Talk of Shaun White at the Winter X Games this year may have included as much about his outfit as his snowboarding skills. White hit the SuperPipe clad in a fitted leather jacket and skin-tight jeans; a piece from his women’s clothing line for Burton. Once the tweets started flying, White said he was just showing off some of his gear that mimicked everyday streetwear.
His newly adapted style may be the start of a revolution as Ride Snowboards, a higher-end snowboard and clothing line, modeled tight pants at this years SIA Snow Show. The fashion show displays clothing from manufacturers for next season’s retail outlets.
In the past snowboarder styles have leaned towards boxier, baggy clothing with an emphasis on self-expression through bright colors and funky designs. According to Jeanine Pesce, an editor of the fashion and design industry’s premier trend forecasting service Stylesight, the tight-fitted clothing that reveals a slimmer silhouette is showing up “a ton” among snowboarders following the 2011 Winter X Games.
But style doesn’t start with a jacket and end with snowpants; its found on gloves, boots, board designs, even hats and goggles. And it’s not just for boarders, skiers know how to rock the slopes as well.
Corinthia, located at Mount Snow in West Dover, VT, is the East’s only all-park mountain face. Skiers can often be found doing a freestyle run on the main lift’s half pipe trail; not uncommon is the neon-colored and often baggy clothing hanging from their frames. More often than not, they’re male skiers who would rather hit jumps, rails and pipes than run through all natural terrain. However, skiers are a little bit outnumbered at Corinthia, with a ratio of about five snowboarders to one skier. Could there be substantial evidence that terrain park users are more likely to be snowboarders? Maybe, but that thought is based on two Sunday outings to West Dover in March, which can’t speak for terrain parks across the country.
The evolution of ski wear has been interesting to watch, as one-piece bright colored suits made their way to glittery belts and rediculous faux-fur headbands in the 80s, a style that seems to be creeping back within the older population of both male and female skiers. Snowboarding was rare during this period of time, which makes it difficult to conclude whether or not snowboarders would have rocked the same outfit. However, there has been plenty of time in the past five years to see if the onesie comeback finds its way to snowboarders. Speaking only from personal observation, boarders have never embraced the onesie fasion.
The past 10-15 years has seen a new era building momentum; one that has been dominant in groups under the age of 30. It would be difficult to separate skiers and snowboarders in this group, if only because styles and high-fashion can be worn and embraced by all on the mountain. According to this year’s SIA Snow Show, last year’s plaids and in-your-face blues, limes and purples are being left behind for more subdued colors like red-wine, creme, banana yellow and mauve. Cooler colors can be found in turquoise, cobalt and navy blue.
Check out the video below to see what one skier and snowboarder have to say about self-expression through clothing at Mount Snow in West Dover, VT.