The Olympic swag keeps coming for Team USA.
Athletes will have a chance to don their latest set of gear at the Beijing Olympics Closing Ceremony this Sunday.
Like any Olympic feat, creating the outfits for the Games is a team effort, with contributions being made from Kim Kardashian’s Skims line to Volcom, who provides gear specifically designed for snowboarders. However, the honor of designing outfits for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies has belonged distinctly to Ralph Lauren since 2008 -- the last time the Olympics were held in China.
The Team USA Collection by Ralph Lauren -- which debuted on the Today show at the end of October -- features 53 men’s items, 45 women’s items, 22 boys items and 13 girls items.
Among these are an entire set of clothes and accessories specifically designed for the Closing Ceremony. The big ticket item -- a plaid puffer.
Listed at just under $1,800, this jacket steals the show. It has a navy base with a red checkered front and an American flag patch attached on the left sleeve. Athletes will pair this with a wool turtleneck that features both the American flag and the Olympic rings across the front.
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The remainder of the outfit includes fleece pants, red winter boots and an abundance of accessories to complete the look.
All these layers and more will be necessary to keep athletes warm come Sunday when the temperatures are expected to dip below freezing in China at the start of the Closing Ceremony.
These outfits not only reflect the spirit of Team USA but also the goals of the Olympic movement, namely prioritizing sustainability as one of the pillars of Olympism. Ralph Lauren reportedly partnered with reprieve -- a performance fiber made from recycled materials -- to produce this collection.
For the second straight Olympics, only a handful of athletes are expected to remain in Beijing come Sunday.
According to the IOC’s Olympic Playbook, in an effort to reduce the spread of Covid-19, it is recommended that athletes leave within 48 hours of their final competition unless they opt to participate in the Closing Ceremony. This is an adaptation of a rule established for the Tokyo Olympics that required all athletes to leave the host city within that 48 hour window.
While their absences may be felt, they’ll still get the full set of gear.