Figure Skaters’ Costumes, Artistry Wins Them Celebrity-like Endorsements

SAITAMA, JAPAN — More than a dress, figure skating costumes are an opportunity to communicate a larger concept with viewers and judges — strategically designed to complement a routine’s music and emphasize its theme. At Friday night’s ISU World Figure Skating Championships — held at the Saitama Super Arena — this meant spandex, rhinestone-laden interpretations of famous stage works such as “Carmen,” “Chicago” and “Romeo & Juliet.”
Skating enlists an extreme athleticism that sees athletes hurtling themselves three, and now increasingly four, rotations into the air and spinning so rapidly that their body encounters multiple G-forces. The sport is unique, however, in that visual presentation plays an equally important role in an athlete’s success, placing costumes in a vital position.
Skating’s athletic romance and expressive fashions have helped create a significant fanbase for the sport in countries including Russia, South Korea and Japan — where figure skaters are becoming household names and are beginning to appear in high-profile campaigns for major beauty and fashion brands.

Elizabet Tursynbaeva 
KIMIMASA MAYAMA/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock

“I think what differentiates skating from other sports is that it’s also not only about athleticism. There is an artistic component, which complicates things enormously,” said designer Vera Wang, formerly a nationally ranked skater, who also

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Street Signs: Moscow’s Coolest Skaters Have a New Place to Shop

MOSCOW — Signaling the vibrancy of the local skateboard scene — and a rebounding Russian retail market — upstart brand Paccbet has opened its first freestanding store here.
The 1,600-square-foot unit is called Oktyabr: the name echos the Oktyabrskaya subway station where Moscow skaters congregate to improve their skills – and check out each others’ gear – under a monumental statue of Lenin.

A view of the new Paccbet store 
Courtesy Photo

Paccbet founder Tolia Titaev, 24, hopes Oktyabr – which he bills as the first multi-brand skateboarding store in Moscow – will become another key meeting point for the local scene. In addition to Paccbet, the Russian word for sunrise, the unit carries such brands as F—ing Awesome, Dime, Awake, Stussy and Carharrt. Oktyabr also carries Russian Absurd, which Titaev cooked up with local skating hero Gosha Konushev, who will lead a group of boarders sponsored by Oktyabr.
“I always wanted to do something for Russian skateboarding. I wanted to tell the world that the Russian scene is strong and our youth is buzzing and is willing to do things,” said Titaev, who established Paccbet in 2016 under the tutelage of his friend Gosha Rubchinskiy, the new ringleader of the Russian fashion scene and

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Figure Skaters Adam Rippon and Mirai Nagasu Are Ready to Take on Dancing with the Stars

Adam Rippon, Mirai Nagasu, 2018 Winter OlympicsOne of the 2018 Winter Olympics’ best friendships has made its way to Dancing with the Stars.
Figure skaters Adam Rippon and Mirai Nagasu will both compete in the shortened…

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New York City Skaters Lash Out at Supreme and Louis Vuitton Collaboration

Supreme might have unveiled its MetroCard design last week to mass fanfare, but another of its collaborations is proving to rile the brand’s skater base.
Controversy continues to ripple through New York’s Lower East Side skate community following Louis Vuitton’s fall men’s runway show in Paris last month — when the French house unveiled its collaboration with Supreme.
In teaming with the skate-oriented streetwear label, Vuitton will release a collection heavy on accessories — including skater-type ephemera. The collection’s reported high price tags have left Supreme’s original base of skaters nonplussed, with many exclaiming that they feel “exploited” in seeing their tribal garb fed through the luxury assembly line.
According to streetwear blogs, it’s expected that a skateboard carrier from the collection — sold with skate deck and accessories included — will be priced at $ 54,500. Louis Vuitton did not offer comment on the estimated price.
WWD rode the D train down to the Lower East Side, and spoke with a gamut of skaters — at an LES skate park, skate shop and skate bar.
“I think it’s stupid as s–t,” an anonymous thirtysomething skater said of the collection at the Lower East Side watering hole, Forgtmenot. Most skaters who spoke with WWD requested anonymity for fear of

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