Ice Network

The Inside Edge: 2014 Champs best-dressed list

Chock, LeDuc stand out among peers; Davis, White stay just as sharp
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Madison Chock and Tim LeDuc stole the show with their fashion mastery. -Sarah S. Brannen

We're home, and have thus officially started the recovery process for post-Championships depression; get us to the gym! We hope everyone got back without drama, since there was enough drama in Boston for a year.

We got our first glimpse of the Olympic team Sunday night, dressed to kill on the way to a reception for all current and former U.S. Olympians. They all seemed to shine, not just with sequins and stones but with inner luminescence. Gracie Gold was in teal satin, Marissa Castelli wore a slinky full-length crimson gown with a high side slit, and Maia Shibutani was in a short embroidered cloth of gold. Jason Brown looked very grown up in a gray suit, and was almost speechless with amazement and joy.

"What's happening? What's happening?" he said, shaking his head, wide-eyed.

Madison Chock just about stole the show, even from stunning Meryl Davis and Ashley Wagner (in short emerald green). Chock was in a silver-gray, full-length dress from BCBG with a slit up the front, under a black jacket with chain epaulettes she designed herself. What an event it must have been.

There are only 22 days to go until the Olympic opening ceremonies, so we had better get right to the best-dressed list for the 2014 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships!


Best costumes, men: Jeremy Abbott, costumes by Elise Fife. This may be a controversial choice, but what is fashion without pushing the envelope? We really liked Abbott's burgundy-purple short program shirt with cylindrical beads in chevron lines, mostly for its relation to what is going on in fashion today; you could wear this shirt to an awards show. We know we would. And we were living for the details on the pants, like the sleek diagonal pockets.

For the free skate, Abbott wore a shirt inspired by Whistler's painting "Nocturne in Black and Gold: The Falling Rocket," which hangs in the Detroit Institute of Arts.

"I fell in love with it immediately, and the more research I did on the piece, the more I loved it," Abbott told us. "So, I had Tess Johnson make some yards of the print and my lady made the shirt."

With our minds stuck in the fashion gutter all week, we instantly noticed that Abbott came out for the six-minute warm-up for the free skate in gray pants but changed to very dark blue, almost black, pants for his program.

"The ones I had in the warm-up were new and I had skated in them but not jumped," Abbott said. "When I was warming up, I felt like I didn't have enough range of motion in them, so I grabbed the blue ones I had brought for the exhibition. Thank goodness I had them."

Runners-up: Adam Rippon's free skate costume by Jan Longmire, and Max Aaron, whose modern, masculine styling showed off his powerful physique. It was hard to pick a winner in this category, actually, because there were so many good costumes. The men must have gotten our memo from last year. Well done, boys.

Best costumes, ladies: For the short program, we adored Rachael Flatt's silver patterned dress, with its swirling and sparkling beads. Mesmerizing. Julie McDonough, Flatt's long-time costume-maker, came out of retirement to make it for her, which is appropriate, given that this competition was Flatt's last before retirement.

Runner-up: Polina Edmunds' pretty Grecian free skate dress by Lilya Dukler in soft, palest blue, and Agnes Zawadzki, in a fierce and -- dare we say -- sexy black lace Spanish number by Pat Pearsall. Its long sleeves complemented her long lines and added to the mystery of the tight black lace.

Most improved: Gracie Gold. We liked her winning blue free skate dress very much, and it was very "her." As we discussed in Sunday's Inside Edge, designer Brad Griffies made two dresses for Gold, the blue one and the purple one she wore in practice just three weeks before the Championships.

Pairs: This category includes the Best Use of Purple by a Man, the "Drew Meekins Award," which goes to Max Settlage for his short program costume.

We saw a lot of nice dresses on the pairs girls, particularly Marissa Castelli's Bond girl dress by Yumi Nakamura, with appliqué lace and black rhinestones catching the light, not overpowering but subtle and beautiful. We also liked Alexa Scimeca's pretty Elena Pollack princess dress. She looked like royalty. We have to say, the male pairs skaters need to step it up; we'll hope to see some great looks next season. Think Trankov.

The winners in the pairs category won last year, too: DeeDee Leng and Tim LeDuc, whose black and blue short program costumes were as brilliant and modern as the choreography by Shanette Folle.

Dance: Who could win this but Meryl Davis and Charlie White? To go along with their perfect scoring program, a perfect costume. They always show off different costumes by Luann Williams and Stephanie Miller throughout the year, and this year, each one has been even more beautiful than the last. We're going to just give up and call this the Davis and White award.

Runners-up: Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue's free dance costumes, done by themselves and Madison's mom, Susan, and Madison Chock and Evan Bates, both for their glam Gatsby-esque short program looks and the perfect Les Misérables free dance. Chock designs their costumes as well as some of her own clothes.


Best hair, ladies: Junior ice dancer Holly Moore, whose thick blonde locks were reminiscent of Brooke Castile's.

Best hair, men, the "Charlie White" award: Chris Knierim. His longer hair was sexy, romantic, charming, Russian, everything you want in a pairs boy. He wore a hat for the first couple of days in Boston, which was obviously to add to the dramatic on-ice reveal. The look came about by accident: The busy boy didn't have time for a haircut amid training for the Championships, and his coaches realized the look was working.

Best shoes: Griffies, who wore a different and fun pair of Christian Louboutins every day of the Championships.

Best dressed media: Nick McCarvel of NBC Olympics. Whether it was glasses or no glasses, we don't care! Fabulous hair and great use of scarf.

Best use of fur: Nathalie Péchalat. Her ensemble blew us away, from the cute hat, to the interestingly cut jacket, to the incredible boots. Check out the picture in the gallery.

Most eye-catching: Ice dancer Katherine Pilgrim. Her look may not have been to everyone's taste, but you couldn't take your eyes off her. Magenta hair, long pink skirt, tight leather pants, intriguing tops -- if you saw her, you'll remember her.

"All the girls at my rink are blonde," Pilgrim told us, "And my coach (Natalia Linichuk) wanted me to stand out."

Objective achieved.

Best dressed, female: Michelle Kwan. Subtle, sophisticated, professional as a member of the media for the first time. She looked incredible in the purple number she wore for her Hall of Fame award; we assume it was by Vera Wang. Wang was in Boston for part of the time during the Championships, by the way.

We must say however, that Chock looks amazing pretty much all the time, putting the divine in diva in the best possible way.

Best dressed, male: LeDuc, who wore several interesting looks, ranging from geek-chic to Miami beach disco-fab. We saw him in Joshua McKinley (from Project Runway Season Eight), Louis Vuitton shoes and blazer one night, and the next, a navy blazer with red buttons from TR New York, with a Louis Vuitton white button-down shirt. Shoes by Giorgio Bruitini.

Best-dressed coach, the "Mark Mitchell" award: Massimo Scali, in Burberry with Gucci shoes. Kori Ade looked really beautiful all week in her bohemian style, and she gets a million points for doing it with two tiny kids in tow. Caryn Kadavy looked fantastic every time we saw her. We're obsessed with her bittersweet-orange peacoat. We'll take two.

Best-dressed official: Sean Rettstatt, who did flashy-and-classy with every look. He's the king of patterns and mix-and-match and gets extra points for rocking bow ties and leopard-print shoes one day. He works it!

Best formal wear: How much did we love that all the sweepers but one for the men's event were little boys, in the adorable little tuxes. Cutest.

It's hard to believe the European championships started Wednesday, and that Four Continents is next week. Enjoy the whirlwind!

Back soon, with a very special guest-blogger,

Sarah and Drew
Follow us on Twitter @SarahandDrew for more pictures!