Olympic Bling

Hopefully you will spare me one more post on the Summer Olympics and dress. Today I’d like to talk jewelry.

Maybe you noticed that runner Sanya Richards-Ross ran the 400 meter and took to the medal stand to receive her gold medal wearing double-C logo earrings by Chanel. You can see the large studs in the photo above.

And maybe you heard that swimmer Ryan Lochte has a $25,000 grill, seen above, and that he tried to wear it on the medal stand only to be told no. Some reports say that because the grill isn’t part of the U.S. uniform, he wasn’t allowed.

I’m still trying to figure out why Richards-Ross’ double-C Chanel earrings were allowed on the medal stand, but Lochte’s grill wasn’t. Both are types of jewelry — earrings are more traditional, but a grill is definitely a form of jewelry worn in the mouth over the teeth.

The double-C logo is very identifiable, and Chanel is not an Olympic sponsor. If you are going to allow such a recognizable piece of jewelry on Richards-Ross’ ears on the medal stand, then why can’t Lochte wear his grill, which has no logo, on the stand?

I do, however, think Lochte’s grill is a bit lame and would have been embarrassed to see him on the stand with it in. Could this be why he wasn’t allowed to wear it? Is there someone on Team USA determining what kind of jewelry is in good taste and what isn’t? Does it have something to with class? — Chanel is a brand that represents the upperclass, while grills are popular among rappers, many of whom have rose to fame from poor communities.

I’m still trying to sort this out, so if you have any ideas or information, please share.


  1. Heiress Emma says:

    In the Australian media, the mouth grill was treated as a bit of a joke – they took it as an opportunity to quietly snigger at the flashy USA bling and how ridiculous it was. I’m very glad they didn’t let him wear it on the medal podium – I imagine it would be something he’d look back on in 5 years and think, “Why didn’t someone tell me I looked like a royal fool?”. But, I can’t help you out with supposing why he was told no, other than that I think your theory is right, of earrings being traditional and grills being a bit whacky.

  2. Kinzie says:

    Hmmm. I hadn’t thought of it that way. I’m glad they didn’t let him wear it, because it looked STUPID. But I had heard the same thing as you- that it wasn’t part of the uniform so it wasn’t allowed. Interesting that the Chanel earrings slipped by.

  3. Trillium says:

    I was surprised to see many of the US swimmers wearing earring during their events. I remember swimmers being DQ’d for wearing any jewelry at all (rings, bracelet, necklace, earrings) at high school meets.

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