It’s been a turbulent start to the 2018 season when it comes to women’s tennis fashion, so doing my traditional Grand Slam fashion overview of the Australian Open will be even more interesting. Quite a few top players changed their apparel sponsors, there’s a clothing sponsorship mishap involving No.1 player Simona Halep and Adidas’ first-ever jumpsuit is having a roller-coaster ride this fortnight.
Let’s start with the shocking fact that top seed Simona Halep has no clothing deal, as her contract with Adidas expired on January 1st, and is wearing a generic red outfit purchased online from China!
The 26-year-old is surprisingly happy to have ordered the sewing of this outfit at the last minute, as she revealed in her pre-tournament interview:
Yeah, I sent a picture. Was a site, in China actually, and one of my managers helped me, and in 24 hours I had the outfit, and were perfect (smiling). I was lucky. I (found them) on Internet. Everything is on Internet now (smiling). I was a little bit stressed. I chose the model. But it’s plain, come on. Nothing special there. It looks good, in my opinion. I like it.
Halep kicked off the new season by winning the Shenzhen Open in this no-name kit and following that tournament it was rumored that Nike would become the Romanian’s new apparel sponsor, but unbelievably, the top-ranked player is still in her Chinese outfit.
Last year’s runner-up Venus Williams was eliminated from the draw on Day 1, so we didn’t get to see much of her new EleVen Aztec collection, recognizable for its geometric print that combines overlapping vibrant colors. The American sported the Aztec Love Tank and the Aztec Fly Skirt during her sole match at the 2018 Australian Open, while my favorite item in the line that “illustrates a women’s ability to conquer the world with a powerful sense of renewal” is the Aztec Pursuit Dress with halter neckline.
Adidas’ new teal w/yellow clothes have a casual fit, braided details and soft fabrics, reflecting the relaxing atmosphere of Melbourne’s beaches. The 2016 champion Angelique Kerber sported the lightweight Adidas Melbourne Burnout Tank, featuring loose armholes and a braided T-back design, and the 2-in-1 flowy Adidas Melbourne Skirt/Shorts, a sporty interpretation of the iconic culotte silhouette. The German’s shoes: Adidas’ Ubersonic 3 model in the color coral.
Jelena Ostapenko paired the shorts with the Adidas Melbourne Tank, which features a braided detail both at chest and at racerback, exposing a contrast built-in bra. Another style that captures the atmosphere of the Grand Slam’s host city.
The fashion masterpiece of this Australian Open is definitely the Adidas Melbourne Jumpsuit, whose top promoter was supposed to be Kristina Mladenovic, but because of the Frenchwoman’s early exit, the outfit got better exposure by Andrea Petkovic. When the German lost as well, Stella’s Caroline Wozniacki switched to the jumpsuit and the standout piece finally got a lot of well-deserved attention.
Before hopping in the jumpsuit, Caroline Wozniacki sported her original outfit, this Adidas Spring Stella McCartney Tank and the Adidas Spring Stella McCartney Skirt. The tank is a sporty, tight-fitting, sunshine-inspired design with integrated mesh and cute side zipper detail, while the white skirt is perfect for hot weather because of its color, curved perforated panel, UPF 50+ protection and moisture-wicking material. Caro’s shoes: Adidas Stella Barricade Boost.
Garbine Muguruza rocked the same outfit and also exposed the quarter-sleeve Adidas Spring Stella McCartney LS Top.
The first photos of Maria Sharapova‘s Australian Open dress showed it as a pink, short-sleeve design with black colorblocks, but just before the tournament started new photos surfaced — the black inserts were replaced with sheer, feminine sections and short sleeves got retracted to cap sleeves.
The Russian wore the barely rose version of the Nike Spring Maria Dress, while the design also exists in crimson bliss.
Elina Svitolina‘s Nike Spring Zonal Cooling Top has a classic shape, but that’s all that’s classic in this design, as at closer inspection you can see engineered mesh zones that provide ventilation, while stretchy material follows the movements of players and wicks sweat away. The Nike Spring Ace Shorts that complete the Ukrainian’s look are a modern 2-in-1 design that includes tight elongated shorts and soft outer knit shorts with side pockets.
Svitolina opted for crimson tint version of this athletic design, while Eugenie Bouchard chose the more eye-catching color lava glow.
Fila decided to go back to basics with the latest Heritage collection. Evergreen colors and archival design details such as stripes, color-blocks and pleats characterized the style of Fila-clad players Karolina Pliskova and Ashleigh Barty at the Australian Open.
Leaving Lacoste for Lotto, Alize Cornet worked the Spring Nixia Dress of her new clothing sponsor. The solid green dress features a zig-zag pattern on the front and racerback, which adds to the visual appeal together with the feminine ruffled hem.
Lacoste never wants to attract attention with busy and colorful designs, they rather stick to a traditional sporty theme as we can see in yet another navy dress worn Dominika Cibulkova. The dress is not absolutely bland — it has a dominant white block on the back, coordinated with the wide V-shaped contrast on the neckline.
Julia Goerges arrived at the Australian Open on the wings of three consecutive WTA titles, wearing the porcelain blue Asics Spring Athlete AO Dress. The stretch-construction item looks very simple at first glance, but when you look at it closely you can see that it has extended hem and Gel-Cool technology on the back, to name just a couple of its performance features.
Nicole Gibbs‘ New Balance Holiday Tournament Dress stands out with its white stripe binding at the neckline and armholes and racerback with a keyhole cutout in the shape of a vertical ellipse, which you can see in my detailed description of New Balance’s latest collection. Subtle design elemzents include an all-over dynamic print and dotted mesh double-layer skirt.
Monica Puig‘s Ellesse dress incorporates fire and sky colors, all of which perfectly match the sunny Melbourne days.
Mizuno‘s Kiki Bertens sported dark shorts with safety yellow contrast and a V-neck tank in the clover color, which also exists in a print version inspired by “Kasumi” (fog) blurry effect and color graduation to express air movement and circulation.
Australian Open fashion through the years:
- 2017: Edgy prints, layers, and retro styles hit Melbourne
- 2016: Crop tops, hightop shoes, sunny colors rule the Australian Open
- 2015: WTA fashion: Australian Open 2015 raises the bar!
- 2014: All eyes on the Australian Open fashion – a mix of hits, misses and designs that played it safe
- 2013: The WTA fashion side of the Australian Open
- 2012: The best of Nike, Adidas and Fila in Melbourne
- 2011: How do they look? Women’s tennis players at the first Grand Slam of the season
Kateryna Bondarenko‘s new Sergio Tacchini dress is a blue, red and white sporty design featuring a small side slit and a diagonal waist panel with blurred edges.
No longer endorsing Adidas, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova showed up in her new Sofibella attire. In these photos we can see the Sofibella Paris Volley Dress, a grey pleated design with black and electric yellow accents,and the Sofibella Paris Asymmetric Tank + Skirt. Both outfits provide UV 50+ protection.
Lauren Davis was another player enjoying a brand new clothing sponsorship deal, wearing a cute V-neck Diadora dress with nice triangular cutout on the lower back.
World No.119 Croatian Jana Fett, who had two match points in the second round against Wozniacki, promoted Martina Hingis’ Tonic apparel, in particular the fall collection’s Felixe Skirt featuring a sheer mesh trim at bottom hem.
Veronica Cepede Royg showcased a standout piece from the same Tonic collection, the royal blue version of the waist-defining Estrella Dress, characteristic for its deep V-shaped mesh insert on the chest and back.
Now that you have a complete Australian Open fashion overview in front of you, tell me which one is your favorite! My No.1 choice would be the jumpsuit, but I also love Ashley Barty’s separates, Stella’s designs, etc.
To see what the biggest WTA stars wore at the previous three Grand Slams, check out my US Open, Wimbledon and Roland Garros overviews:
- 2017 US Open: Haute couture designers & musicians in charge of WTA styles
- Wimbledon 2017: Rich textures and finishes make stunning performance dresses
- Roland Garros 2017: Stripes, paint splashes, tulle, diamonds, and other trends