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2016-07-05 16:03:00 CET

More than sports - The power of fashion

Olympic uniforms are more than clothes – they can be the difference between gold and silver

Aleksandrs Samoilovs is swanning down the catwalk, the wind machine is blowing through his long hair. Aleksandrs is confident: “After our careers we are totally thinking about supermodels profession.”

Aleksandrs and his partner Janis Smedis are not usually walking on catwalks but on the sand on the FIVB beach volleyball World Tour. Luckily, the time for their careers to come to an end is still a while a way – as they proofed impressively with gold at FIVB Grand Slam Olsztyn and the fourth place at Poreč Major. But look at the video and you see: Latvia’s next top model is coming straight out of the sand.



Don’t worry, Aleksandrs and Janis did not take part in a casting show. As a team who will go to Rio de Janeiro in August, they had the honor to present the Latvian uniforms for the Olympic Games. The collection has been created by a team of 15 high-class fashion designers. Each athlete was measured and the outfits were custom made for each of them. Why this effort? it’s just clothes, you ask. Don’t underestimate the power of fashion. There have been already studies like “Why wearing red could help to win gold.”
 

Canada has a lot of red in its uniforms – and it’s nice to have red in the flag. Credit: InstagramCanada has a lot of red in its uniforms – and it’s nice to have red in the flag. Credit: Instagram

Only the best designers are allowed to work on Olympic outfits

“Creating the Olympic uniforms is a huge responsibility,” explains designer Evelyn Glebe, who is involved in not one, but three Olympic collection creations – for Poland, Latvia and Serbia. “We cannot afford that a silver medalist would have been able to win gold, if, for example, the seams spoiled the effect,” she said. Only the best designers are allowed to work on Olympic outfits. For team USA it will be  Ralph Lauren; Italy works with Giorgio Armani; Great Britain showed off its Stella McCartney collection and Felipe Oliveira Baptista, creative director of Lacoste, was in charge of the opening ceremony, podium and Olympic Village outfits for the French team.

Space silver, bright white and again: some red sparkles should help the German team. Credit: Facebook Page DOSBSpace silver, bright white and again: some red sparkles should help the German team. Credit: Facebook Page DOSB

Olympians modeled outfits most important factors are simplicity and style combined with traditional elements, the fabric must necessarily be breathable and comfortable as possible. “I love our dresses, the collection is compiled very thoughtfully,” said Karla Borger, who was allowed to show the German collection with Britta Büthe in April. At that time, the two athletes did not even know if they were definitely going to Rio. “It’s an extra motivation,” said Britta – and it worked for the bronze medalists of Poreč . Rio is getting closer every day. On Saturday the drawing of lots for the Olympic beach volleyball tournament will take place during Gstaad Major.

Latvians have big plans in Rio

For their clothes, Karla and Britta have to wait another two weeks. As reported, each athlete’s clothing comes with a grand costume for the Olympic Games opening ceremony, training and daily routine, as well as a wide range of accessories – a total in each set has 53 articles – 30 garments, 18 accessories and five pairs of shoes. It should be noted that this is the first time in Latvian history the costumes are specially designed for each Olympic team member individually, taking into account the characteristics of the human body. And don’t forget: they have red in it.

It’s not only about the athletes. The staff also needs uniforms: The color will depend on the worker’s job function: blue will be for Olympic officials, red will be for medical staff, yellow will be for operational staff, and finally, green will be for guest relations staff. Everything clear? Credit: Instagram antefidelisIt’s not only about the athletes. The staff also needs uniforms: The color will depend on the worker’s job function: blue will be for Olympic officials, red will be for medical staff, yellow will be for operational staff, and finally, green will be for guest relations staff. Everything clear? Credit: Instagram antefidelis

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