Sprinters' sinewy legs and the lithe limbs of divers might catch the eye during the 2012 Olympic Games in London, but, in all honesty, our focus will be mostly on their outfits. Though athletes' uniforms have ranged from unfortunate (think: cheesy '90s windbreakers) to mesmerizing (think: Flo-Jo nails), this year promises a flurry of both fashionable and, well, atrocious designs that we can't wait to see in action. The games begin on Friday, July 27, and will air on NBC through Sunday, August 12.
Ralph Lauren's Opening Ceremony Duds Ralph Lauren's aesthetic is All-American, clean-cut, and preppy. So it's no surprise that his opening and closing ceremony wardrobe for Team USA rings true in the red, white, and blue department. The outfits are WASP-y in a Katharine Hepburn, let's-go-sailing, kind of way, inspired by the last time the US competed in England for the 1948 games. (Russia also went retro, to a mixed reception.)
Though the floppy, sterotypically French hats top off the men's and women's looks, berets are only the beginning of the designs' identity crisis. The bigger issue? They were made in China, instead of on the squad's home turf.
Stella McCartney's Uniforms for Great Britain Stella McCartney is the first designer to create Team Great Britain's Olympic uniforms (or, as they say across the pond, "kits"), but judging by their clean lines, sleek silhouettes, and Union Fack theme they're one of the best looking collections we'll see during the international competition. McCartney teamed up with Adidas, a brand she's worked with over the years to create compelling sportswear, for the line.
The only major complaint circulating? Critics say the pieces are too blue and lack the bright red boldness synonymous with the Jack. Our take? The team looks unified and refined -- a considerable feat when you consider how Spain's uniforms turned out. Hint: They're a patterned puke-fest.
Nike's Track and Field Catsuits If these uniforms by Nike were embellished with Spanx technology, we'd be tempted to slink around in them. Instead of waist-cinching technology, the suits, made from recycled plastic bottles, were engineered to make runners more aerodynamic. ABFAB at the Olympics
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Since we're more likely to imbibe a cocktail or two while watching sporting events than physically attempt the feats, we'll take a little hilarious inspiration from Eddy and Patsy ofAbsolutely Fabulous
. Who better to serve as unofficial Olympic mascots than the fashion-obsessed duo? The 20th anniversary special episode centers on the games -- or, at least, what the lazy lushes are up to while the games gear up. It aired on BBC America and will be available for purchase via iTunes and Amazon.