(Photo above: U.S. ski team members Aaron Blunck, Maddie Bowman, and Devin Logan psyched to sport the new North Face gear for PyeongChang 2018 Olympic games.)
A simple design on the outside, an intricate personal touch on the inside -- that sums up the U.S. freeskiing team’s new Olympic uniforms in a nutshell.
As part of this week’s “100 Days to PyeongChang” countdown, The North Face unveiled the 2018 uniforms at a special event.
The colors are your traditional red, white and blue, but at the request of the athletes, the hues are more earthy tones, and the design has been simplified to a lot of solid single-tone designs.
On-hand for the unveiling were U.S. team members Maddie Bowman, Devin Logan and Aaron Blunck. All three of them had been consulted for feedback throughout the process, and all three approved of the final design -- which they themselves had not event seen until the morning of the unveiling.
“I was amazed,” Logan said. “Coming off of Sochi and being a part of that design, you don’t think things can get better, and The North Face seriously just blew themselves out of the water. The fit, the color difference, the amount of different pieces, it’s unbelievable.”
The number of different uniforms options is a key piece of the equation. Some skiers like traditional snowpants, others prefer overalls. Some like jackets, others might prefer to rock a vest or a hoodie when they’re in the halfpipe. A skier could even choose to ride in just a t-shirt -- a tall tee, to be exact -- like Bobby Brown did in Sochi. But either way, all the pieces work well together.
“It really suits each athlete and their own individual style,” Logan said. “But when we stand together, we look unified as a team. So everything’s perfect.”
The skiers had a surprise waiting for them when they first got to see the uniforms though. Unbeknownst to any of them, The North Face had reached out to the parents of Olympic hopefuls for slopestyle, halfpipe and ski cross to gather images from each athlete’s childhood. From that, a collage was created, which was turned into a fabric pattern. That fabric is used to line the inside of the jackets.
According to the designers, they were working off a motto: “Legacy starts here.” The idea was to remind athletes of their humble beginnings and enable them to take a piece of their journey -- and their teammates’ journeys -- with them to South Korea.
“That’s cool, and I think that speaks to really making it personalized and thinking about the athletes while they’re skiing,” said Bowman. “I’m so stoked with how it came out.”
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