spotted in the city: rafa's nike display + maria for cole haan

The window’s his. There would be no US Open title for Rafael Nadal, but he did reign as king of Niketown on 57th Street in Midtown Manhattan for most of the Open. We love the picture-framed outfits which you can see better after the jump. Below: Maria’s Cole Haan collection advertises on an 8th Street subway stop downtown.

One more Rafa meets Niketown after the cut.

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reminder: maria's cole haan flats come out today

Fashion’s Night Out: Just a reminder that Maria Sharapova‘s special edition Air Bacara Flats — part of her collection by Cole Haan, will drop today in select stores. These shoes were inspired by Maria’s Nike kits from this year’s U.S. Open.

Folks can snap up the Bacaras for $148 at Cole Haan SoHo and select other Cole Haan stores in New York (Columbus Circle, Flatiron, Madison Avenue, Rockefeller Center), Los Angeles (Century City), San Francisco, Chicago, Coral Cables and colehaan.com.

In addition, ten lucky guests at Cole Haan SoHo’s celebration of Fashion’s Night Out will have the opportunity to purchase a pair of signed special edition Maria Sharapova by Cole Haan Bacara ballet flats.

Bonus: Participating Cole Haan FNO locations, along with colehaan.com, will offer a special promotion for FNO: enter to win a new pair of Cole Haan shoes every month for an entire year! More info here.

FNO LA: For those of you in L.A., check out the evening’s plans here. We’re planting ourselves near Melrose/Robertson to start off the evening!

(image courtesy of Cole Haan)

inspired by her us open kits, maria redesigns some flats

Sheer beaut: The on-point Maria Sharapova wore Vera Wang to the party celebrating the launch of her Fall 2011 Collection by Cole Haan, held at the company’s SoHo store this past Thursday.

Maria accessorized the sheer white dress, plucked from Wang’s fall runway collection, with some Tiffany jewelry (love that necklace!) and of course a bag and shoes from her CH line.

The event also served as the preview for two special editions of CHMS Air Bacara Ballet Flats; these ones were inspired by the colorways of Maria’s Nike-designed U.S. Open day/night dresses. “The Air Bacara Ballet is one of my favorite Cole Haan styles within my collection,” Sharapova said in a press release. “We wanted to do something fun and special inspired by my love of fashion and sport.”

The day shoe comes in a feather grey/neon pink combo — crafted with perforated leather — while the night ballet pairs black perforated suede with a bold chickadee yellow. Note that signature corset-lace detailing at the heel.

On your mark: The limited edition ABFs ($148) will be available for sale on September 8 at Cole Haan SoHo, and select other Cole Haan stores in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, and Merrick Park. The rest of the Fall 2011 collection’s already available. (Check out colehaan.com to see the goods. Our fave? The peep-toe monk-strapped ankle boot from the Alexis line.)

Bonus: See how Maria’s Vera Wang dress looked on the runway, plus the rest of the super-chiffoned VW Fall 2011 collection — all at style.com.

Looking forward: TSF’s resident bracketologist Chris has Maria making it all the way to the finals of next week’s U.S. Open before falling to Serena. Do you agree with his prediction?

(event photos by Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com; product images courtesy of Cole Haan)

sharapova survives scare

Maria Sharapova‘s trying to consolidate that title win in Rome, but not without trouble: she had a slight hiccup in second round while facing French wildcard Caroline Garcia, going down a set and 1-4 before grinding out the 3-6, 6-4, 6-0 victory. Up next for Masha is Yung-Jan Chan of Taiwan. (Draw: RG Women’s Singles)

Meanwhile, her eponymous accessories collection at Cole Haan dropped a blue nubuck version of the Air Bacara flats. (Flashback: Maria’s Cole Haan Spring 2011)

Buy: Air Bacara Ballet by Maria Sharapova by Cole Haan, $138, colehaan.com.

And speaking of her off-court dealings, one of TSF’s favorite writers, Eric Wilson, sates his Masha fa(n)scination with this article in the NYT Style Section.

(match photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images; Air Bacara image courtesy of Cole Haan)

masha: we can see you!

Here’s Maria Sharapova at last night’s players’s party for the upcoming Sony Ericsson Open in Miami. Perhaps she’s using the outfit’s bright colors to wash away the memory of her semifinal loss at the IW semis — she only managed three games — to eventual champ Caro Wozniacki? Whatever her excuse, DtL isn’t buying it.

For the curious: Masha’s wearing a sheer striped top from Cynthia Rowley, a floral skirt by Chris Benz, and — of course — shoes and a bag from her own Cole Haan collection.

Buy: Cynthia Rowley Invisible Stripe Sweater, $230.

(image by Mike Ehrman/Getty Images)

maria's spring 2011 for cole haan

More love to our favorite Russo-American: We would never have thought of uttering “Maria Sharapova” in the same breath as Dossier, Theophilus London, Bureau V, Kate Neckel, and Bamboo Bike Studio — yet here we are. She’s been added by Cole Haan to a list of makers, creators, and innovators that they’re spotlighting throughout the spring.

Browse: Check out a some adorable pictures of Maria (she should smile more often!) plus a mini-Q&A that looks into her creative process here. From her Spring 2011 Cole Haan collection, our faves: of the bags, the metallic Viola Tote, which she was also using for practice sessions at Indian Wells (image); and of the shoes, the strap-happy Air Jasmine OT Pump.

Bracket: At this week’s BNP Paribas Open, Masha bounced back after a surprisingly tough opening round match (vs. Anabel Medina Garrigues) to beat Safina, Rezai, and Peng Shuai. She now faces top seed Caroline Wozniacki in the semis; the winner plays Bartoli. (Draw: Women’s Singles.)

(photo via colehaan.com)

short balls: dent says farewell to tennis

Taylor-made: Taylor Dent announced his retirement from pro tennis this week, following a 12-year career that saw him reach as high as no. 21 in the world. Dent, now 29, won four career titles but saw his progress cut short due to a high volume of injuries. He returned to the tour over the last 18 months after being out for much of 2006 and 2007, amassing a 12-19 record in 2010 and a ranking of no. 85. We’ll miss ya, Mr. Serve-and-Volleyer. TSF Vault: The Dent Diaries.

The way of the ladies: Ana Ivanovic ended 2010 unlike any recent ending she’s had to a season, winning the title in Bali with three impressive victories and vaulting herself back into the top 20. Ivanovic won 13 of her final 15 matches of the year with her title in Linz. Ravi Ubha gave Ana the thumbs up to become a major Slam contender in 2011 or 2012, while giving the exact opposite forecast for countrywoman Jelena Jankovic (who finished 2010 6-11). Ubha had his crystal ball out for the WTA contingent on ESPN.com. The WSJ Weighs in: The Wall Street Journal had a piece last week on how – just how? – Caroline Wozniaki took the top spot in tennis.

A geographical version of ‘Whatever happened to…?’ Now that Dent and Elena Dementieva have said farewell (as has Martin Damm to coach Ryan Harrison), we got to thinking about some former (and current) pros and wanted to check in on see where folks have landed. Dustin Brown, our favorite wearer of the neon-color palette, is taking his allegiance to Germany from Jamaica. The top 100 player cited a lack of funding for the move. His mother is German. The Uberoi sisters, Shikha and Neha, both former top 200 doubles players, have made the return to the academic world and are at Princeton finishing their undergraduate degrees. Both sisters contribute on their dual web site, and recently Neha had an entry up on her own blog about an interview with Venus Williams in her journalism class, taught by the one-and-only L. Jon Wertheim. Picture this: Ana & Enrique taking it easy in Hawaii.
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Before the jump: We wanted to wish the hard-working and always-on-top-of-a-story Aaress Lawless the best of luck as she departs from her operating gig at OnTheBaseline.com. OTB will be managed now by Justin Pohn, and will continue to be the source of all things women’s tennis.

maria sharapova at cfda vogue fashion fund (l.a.)

Before or after? After yesterday’s news, everyone was looking back at photos from this past Tuesday’s CFDA Vogue Fashion Fund show at the Chateau Marmont in L.A. (where finalists Joseph Altuzarra (<3 <3 <3 <3), Robert Geller, Pamela Love, Prabal Gurung, Billy Reid, Christian Cota, Moss Lipow, Loden Dager, Gregory Parkinson, and Eddie Borgo showed off their collections) to see whether Maria Sharapova was already wearing an engagement ring from fiance Sasha Vujacic. Alas, no bling.

Still, Maria looked radiant in her Cacharel floral print dress — paired with those Cole Haan Air Swan peep-toe booties — and bangles from M.C.L. by Matthew Campbell Laurenza. (She hasn’t been shying away from the bright colors, eh?)

More: View past Cacharel shows at NYMag.com; see the company’s site here.

(image via Getty Images; bangle info via CelebrityFashion)

players manage balancing act while prepping for nyc’s big show

Kim Clijsters threw out the first pitch after meeting the Mets team in Queens on Friday in New York. A day earlier, she was the USTA’s guest of honor at the draw ceremony (AP photo via Yahoo! Sports).

RalphLauren.com pulled out all the stops on Thursday afternoon for an event featuring Venus Williams, in which Venus took questions from online submissions from around the world in a live clinic. At the Sportime Randall’s Island tennis center in New York, Venus was on court for the first time in a public setting since her eyebrow-raising loss to Tsvetana Pironkova in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon. But instead of thwacking errors and a look of confusion, Venus was all smiles and tennis knowledge in the clinic, which was hosted by the British TV personality (and former player) Annabel Croft.

Venus, who is the no. 3 seed at the US Open and one of the favorites though she hasn’t been on tour in two months, talked fitness, forehands and gave plenty of tennis tips from her 26 years of experience on the court. The event was hosted by Ralph Lauren and Mercedes Benz, based on RL’s homepage for viewers to log in and watch live while Venus answered questions relayed by Croft. (Watch a full replay of the clinic here or click on the image after the jump.)

“It’s good for me to remember the basics when I’m about to play a big tournament,” Venus said, referring to the Open. Venus partnered with Ralph Lauren in the design of the dress she wore, a white number emblazoned with the logo of Eleven, Venus’s clothing line.

Guests were greeted with sweet mint tea, pistachio ice cream sandwiches and caramelized popcorn on the upper deck at Randall’s Island, which hosts the New York Sportimes during the World Team Tennis seasons. Male models clad in red Ralph Lauren polos dished out the goods as Venus strode through the crowd on her way to hair and make up (this was a live, online clinic, after all).

The clinic was a part of a myriad of events happening in New York this week, which all lead up to the big show at Flushing Meadows starting on Monday.

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maria sharapova contributes her two cents

Interview magazine and Cole Haan threw a party to celebrate the launch of Maria Sharapova‘s latest collection, designed in collaboration with the footwear company.

The event, held last night at the New Museum’s Sky Room, also featured an auction of pieces by artist Todd Selby to benefit Common Cents. Selby, who photographed the campaign for this collection, created watercolors of a penny, a taxicab, a portrait of Maria, plus paintings of ballerina flats and the Air Swan sandal — both shoes that feature in this, Maria’s latest crack at designing shoes.

Buy: Dress by Suno. Air Swan sandal, $198; small Swan Crossbody, $228; both at colehaan.com.

(Maria image by Chance Yeh/PatrickMcMullan.com courtesy of Cole Haan)