Federer Brings Style To Tennis

Roger Federer of Switzerland pumps his fist after winning a point against Scoville Jenkins of the United States during the first round of the US Open tennis tournament in New York, Aug. 27, 2007. (AP Photo/Amy Sancetta)
AP Photo
Roger Federer is known for his precise style on the tennis court, and he was true to form at the U.S. Open on Monday: His royal blue polo-collar shirt matched the royal blue sweatband around his head, which matched the royal blue sweatband around his wrist.

By the way, Roger Federer topped American Scoville Jenkins 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 in the first day of the tournament.

But if you're a fashion fan as well, Federer is the man to watch. His personal style seems to mirror his tennis style. He is confident and classic.

"He's got it all going on," observed Men's Vogue editor Jay Fielden, who put Federer on the cover of his magazine this year. "He wears clothes that are emblematic of age and status. He does not dress too old or too young, too stuffy or too trendy. He's solid, smart and handsome," he added.

Federer's impact on amateur tennis courts can be seen in an increase in fashionably coordinated outfits worn by casual players -- a polo shirt and neat shorts instead of the T-shirts and bathing suits-as-shorts that some players had been wearing in recent years, Fielden said.

2The only athlete playing today that Fielden thinks rivals Federer as a style icon is golfer Tiger Woods, and Fielden notes that they actually have similar good taste.

Wearing more traditional tennis clothes seems to elevate Federer from the competition even before the first serve. In his opening match, there was a stark difference between his blinding white tailored shorts and Scoville Jenkins' loose black athletic shorts.

Jenkins had to stuff his thick gold chain into the rounded neck of his athletic T-shirt, which featured a graphic design in red on the sleeves against a white background.

For the most part, women have upstaged men in the world of tennis fashion. That's not hard to do with the likes of Maria Sharapova and Venus Williams.

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3Sharapova's tennis outfit, designed for her by Nike, was encrusted with crystals in a design inspired by the New York City skyline.

Williams, an aspiring fashion designer, wore outfits from her own new line of clothing during competitive play.

Top-seeded Justine Henin won her first match on Monday in a bold red outfit that also subtly captured the layered look so popular in street fashion.

Probably not since Andre Agassi was deemed worthy of a namesake fragrance by Estee Lauder has a male tennis player excited the fashion industry as much as Federer. In the days leading to the U.S. Open, Fielden co-hosted a dinner in the defending champion's honor with Vogue editor Anna Wintour.

Nike dresses Federer, and has borrowed an idea from its women's program, creating both daytime and nighttime looks for him. The combination of blue shirt and white shorts is for day. For evening, Federer will have an all-black outfit inspired by a tuxedo, complete with bonded satin tape down the legs of his shorts and warmup pants. The added shine will also be seen under the night lights on his shirt.

"Roger has an effortless style that is classic and iconic," Gill Brown, Nike's head of global tennis apparel, said in a statement. "His cool efficiency on the court carries over to the way he dresses and we played off that, especially in designing his evening on-court attire."