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Olympic fashions go for the gold

Back when a chap named Bruce Jenner was the face of the Montreal Olympics, athletes had limited shots at stardom. The Wheaties box, maybe a trip to Disney World — these were the options, usually after the Olympics, and generally only if they won.
Now 40 years later, the road to Rio is packed with sports stars. Olympians are celebs in their own right, endorsed by various brands and seen more and more before the Olympics. You’ll spot them in ad campaigns (gymnast Aly Raisman is flipping — literally — for Aeropostale), on magazine covers (decathlete Ashton Eaton shares a javelin with Gigi Hadid in this month’s Vogue) and on the “Today” show (yep, there’s wrestler Jordan Burroughs and swimmers Ryan Lochte and Haley Anderson modeling Ralph Lauren’s closing ceremony gear).
Ralph Lauren has been an official outfitter of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic teams since 2008, causing a bit of a stir in 2012 when it was revealed the gear was made in China. (This year’s preppy attire is all made in the United States.) Stella McCartney has also been outfitting Great Britain’s Olympians for years. In fact, the Olympics these days is like some “Project Runway: Jock Edition,” with Giorgio Armani (for Italy), H&M (Sweden) and this year edgy label DSquared2 (Canada) all dressing athletes — with versions available to us flabby consumers.
The goal is to whip up enthusiasm for the games — and sell merchandise, of course, with various other brands having churned out a slew of Olympics-inspired apparel and accessories.
We all can’t make it to this month’s Olympic Games, though given the controversy over Brazil’s crime — and polluted waterways and Zika virus outbreak — staying home might not be the worst thing in the world. (South Korea may have the best idea — the pants, shirts and jackets to be worn by its athletes in ceremonies and off-duty are infused with mosquito repellent.)
So when the opening ceremonies begin on Friday, slipping on your favorite Olympics tee or bracelet and hunkering down on the couch won’t seem so bad at all.

 

The look of victory

Polo Ralph Lauren'’s closing ceremony uniforms -- —worn
Photo Credit: Ralph Lauren

Polo Ralph Lauren'’s closing ceremony uniforms -- —worn by Olympic marathon swimmer Haley Anderson, swimmer Ryan Lochte and wrestler Jordan Burroughs -- —include a pony-emblazoned button-down ($145), striped tee ($79.50) and twill shorts ($98.50); at select Lauren and department stores, and ralphlauren.com

O Canada

Twin designers Dean and Dan Caten of uber-cool
Photo Credit: DSquared2

Twin designers Dean and Dan Caten of uber-cool DSquared2 offered up a bold, jock-chic wardrobe for Canadian athletes, including fishtail-backed blazers and shirts and that can'’t-miss-it maple leaf; $30 to $150 at thebay.com

Doing it Italian style

Giorgio Armani keeps the Italian Olympic team dressed
Photo Credit: Armani

Giorgio Armani keeps the Italian Olympic team dressed in style. The Olympic collection from EA7 Emporio Armani includes apparel, accessories and eyewear that Italian athletes can wear kicking back in Rio, and you can wear it, too. Prices were being finalized at press time; for info, visit armani.com

Italian style

Giorgio Armani keeps the Italian Olympic team dressed
Photo Credit: Armani

Giorgio Armani keeps the Italian Olympic team dressed in style. The Olympic collection from EA7 Emporio Armani includes apparel, accessories and eyewear that Italian athletes can wear kicking back in Rio, and you can wear it, too. Prices were being finalized at press time; for info, visit armani.com

Metal winners

H&M'’s attire for Sweden'’s Olympic team is blue
Photo Credit: H&M

H&M'’s attire for Sweden'’s Olympic team is blue and yellow -- —the national colors -- —but the consumer version goes heavy on urban black and gray. The ad campaign features inspirational athletes, among them decathlon gold medalist Caitlyn Jenner; $6 to $60 at select H&M stores and hm.com

Say it ain't so, Stella

Stella McCartney created an eye-catching collection with Adidas
Photo Credit: Adidas

Stella McCartney created an eye-catching collection with Adidas (she i’s the brand'’s creative director) for British athletes, featuring a new British coat-of-arms. But, alas, consumer replicas won'’t be available in the United States.

Dynamic duo

Mega-model Gigi Hadid shares the August cover of
Photo Credit: Vogue/Mario Testino

Mega-model Gigi Hadid shares the August cover of Vogue with Ashton Eaton, Olympic champion and world decathlon record holder.

Leap year

Yes, that'’s mega-model Gigi Hadid keeping up with
Photo Credit: Vogue/Mario Testino

Yes, that'’s mega-model Gigi Hadid keeping up with Olympic decathlete Ashton Eaton -- —he in Nike, she in a cropped Versace turtleneck, Salvatore Ferragamo dress and Fenty Puma by Rihanna sneaker heels. Their meeting, at a fashion shoot in Santa Barbara (where Eaton trains and Hadid grew up), is chronicled in Vogue’'s August issue.

Charm schooled

Alex and Ani partnered with the U.S. Olympic
Photo Credit: ALEX & ANI

Alex and Ani partnered with the U.S. Olympic Committee to create the new Team USA Rio 2016 line of charm bracelets, flaunting charm basketballs, volleyballs, gymnasts— -- pick your sport -- —or this Brazilian-y toucan charm bangle; $32 at Alex and Ani shops (including Roosevelt Field), and alexandani.com

Tops in tanks

Women'’s “USA” Olympics graphic tank, in cotton blend
Photo Credit: Old Navy

Women'’s “USA” Olympics graphic tank, in cotton blend with a racerback; $20.94 at select Old Navy stores and oldnavy.com

Defying gravity

Gymnast Aly Raisman won two gold medals and
Photo Credit: Aeropostale

Gymnast Aly Raisman won two gold medals and a bronze at the 2012 London Olympics. Now she's competing again in Rio. Here, she takes to the air in an Aeropostale back-to-school video wearing the brand's Seriously Stretch denim; $27 at Aeropostale stores and aeropostale.com

Go for the gold

JackThreads flashes the Olympic metal of choice in
Photo Credit: JackThreads

JackThreads flashes the Olympic metal of choice in its "2016" tee; $19 at jackthreads.com

On the horizon

The Brazil Olympics are coming up, and Polo
Photo Credit: Ralph Lauren

The Brazil Olympics are coming up, and Polo Ralph Lauren is ready with a variety of colorful gear, including this plush Team USA beach towel; $60 at select Ralph Lauren and Polo Ralph Lauren stores, select department stores and ralphlauren.com

Flip you for it

USA flip flops, from the new Havaianas Heart
Photo Credit: Havaianas

USA flip-flops, from the new Havaianas Heart USA collection; $28 at select Havaianas stores and us.havaianas.com

Picture this

A picture, as they say, is worth a
Photo Credit: Heinz Kluetmeier

A picture, as they say, is worth a thousand words. Multiply that by 50, and you'’ve got a sense of “50 of the Greatest Moments in Sports,” a photography exhibition at SoHo Contemporary Art in Manhattan. The gallery partnered with Sports Illustrated, gathering classic images from the Olympics—. You'’ll find Michael Phelps, Kerry Strug and the “Miracle on Ice” (pictured), when the men’'s U.S. hockey team beat the Soviet Union in the 1980 Lake Placid games. Plus other sporting events (Muhammad Ali’'s knockout of Sonny Liston, Brandi Chastain'’s winning goal for the U.S. women'’s soccer team, beating China for the 1999 World Cup). If you like one, take it home. Photos are priced $1,000 to $15,000; now throughout August at SoHo Contemporary Art (for info, visit sohocontemporaryart.com).

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