By  on February 22, 1994

Even if Tonya Harding is innocent of being involved in the attack on her rival, the experts agree she is guilty of fashion offenses -- the judges at the U.S. Nationals even took points off her score for the outfit she wore. She's unveiling a brand-new costume Wednesday when she hits the ice in Lillehammer, but chances are slim that she can one-up the Vera Wang originals that Nancy Kerrigan is wearing.

What's a girl to do? Richard Tyler, Betsey Johnson, Byron Lars, Cynthia Rowley, Victor Alfaro, Han Feng, and Maria Snyder came up with sketches of how Harding ought to look when she does her famous triple axle.

"Which is she?" Richard Tyler had to ask. "There's one that's sort of harsh, and one with a lot of teeth." Even though he said, "Innocent till proven guilty," Tyler went for prison stripes.

Betsey Johnson and Victor Alfaro put Harding in stripes as well, and Alfaro even suggested another sport. "I was sort of mean," he said. "But I hate her -- so white-trash." Johnson wasn't sure Harding should even be skating and posted warning signs.

"Leather and straps suit her perfectly," said Maria Snyder of her cross-your-heart bondage vision. "She's a tough cookie. I was going to have her holding a pool cue and a wrench, but she couldn't skate with those."

Cynthia Rowley equipped the skater with boxing gloves, a bulletproof vest -- for catching flak -- and tights with a "no comment" stripe on the leg.

But the making over doesn't stop there. "I'd give her a shaggy bob," said Frederic Fekkai. "One that would fly around but stay out of her eyes." He suggested a nude lipstick as well. " Make her fluffier -- soften her up."

"She's in desperate need of a manicure," said Stephen Knoll. "She looks like she's wearing Lee Press-On Nails." He said a short cut would highlight her eyes. "Her nose is not her best feature," said Knoll.

Brad Johns, Oribe's color man, thought Harding's turned-up nose was fine, but the bottled blonde had to go. "She's not so bad-looking -- she could be a pretty little Grace Kelly." He envisioned golden hair pulled up into twists, accented with a piece of gold jewelry. "I could even make her a little 14-karat baseball bat."

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