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Donovan: NHK Trophy fashion podiums

Miyahara earns gold for short program look; Pogorilaya claims 'Weir Award'
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Nathan Chen earned himself a place on Sam Donovan's fashion podium for his sleek costume at the 2016 NHK Trophy. -Getty Images

It's been an interesting journey getting to know the fashion trends of each figure skater this season. The quirkier ones have finally worn me down, with some of the most bizarre costumes on display at the 2016 NHK Trophy.

Get ready to see some of the draggier and campier looks that had previously evaded the podium. I guess when in Japan, do as the Harajuku do.


Gold - Ryuju Hino (SP)

It's starting to get a little tight with all the repeats, but bless Hino for giving me something to look at. I love the organic, multi-dimensional lace detail that organically swirls around his body, which make his jumps and spins all the more beautiful.

Silver - Yuzuru Hanyu (FS)

This is how you Weir it. Hanyu displays gorgeous coloration and movement, with just the right amount of bling. The only reason this costume hasn't been featured before is that it pales in comparison to his short program gorgeousness.

Bronze - Nathan Chen (SP)

The talented Chen displayed a super-stylish little number that looks like it's plucked from a recent Burberry collection. I love the lace and solid blocking, which gives his costume a sporty, yet romantic look.


Gold - Satoko Miyahara (SP)

Part of the reason I don't mind the repeats in these competitions is that even though they tend to narrow down my options, they also give me an opportunity to reconsider looks that had previously given me pause. I didn't know what to make of Miyahara's pastel confection when I first saw it, but I love the display upon a second viewing. A truly unique and surprising color arrangement with a beautifully shimmering bodice make Miyahara's wardrobe a winner this time around.

Silver - Maria Sotskova (FS)

I'm apparently just in a soft pastel mood today. I love the lines around Maria's shoulders, and how dimensional and textural her piece is. The mock straps on the back of this costume are to die for as well.

Bronze - Karen Chen (FS)

This feisty black number perfectly complements her sassy little tango routine. I'd like to see a bit more fashion here, but it's hard to argue this near-perfect costuming choice for her free skate.

WEIR AWARD - Anna Pogorilaya (FS)

I'm embarrassed that I credited Elena Radionova with a Wagner Award at Cup of China for Pogorilaya's crazy prom dress of a costume, so I might as well double down on my efforts to get her to make a much-needed costume change.


Gold - Cheng Peng and Yang Jin (SP)

This definitely has as much to do with their choreography as it does their costumes, but the combination of the two is absolutely perfect. I love how odd and goofy the entire routine is, and the costumes are just the right kind of quirky to act as the cherry on top.

Silver - Sumire Suto and Francis Boudreau-Audet (SP)

I feel bad that this duo bombed in their home country, but man, if this isn't one of the best pairs costume coordinations I've ever seen, I don't know what is. I love that they act as a couture yin and yang, with a very subtle contrast of masculinity and femininity apparent in both looks. Well done.

Bronze - Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford (FS)

I'm just giving into the camp of these two. Yes, there were better costumes, but I've already featured them. Plus, in each competition Duhamel and Radford have appeared in, they've somehow managed to present themselves in this cotton-candy frivolity, and with the utmost professionalism and dignity.

Do I love these? No. Do they always manage to make me smile? Yes. And that's half the battle.


Gold - Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron (SD)

I had already rewarded these two with a gold medal for their free dance costumes at Trophée de France, but these costumes are just as gorgeous -- if not quite as poetic. The rich color contrasts between the gold and white of her look, and the deep, saturated blues of his make for the perfect renaissance painting come to life.

Silver - Emi Hirai and Marien de la Asuncion (FD)

This is something I've never quite encountered covering these events: I love both outfits individually, but I have no idea how they relate to each other. Hirai's serving some kind of Moulin Rouge-looking Eastern-influenced number, while de la Asuncion looks like a biker who decided to give figure skating a whirl.

I mean, I suppose there are some things we just aren't meant to understand, and as long as they look good, who am I to complain?

Bronze - Marie-Jade Lauriault and Romain Le Gac (SD)

I loved both sets of looks, and I like these stark and spunky outfits they wore to a Michael Jackson-choreographed number. I do wish, however, that the same starkness of the white in Le Gac's look was as present in Lauriault's dress. C'est la vie.