The U.S. Olympic Uniforms Stir Up Serious Controversy

07/12/2012 at 03:00 PM ET

Olympics 2012
Courtesy Ralph Lauren

It’s going to be a fashionable 2012 Olympics! Ralph Lauren designed the U.S.A. Opening Ceremony Parade Uniforms, as well as a collection of village wear apparel, and debuted the looks this week.

The classic Opening Ceremony designs (left) — topped off with berets — are reminiscent of Lauren’s signature aesthetic, described by the brand as “classic silhouettes in a timeless palette of navy and white with pops of red.”

However, not everyone is pleased with the navy blazers, white bottoms and hats: Steve Doocy, host of of Fox & Friends, felt that the berets are too French — not American enough — even posing the question, “Why not a baseball cap?” Other news outlets, like the New York Post, found the outfits “too preppy.”

Adding more fuel to the fire, ABC News reported the uniforms were made in China. That prompted Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to go as far as to say the clothing should be burned. “If they have to wear nothing but a singlet saying USA on it painted by hand, that’s what they should do,” he said at a press conference.

So far Ralph Lauren’s reps have declined to comment on the situation, but the U.S. Olympic Committee did release a statement to the Wall Street Journal: “Unlike most Olympic teams around the world, the U.S. Olympic Team is privately funded and we’re grateful for the support of our sponsors. We’re proud of our partnership with Ralph Lauren, an iconic American company, and excited to watch America’s finest athletes compete at the upcoming Games in London.”

Tell us: Do you think it’s a big deal that the Olympic uniforms are made in China? Are the uniforms are too European? Or are they just embodying the classic style of Ralph Lauren? Vote below!

–Jennifer Cress


FILED UNDER: Athletes , Designers , Fashion
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Showing 108 comments

Jeanne Mullen on

Better to be tacky Yankee Doodles than European Dandies! Ditch the uniforms, go as individuals all carrying small US flags… that’s who we are!

USA all the way on

For those of you trying to make this political and blasting Fox News for comments made by Steve Doocy, note that DEMOCRAT Harry Reid called for the uniforms to be burned. Uniforms made in China should be the very last choice for the US Olympics team. Seriously ridiculous and I hope that there’s enough backlash that the decision is made to have the uniforms made in the US.

lww on

Forget the “european” fashion . . . they were made in fricking CHINA!!!! Way to go OC. “Made in America” is a hot topic in our country, and our Olympians are going to be trotted out in clothes made in China. Really?!?!?!?!

Dee on

They want us to make donations to the Olympic committee and they can’t have uniforms made in the USA to help create jobs? Right now, every bit helps!

Missy on

For those who are so worried about things being “American enough” — just be happy that it’s an American company and move on. If you don’t like it, sponsor an Olympian and pay for their uniforms yourself. Otherwise just say “thank you” to Ralph Lauren for helping out. PS – does no one remember that a Canadian company called Roots outfitted our Olympic team for not one but TWO Olympic games? The teams looked fabulous then and the team outfits look fabulous now.

elizabeth on

You don’t find with the economy the way it is that Made in China is a big deal? The US doesn’t manufacture anything anymore. That gig could have given alot of jobs to Americans. Task ordered and temporary but at least a job for awhile. It is a big deal! It is HUGE. Our economy is in the toilet and our own Olympic Committee can’t even contract out to an American company that actually employees Americans. HUGE!
Where is….of the people, by the people, for the people

BeachBum on

I am not implying that I could have created anything better, but these “uniforms” do not look like the uniforms of strong, competitive American men and women. The uniforms remind me of something that the Von Trapp family would have worn; they are not sophisticated or cool (IMHO) and they do not represent the rebellious and valiant culture of America.

Sassy on

Aren’t the U.S.of A. mostly of European heritage? English, Irish, Italian, German, etc? What’s the buzz?

elizabeth on

The Buzz is MADE IN CHINA.

I agree with an earier post, let them wear what they want and carry an American flag.

lulu on

Why? Money.

It all comes down to money. It always has and it always will.

$$$ is the answer here folks, it’s all these guys care about.

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