Friday December 20th, 2013

Blue to red and back to blue again. That’s what the “USA” lettering on the back of the Sochi Olympic medal-stand coats will do this February.

Nike unveiled its medal stand and other “villagewear” gear, showing off a titanium-colored coat with the emblazoned “USA” over a lenticular fabric that shifts colors as it moves.

To accentuate the Olympic theme on the down-filled jacket, Nike uses gold satin stitching—even the silver and bronze winners will wear the gold—and plenty of red, white and blue stitching on the pockets. There’s some obscured details just for the athletes, such as embroidered “Land of the Free” and “Home of the Brave” phrases in the pockets and stars on the interior front of the jacket, and a nod to former hockey coach Herb Brooks’ “This is Your Moment” speech.

The Nike Flyknit Chukka shoe comes complete with wool threading and lining for warmth and “USA” on the tongue with red, white, and blue patriotic sock liners. Also expect plenty of Nike-made USA-themed gear for the athletes to wear in Sochi, even the ones who don’t win medals.

But that red-to-blue shifting, that you’ll only see on the medal stand. Tim Newcomb covers stadiums, design and technology for Sports Illustrated. Follow him on Twitter at @tdnewcomb.

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