Editor's note: Art and design critic Gaile Robinson, an admitted Olympic fanatic, is acting as official armchair commentator on the Star-Telegram blog "London Calling: A Texas take on the Olympics," and she's not holding anything back until the flame goes out.
After years of grueling practices, hours upon hours of workouts attending to the finest details of perfection that ultimately take them to the Olympics, the athletes can be blind to the subtleties of fashion accessories and the polish of appropriate hair and makeup.
Good uniforms or lack of them helps, too. Performance counts, but so does presentation. Some hits and misses so far:
Missy Franklin chooses simple, elegant pearl studs that add a sheen of elegance when she dresses for her races in a knee-length black compression suit and a stretchy rubber bowl for a hat. Remember, pearls are always appropriate.
Beach volleyball is very, very popular, but after the 55-degree evening on the first night of matches, spectators had to wonder if the attraction is for the sport or the skin show. The Australian women's team dressed like it was laundry night at the dorm in leggings and T-shirts overlaid with bra tops. It was a rather disturbing fashion choice. The Olympic photographers must have thought so, too, as there were only four photographs of the Australian team when usually there are hundreds of photographs from each match.
Blame it on Rio
Female gymnasts are still nailing their hair to their heads with stupid silver hair clips. If you need more than two to control your hair, you need a different haircut, and that is being generous -- on the world stage you shouldn't have clips in your hair. One Brazilian gymnast was seen with more than 10 clips stuck to her head. She tried to deflect notice from her hair hardware by using thickly applied eye shadow in blue, green and yellow. Neither worked; together, it was a fright.
Right in stride
The equestrians have one of the most sublime uniforms. The carefully tailored black jacket, crisp white shirt, fawn colored breeches and tall boots look as good on women as they do on the men. Also, using a horse as an accessory is a proven chick magnet.
Once athletes compete, they often get the five Olympic rings tattooed somewhere on their body. Not large -- just very subtle.
It's a tattoo that is earned, and one of the few tattoos that seems warranted. Are there any parents alive who would object to their child getting this tattoo if he or she made it to the Olympics?
Any posers out there who have a ring tattoo just because you support the Games? Uh, no.
Gaile Robinson, 817-390-7113