Friday Fashion Face-Off: French Open 2019 Best-Dressed Woman

Hurray for the second Friday of a slam, the day when we get to vote for the best-dressed woman! I’m so excited for today’s Fashion Face-off I haven’t even watched the Rafa-Roger semi yet. Is it over? Did it get rained out? Is Rafa still in contention for title #12?

No, don’t tell me! I’m going to watch it right after I post.

So here’s a strange thing. We have three stylish American nominees today…yet I wouldn’t wear a single one of these outfits. What’s my problem, anyway? I’m the same way with jewelry. I like it in the store. And I like it on other people. But I don’t like it on me. Weird, right?

Nominee 1: Sofia Kenin

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The winsome American who toppled Serena Williams in straight sets looked tres chic in this Fila ensemble. The red two-piece makes a statement, which probably goes something like this: “I may be ranked #35 with only one WTA title to my name, but I’ve come to play–and I’m taking you down.”

I love this bold color.

I love the zigzag navy accents.

And I love the length…on Kenin. There’s no way I’d wear a skirt that short!

Nominee 2: Serena Williams

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

After Serena sported a catsuit on court last year, the president of the French Tennis Federation called for a dress code that “respects the game and the place.” I’m pretty sure this isn’t what he had in mind.

On the other hand, how rational is a dress code in a sporting arena? At the end of the match, the garments are typically rumpled and drenched in sweat, the men’s underwear showing through their white shorts, their underarms darkly stained, everyone’s shoes and socks coated in red dust. Does it matter how respectful your clothes are when you walk onto the court if you’re going to be a drippy, dusty, disheveled mess by the time you walk off?

On the other other hand, I’m not saying I liked the catsuit. I didn’t. Neither did most of you.

I’ve run out of hands. Let’s move on…

Serena’s never going to be the wallflower. She’s never going to wear the bumblebees and the faux-polo collar. She’s Serena. So we need to make some allowances for Fashion Face-off purposes and measure her clothes by a different standard. We’ll call it the Serena standard.

Compared to the outre catsuit and the green hotpants and the voluminous tutu, this midriff-baring asymmetrical outfit is flattering. It highlights her impressive physique rather than making a caricature of it.

Would I wear it? Of course not. I would look absurd. I’m guessing you would, too. But on Serena, it’s a winner.

Nominee 3: Amanda Anisimova

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Another up-and-coming American made a splash at the French Open, both for her game and for wearing the only appealing combination in Nike’s “Random Patterns” collection. Anisimova’s quarterfinal opponent, Simona Halep, also sported the bumblebee top. But on the seventeen-year-old, the demure collar and bumblebee print looks especially innocent and sweet. There’s something charmingly old world about this look, as if Anisimova time-machined here from the 1940s.

Again, I wouldn’t wear it. I don’t like playing in a high collar, and I’d look downright matronly in bumblebees. But it’s lovely on the young rising star.

It’s quite a varied slate of nominees this time, isn’t it? I’m very curious to see how this poll turns out. Vote for your favorite below, and tune in next Friday for our round-up of the worst dressed at Roland Garros!

Rafa and Roger, here I come!

7 thoughts on “Friday Fashion Face-Off: French Open 2019 Best-Dressed Woman

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  1. There’s more to Serena’s outfit then a wild look. It also held a hidden message, with the French words for ‘Mother,’ ‘Champion’, ‘Queen’ and ‘Goddess’ subtly intertwined in the pattern.

    1. I’m not positive, but I think those words are just part of the cape (her “warm-ups”). When I zoom in on these two photos, I don’t see those words.

  2. I agree with Julie about all the statements made by Serena’s outfit. But is it awful to add that I think it also says “old”? Not the cut, for sure. Maybe it’s the print? Something about it reminds me of my grandmother. Ok, she was a decent dresser, so maybe I’m being harsh.

    Anyway, you know I love red. Sofia’s outfit is a clear winner for me. It’s classy but bold and unexpected.

    1. Interesting. I don’t read Serena’s outfit as old at all. I know my grandmother wouldn’t have worn it! Sofia does seem to be the winner of this poll.

  3. Frankly, I don’t like any of these outfits very much. Too frou-frou or too dramatic. Bright red…nah. I think that the tennis clothing industry has gone too far in trying to be unique. If I sound like a grumpy old lady, so be it; but I prefer less pattern and more classic lines. What do y’all think?

    1. Well, I like the clothes, even if Serena’s and Amanda’s are not my taste, exactly.

      How is that possible? How can I like something without it being my taste? That sounds contradictory, doesn’t it? I’m a mystery, even to myself.

  4. Well, I am feeling contradictory, too. TO ELENA: Like you, I LOVE red clothing, and I wear quite a bit of it, tough not for sports. Sofia DID look classy in her red outfit. I guess I over-reacted to it being so bold and unexpected. OMG, I am in my 60s and am I already one of those elderly people who don’t like changes?!? (Maybe so…)

Let me know what you think!

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