Newport, RI – From white Victorian tennis garb of the 1800s to Ted Tinling’s bold 1970s tennis dresses to custom kits from global brands worn by today’s stars, the International Tennis Hall of Fame’s extensive collection of tennis fashion showcases the evolution of tennis through the years and the unique personalities of its athletes.
As a result of a major organization-wide initiative to digitize the Hall of Fame’s overall museum collection, digitization of the fashion portion of the collection has recently been completed and is now available online for digital users to search and explore. Kicking off the first part of the collection online, the Hall of Fame is also launching a first-ever digital exhibit. Courting Fashion showcases the history of tennis fashion from the origins of the sport through present day.
“Our museum collection has carefully preserved the greatest stories of tennis history, and now through new digital experiences, we are glad to be able to take the museum collection out beyond the museum walls and vaults and to make these treasures accessible to fans around the world,” commented CEO Todd Martin. “Our new digital exhibits, starting with Courting Fashion, will provide engaging ways for fans to learn about tennis history. Our digital collection search will provide new opportunities for academic research, for distance learning programs, and for fans to interact with our collection without having to be present in Newport. We look forward to continuing to build new digital experiences like these that will further our objective to share tennis history globally.”
Scroll overs in the exhibit offer an opportunity to zoom in and explore fabrics and design detail up close, while an interactive timeline points out the fashion highlights of each era, such as Rene Lacoste’s crocodile jacket, Bjorn Borg’s iconic Fila looks, Billie Jean King’s Adidas blue suede sneakers, and Serena Williams’ recent US Open tutu look that was a couture collaboration between Louis Vuitton designer Virgil Abloh and Nike. The Courting Fashion exhibit is accessible attennisfame.com/courtingfashion
A search of “Chris Evert”, for example, reveals sneakers worn by the French Open great still caked in the red clay of Roland-Garros, Ellesse tennis whites from Wimbledon, and patriotic Fed Cup apparel. For users looking to explore the work of fashion icon Ted Tinling, who was largely responsible for introducing color to tennis apparel, a search of his name reveals everything from delicate white clothing with color embellishments to flashy sequined dresses and jackets that undoubtedly jazzed up tennis courts of the 1970s. The International Tennis Hall of Fame’s fashion collection is available for search on tennisfame.com/