On the Today Show this morning, Made in the USA label Ralph Lauren debuted the Team USA uniforms for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. According to the AP, every article of clothing was hand crafted and manufactured in the USA. Individual clothing for the competition may be made by a different label depending on sport, sponsership deals and technical aspects of the competition for performance. The North Face who is making the freeskiing uniforms has also stated the uniforms will be manufactured in the U.S. The XXII Olympic Winter Games (Sochi) 2014 begin on Friday, February 7 and end on Sunday, February 23.
Ralph Lauren Corp. received negative attention in the media and from politicians when it was discovered that some of the clothes for the 2012 London Olympic games may have been manufactured in China. Ralph Lauren has been supplying clothes for the Olympic athletes since 2008 when it took over for Canadian company Roots.
"We have worked incredibly hard as a company to go across America to find the best partners to help us produce the Olympic uniforms at the highest quality for the best athletes in the world," said David Lauren, the company's executive vice president of advertising, marketing and corporate communications.
According to the AP, "They used more than 40 vendors, from ranchers in the rural West to yarn spinners in Pennsylvania to sewers in New York's Garment District for the closing ceremony outfits unveiled Tuesday. The ensemble includes a navy peacoat with a red stripe, a classic ski sweater with a reindeer motif and a hand-sewn American flag, and a tasseled chunky-knit hat."
"As an athlete, the clothing means even more than you'd think. 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," figure skater Evan Lysacek said. "The moment you put on those first pieces of the American team clothes, you feel like it's real."
"What I hear from the athletes on this topic is that we go out in the Olympic Games and in every competition, we represent the United States of America. I might not know every citizen, but I represent them," Lysacek said. "The more people who are tied into the Olympic story, the closer to home each story hits."
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