty Images. Johnny Weir, Credit: Clem Murray / Philadelphia Inquirer / MCT