Photo Credit: Eric Ryan/Getty Images; Ralph Lauren/AP Photo
While design aficionados applauded Ralph Lauren’s designs from a fashion standpoint, athletes were surprised to find “Made in China” tags on the insides of their ceremony garments when they received them last week.
The issue of outsourced manufacturing had been raised at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, when it came out that due to the short time between the announcement of the team members and the ceremony date, the company had opted to have their garments made overseas. But four years later, the news created serious waves, peaking when Senator Harry Reid suggested the garments should be burned.
In the face of the controversy (despite some arguments that outsourcing isn’t the blow to the U.S. economy that we might think), Ralph Lauren announced Friday that beginning in 2014, all Olympic uniforms will be manufactured in the United States.
But that isn’t enough for iVillage’s Facebook friends -- many of whom found Lauren’s berets to be “silly” and think the designer’s decision to manufacture outside the U.S. to be un-American. Says Jacki on Facebook, “Made in China? What a slap in the face to every American. Shame on Ralph Lauren. When I think of all the out of work Americans who would have been proud to do the work? I am furious. Shame, shame, shame.”
Adds Facebook user Trish, “Made in China? That's what's wrong with this country! Proud of our athletes but NOT the US Olympic Committee for making a BONEHEAD decision.”
Clearly the news isn’t sitting well with Americans, tell us what you think about Ralph Lauren’s designs and the manufacturing news below!
Kate Winick is a lifestyle writer, editor, and social media obsessive living in NYC. Follow her on twitter at @katewinick.