Finally, two years since the initial announcement, the Active team has seen the light, and baby…its red, white and British. At the Tower of London, Stella McCartney and adidas unveiled the MUCH anticipated collection that Team GB athletes will wear for all 46 events in the the upcoming 2012 Olympic Games in London. *Please note: this is the FIRST time a fashion designer has ever been tapped to conceptualize and create the uniforms for Team GB, so this is a huge deal for us here at Stylesight.
Sir Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton, Andy Murray and Jessica Ennis
The range of uniforms, from cycling to track, were inspired by a contemporary approach to the Union Jack flag, which McCartney told the press was “one of the most beautiful flags in the world”. As the creative director of the project, she was faced with a number of challenges that “pedestrian” designers are not traditionally exposed to. Technology and innovation must go hand-in-hand with the distinct “look” of these pieces — ensuring that above all, athletes not only evoke the aesthetic of sport, they are also capable of performing at the highest level.
Regardless of what the peanut gallery has to say — she is being run over the coals by British media for not using enough red (a color not only associated with the flag itself, but also linked subconsciously to athletic performance by sports psychologists), we think she hit the mark.
“I know I’m biased, but it really is one of the most iconic flags,” said McCartney of the design. “Working on the kit was, a lot of the time, not about being a fashion designer – it was about creating something for the nation and the Union Jack seemed like the right place to start. I was also aware of the fact that it’s something that might be overused in the build-up to the Olympics, in taxis, on cushions and mugs, so I wanted to do something different with it – but that was still respectful of its beauty. Actually, the colours of the Union Jack are similar to a lot of other flags and the athletes really wanted to feel identifiable as Team GB, so I just used different colours to say the same thing.” – Stella McCartney
She took into consideration what would work for FEMALE athletes, (like the belted number pictured below) not just the male competitors, something that is often taken for granted in the wide world of sports. And for us, the proverbial cherry on top…uber-ethical and environmentally-aware McCartney also included an eco-element to the equation as some of the uniforms (Andy Murray’s to be specific) are made from 100% post-consumer recycled PET.
Stayed tuned as we continue to ramp up our coverage of all things Olympic, its going to be an incredible summer! – Jeanine Pesce