Friday, February 19, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Burton Denim ‘Anti-Uniform’ for U.S. Snowboarders

For everyone who has been entranced by the snowboarding events and the talents of Shaun White, you probably have noticed the uniforms of Team USA look a little causual. That's because the plaid coats and denim pants have been purposely designed to look that way.

The denim pants are not really jeans but painted Gore-tex. The company behind the design, Burton, went to a lot of trouble to give the team a causal, Anti-uniform.

“Board sports, for the most part, are about expressing individuality — that’s what makes them cool,” said Greg Dacyshyn, the company’s creative director. “So the whole uniform thing, you know, it’s a sensitive subject.”

The uniforms plainly reflected the team’s desire to reconcile the individualism inherent in the sport’s culture with the earnest national pride inherent in the Olympic Games.

The jacket, for instance, is appropriately patriotic, with red, white and blue the main colors. But in a quirky stylistic flourish, certainly not common to team uniforms, the colors are arrayed in a plaid pattern.

The pants, meanwhile, were designed to look exactly like a pair of well-worn blue jeans, complete with faded coloring and minor tears in the fabric.

So while the uniform pants may look like denim, even up close, the actual material is surprisingly flexible and light to the touch.

The fabric for both the jackets and pants was supplied by Gore, whose Gore-Tex material, Dacyshyn said, “is sort of the pinnacle of performance fabric.” The material would be ideal for the potentially wet conditions in Vancouver, he said.

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Welcome to Olympic Updates, my continuing blog to following the Olympic Games. Founded in 2007, I have enjoyed providing news and information on the 2008 Beijing Summer Games and I look forward to keeping you up to date on the 2010 Vancouver Winter Games.

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