SBD/Issue 175/Sponsorships, Advertising & Marketing

Peek-A-Boo: Venus Wears "See-Through" Dress During French Open

Venus Williams' Outfit During Yesterday's
French Open Causing A Stir 

Venus Williams wore a "lacy, black dress with bright red trim" during her opening-round French Open match against Patty Schnyder yesterday, and the "black overlay material made the dress appear as if it was see through," according to Chris Chase of YAHOO SPORTS. The outfit made it appear as if Williams "was auditioning for a spot at a 19th century cabaret." She "didn't state whether she'd wear it again during the tournament" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 5/23). The AP's Howard Fendrich wrote the "corset-like get-up made her look as if she were ready to perform in a 19th century Parisian cancan chorus line." Williams said her look was "about illusion," which she said is "a lot of my motif this year" for her EleVen clothing line (AP, 5/23). In N.Y., John Branch wrote Williams garnered "sartorial attention with a self-designed black, lacy see-through outfit that might fit in at Moulin Rouge" (N.Y. TIMES, 5/24). ESPN's Mary Carillo said Williams "made a splash when she came on this court earlier today and she took off her sweater after the warm-up." Carillo: "What is that, a can-can situation?" ESPN's Mary Joe Fernandez: "I thought it looked like a Spanish flamenco dancer" ("French Open," ESPN2, 5/23). FANHOUSE.com's Greg Couch wrote, "This is going to cause a stir for tennis, which has broken free of its long-term stuffy image. Still, some corners of the game still aren't going to be comfortable with Venus trying to create the illusion of baring all. It will be interesting to see if the French Open attempts to fine her, or force her to cover up" (FANHOUSE.com, 5/23).

THE TIME IS NOW: Rafael Nadal is wearing a watch from designer Richard Mille during the French Open valued at $425,000, and Washington Post reporter Barry Svrluga said, “I like the Kia-image of this guy. I like the image of him throwing his body all over, kind of blue collar. I mean, he has got style but it is kind of a blue-collar style." Washington Post reporter Gene Wang: "What is going to happen if he is diving for a ball and the watch gets scratched on the court?" Comcast SportsNet’s Russ Thaler: "It is a strange repackaging of Nadal. They've been putting him in strange clothes with sleeves again" ("Washington Post Live," Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic, 5/21).

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