Monday, May 23, 2011

The History of the Scrunchie

On this blog, I've noted that gymnastics isn't the most highbrow and sophisticated of sports, especially when it comes to fashion. At the core of the sport's fashion backwards sensibility is the scrunchie, which is used by the majority of gymnasts to hold their hair of their faces. Frequently, the scrunchie is made to match the leotard a little too perfectly.

Since we (former) gymnasts and fans hold the scrunchie in the highest esteem, we should all watch "Interpreting the Scrunchie," a discussion of the hair item brought to us by DIS Magazine. The speaker, David Riley takes on a hilarious trip down scrunchie memory lane from the fall of Berlin Wall to Tiffany and Heathers to Sex and the City. He even noted that "there is a definite connection between the scrunchie and sports dominated by females. Gymnastics, figure skating, horseback riding. These are sports that couple intense athleticism with curious aesthetics. There is a dissonance between the athleticism, precision and training required and the naive lack of artistry, the chintziness of the costumes." (Check 5:34 in Part 3 to see if you can guess who the gymnast pictured is.)

Prepare to have your mind blown.

In Part 3, the discussion actually focuses on gymnastics. Riley even includes video of Shannon Miller's 1992 all around vault and asks, "What other hair accessory can do that?"

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