Team USA has unveiled its uniforms for the rescheduled Olympic and Paralympic closing ceremonies, which are due to take place in Tokyo later this year.
Created by quintessential American designer Ralph Lauren, the all-white ensembles were announced Wednesday via a series of images showing model athletes staring heroically toward an unseen horizon.
But as well as being likened to astronauts’ gear
and the costumes of a 1980s high school movie
, the uniforms are also being subjected to another comparison online: with neighboring Canada.
Swimmer Kylie Masse models for Team Canada, and water polo player Ashleigh Johnson for Team USA. Credit: Canadian Olympic Committee/Ralph Lauren
North of the border, Olympics officials have taken an altogether more casual approach.
Though Canada is opting for relatively sporty garments for the opening ceremony and medal podiums, its closing ceremony jackets are made from denim and are strewn with graffiti-style writing and “spray-painted” maple leaves.
Designed by Hudson’s Bay and Levi’s, the jackets will be worn alongside a pair of the latter’s white jeans. The outfit is a “twist on the iconic Canadian tuxedo,” according to Team Canada’s website, referring to a nickname given to the oft-maligned “double denim” look favored by Canadians from Bryan Adams to prime minister Justin Trudeau
Team Canada said the jacket was “inspired by streetwear.” Credit: From Finn O’Hara/Canadian Olympic Committee
Although first unveiled last year, images of the jean jackets resurfaced on social media Wednesday, with social reaction ranging from “unique and fun
” to “cancel the Olympics
“Ahhh yes Canada going with the ’20-something girl at brunch’ lewk for the closing ceremonies this Olympics,” tweeted
sport journalist Jenna Harner. Writer and podcaster Dana Piccoli meanwhile wrote
: “Obsessed with Canada’s super casual Olympics outfits. Yes, wear that denim. Cover it with enamel pins. Gorg.”
Ralph Lauren’s newly announced Team USA designs also received a mixed response on social media. “Every four years Ralph Lauren does its best to dress up our greatest athletes in the most swagless outfits possible,” tweeted
Daily Beast reporter Max Tani.
Modeled by a variety of athletes, from wrestler Jordan Burroughs to water polo star Ashleigh Johnson, the crisp white uniforms come with navy blue collars and red drawstrings. The garments were made using “more sustainable materials and manufacturing practices” than in previous years, the brand said
It’s not the first time America’s Olympians will wear Ralph Lauren, which has been the official outfitter for Team USA since 2008. Nor is it the first time that Team Canada has worn denim to the Olympics — at London 2012, its athletes paired a jean jacket covered in patriotic patches with, naturally, khaki pants
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