Brighter colors, better fit make women’s golf wear fashionable

Fashion in women’s golf has changed as much as the perception of the women’s game itself.

Mary Lopuszynski, the senior director of U.S. Open merchandising, has been with the United States Golf Association for 20 years, and has seen the change firsthand.

“When I first started, women’s apparel was pretty much men’s apparel cut smaller, downsized, and it’s changed immensely over the years,” Lopuszynski said. “Now it’s more fashion colors, certainly not white. It’s a lot of different colors, and I think that’s what’s the best seller now.”

Color is not the only thing that determines what women look for in their golf fashion.

“The fit, it looks like you might not even see it on the golf course,” said Lopuszynski. “It’s more lifestyle.”

Makers of women’s golf fear have even extended their brands beyond the course.

“Even if some is appropriate to wear it on the golf course, like a collared shirt, you’ll probably see some pieces of that line that you wouldn’t see on the golf course because women are going from the course to the clubhouse, to the lunch and that kind of thing,” said Lopuszynski.

Even the men have adopted some of the more vibrant, lively colors.

“There are a lot of fresh, bright colors as well which did start with the women’s and moved over to men’s. I think men saw women wearing them and decided they wanted it too,” Lopuszynski said.

Like in most fashion lines, women have more options than men do. The USGA brought in some new lines and clothes just for the women’s week that weren’t offered during the men’s week.

Records are already being set at the Women’s Open, and the tournament hasn’t even started yet.

“Tuesday was our best sales day ever in U.S. Open Women’s history. We had our No. 1 day across the board with all the U.S. Women’s Open Championships through the years, so it was a fantastic day,” said Lopuszynski.

A big reason for the record sales is because of the back-to-back Opens.

“Usually at the Women’s Open the merchandise pavilion is much smaller. Because we have the large merchandise pavilion we’re able to offer more products and have a wider variety,” Lopuszynski said.

Fans have the opportunity to dress like the professionals.

Fan and shopper Charl Swindell, from Elizabeth City, likes the options shoppers are given at the Open.

“It’s all the same whether you are playing or watching,” said Swindell. “It’s become a lot less conservative. You have much brighter colors now. It’s not quite as plain and a lot more showy than it was five or 10 years ago. It’s a lot more fun.”

The change in fashion changes the appearance of the players, but also of the game for fans.

“I think it’s made the sport more approachable to everyone because they can see fashions that they would not wear otherwise,” said Swindell.

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