After last year's flap over the Ralph Lauren-designed athlete outfits revealed to be made in China, American participants in the Sochi Winter Olympics in February will be sporting clothes produced in the USA.
Tuesday marks 100 days until the start of the Sochi Olympics and to mark the occasion, NBC's Today brought on several Olympians to model a variety of apparel that the athletes will wear off the field of play.
Each article of clothing has been made in the United States and will bear the official "Made in the USA" label, avoiding any outrage over the outfits this time around.
Backlash ensued last year when it was discovered that the clothing made for U.S. athletes at the London Olympics had ironically been produced in China. It even got the attention from several members of Congress, including Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who said Ralph Lauren Co. should "burn them and start all over again."
There are fewer pieces in the Sochi collection due to the difficulty in finding enough facilities to produce the high number of items for both the athletes and the public, which was reportedly a reason production was done in China last year. However, despite any difficulties it may have faced last year, the company is employing the help of over 40 vendors from all over the country to make the athletes look sharp when they represent the United States 100 days from now.
"As an athlete, the clothing means even more than you'd think," 2010 Vancouver champion figure skater Evan Lysacek said. "The training, the sacrifices, the lifestyle, which is not glamorous and can be grueling and trying at times, all seem to come together in the moment when you realize you are part of the Olympic team. The moment you put on those first pieces of the American team clothes, you feel like it's real."