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Olympic Uniforms for the 2012 Opening Ceremonies

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Getty Images

When the London Olympics open on July 27th, the Parade of Nations will be our introduction to the 2012 athletes. What each team wears to the Opening Ceremonies is the stuff of much conjecture, drama, pride, gossip, and criticism. Let's see what some of the teams will be wearing.

Ralph Lauren

Yesterday, Ralph Lauren unveiled the U.S. team uniforms for the Opening Ceremonies. They look quite traditional and patriotic, but the oversized Polo logo screams "prep school." And then there's the beret, which has American fashion critics howling. But the biggest part of the upset over these uniforms is the fact that they were manufactured in China.

The Opening Ceremony uniforms for the Australian team were unveiled May 3rd during Sydney Fashion Week. The suits were designed by Sportscraft with shoes by Volley. The athletes say the clothing is very comfortable, which is important as they will be wearing them for at least seven hours on July 27th. The Australian athletic uniforms were designed by Adidas; you can see them in a video presentation.


Stella McCartney (daughter of Sir Paul) designed the British athletic uniforms for Adidas and came under fire for rendering the Union Jack in blue and blue instead of blue and red. However, they look pretty tame compared to the uniforms the volunteer "ambassadors" will wear during the games. In stark contrast, the uniform by Next that Great Britain's athletes will wear to the Opening Ceremonies is quite sedate.


The colorful yet slightly military Jamaican uniforms were designed by Cedella Marley, daughter of the late Bob Marley, in cooperation with Puma.


Giorgio Armani designed clothing for Italy's Olympic team, fifty pieces in all for each athlete (plus luggage), and that doesn't even count the athletic uniforms! Armani did not design the athletic gear. The dark blue and white doesn't broadcast patriotism, but the jackets and polo shirts have the words of the Italian national anthem embroidered on.

Bosco Sport

Spain's uniforms were designed by Bosco Sport, a Russian company that is also doing uniforms for Russia and Ukraine. This is not sitting well with Spanish citizens. As a sponsor, Bosco is supplying the uniforms free, and some say they are worth every penny.

Bosco Sport

The Russian company Bosco Sport also designed the Russian uniforms. At the fashion unveiling in June, Aleksandr Zhukov, president of the Russian Olympic Committee, predicted that his country would take home about 25 gold medals.


Unveiled in April, Germany's uniforms by Adidas sort the sexes by putting women in pink and men in blue, and neither color is from the German flag. The matching scarves are reversible.


New Zealand's uniforms were contracted to Kiwi firm Rodd and Gunn, but folks are upset that they were designed by Czech designer Irena Prikryl (who works for Rodd and Gunn in New Zealand), made of Italian textiles, and manufactured in Turkey, China, and Italy.

The uniforms for Hong Kong were designed by Kent and Curwen.


South Korea's sailor look is by Fila, designed to recall the 1948 Olympics, in which Korea celebrated its first Olympic participation after liberation from Japan. Note the argyle socks. On the right are athletic uniforms designed by Bean Pole.


With all the fashion designers in France, the French Olympic team curiously went to Adidas for their uniforms. The result was still understated high fashion.

See also: 2008 Olympic Team Uniforms.

How to Tie Your Shoes With One Hand, According to a Paralympian

Megan Absten lost her left arm in an ATV accident when she was 14, but the injury hasn't stopped her from doing extraordinary things like competing for the U.S. track and field team in the Paralympics. Nor has it stopped her from completing everyday tasks that most people need two hands for—like tying her shoes. After the shoe-tying methods she learned in physical therapy didn't cut it for her, she had to come up with her own one-handed trick. She shares her process in a new video spotted by Lifehacker.

First things first: Lay your laces on either side of your shoe. Next, use your hand to cross them and tuck one end through to make the beginning of your knot. Pin the end of one lace beneath the bottom of your foot to hold it tight, then pull the second lace up with your hand.

Now, you're ready to make your bunny ears. Create a loop with the free lace and pinch it between your thumb and index finger. Then, use your middle finger to grab the lace that you’ve been holding under your shoe. Circle this string around the loop, then push it through the opening to create your second bunny ear. Tighten the new knot by sticking your index finger and thumb in each loop and spreading them wide.

Watch Absten explain the process for herself in the video below. If you're feeling more advanced, she also demonstrates a second technique for you to try.

Once you've mastered those methods, try out these shoe hacks for happier feet.

[h/t Lifehacker]

2018 Winter Olympics By the Numbers: Which Country Was the Big Winner in Pyeongchang?

The closing ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics was held on Sunday, February 25, concluding more than two weeks of history-making figure-skating jumps and listening to curlers yell at each other. But if you're someone who tunes in to the Olympics only to see your country win, you may have been left feeling confused. There was no official winner announced at the end of the event, so how are you supposed to know which nation dominated the Winter Games? Judging solely by medal count, these are the countries that skied, skated, and slid their way to the top in Pyeongchang.

According to Bloomberg, Norway came out of the games as the most decorated country. The Scandinavian nation of 5.3 million took home 11 bronze, 14 silver, and 14 gold medals, bringing the total to 39. That makes Norway the biggest single nation winner at any Winter Olympics, breaking the prior record of 37, which was set by the U.S. at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Norway was represented by about half the number of athletes competing on Team USA, but it was bolstered by a few advantages—like long winters (making training for cross-country sports easier), universal healthcare, and a culture that encourages young athletes to play sports for the sake of play rather than for the sake of winning.

Germany tied Norway for the most golds with 14, but earned 10 silver and seven bronze medals, landing them in second place with 31. Canada ranked third with 29 medals overall, 11 of which were gold, and the United States came in fourth with a tally of 23 medals, including nine golds. The Netherlands, Sweden, South Korea, Switzerland, France, and Austria round out the top 10.

Teams used to spending a lot of time on the podium may strive for that top slot, but placing in any event is impressive. The majority of teams that competed went home without any medals to show for their efforts. Fortunately, they have until 2022 to prepare for the next Winter Olympics in Beijing.

[h/t Bloomberg]


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