Tennis proved to be the perfect sport during the era of social distancing and outdoor activities. Only 78 feet separated you from your opponent. Despite the return of close social ties, tennis' popularity has remained intact, especially in terms of fashion.
Tennis has a unique uniform when it comes to its uniform. It is possible to be fined at Wimbledon for not wearing all white (as Nick Kyrgios was this year for wearing white-and-red Air Jordan 1s). As a result of Serena Williams' black catsuit at the French Open in 2018, similar outfits were banned by the French Tennis Federation. The formality of the dress code may feel old-fashioned, but many newcomers to tennis are finding the traditional tennis staples to be particularly appealing off the court.
In this summer's Wilson Collection, the sportswear brand collaborated with Kith, a label that's helped define the current streetwear era. According to Joelle Michaeloff, vice president of design at Wilson Sportswear, Kith created a modern twist on classic prep. Taking traditional tennis silhouettes such as the tennis dress and the tennis visor, and reimagining them in a fashion-forward way, we created something unique and special. According to Michaeloff, Wilson customers wear tennis skirts and polo shirts both on and off the court.
Sportsy & Rich, founded by Emily Oberg, launched a new co-branded capsule with Prince on July 11. Tennis is a sport that can contribute to living a healthier, happier, and longer life, and knowing that an activity like tennis can contribute to that has been a central part of Sporty & Rich's brand ethos," Oberg explained. While maintaining the technical aspects of sportswear, the collection combines cotton loungewear with preppy staples such as tennis skirts and sweater vests.
For those who are adopting the look for everyday life, athletic innovation is evidently not the only appeal. It's interesting to see tennis style expressed through street culture, while also paying homage to the vintage history of the traditional sport apparel itself, illustrating generations' cross-generational evolution on and off the court.
Jewelry is another element of tennis style that is incredibly luxe. There's nothing quite as flippant as breaking a sweat while wearing a diamond necklace or bracelet. A tennis bracelet first emerged during a 1987 U.S. Open match when Chris Evert paused play after her diamond bracelet broke, sending it flying.
On social media, as users continue to develop the way they interact with followers, presentation has evolved from one of millennial-led polished perfection to a more Gen Z–driven unaffectedness by way of super-cropped photos and unaffected poses. It’s preppy and polished, but a sweaty post-play selfie is just as easy to capture as one perfectly posed pregame. When it comes to little white miniskirts and stacked diamonds, it really is love-love.