Stella McCartney‘s Team GB kit has been in development for two years, it is reported. Which goes to show that the most straightforward matters can be turned into major productions. Mind you, the manufacturing is under the aegis of the German company Adidas. You can see why. If it takes two years to come up with “What about blue, not red?”, it’s going to be fantastically hard to work out how to actually make the stuff. It all reminds me of the time a friend was commissioned to interview Tommy Hilfiger. “What are you going to ask him?” I said, in genuine puzzlement. “How he invented the sweatshirt? What made him think of putting a slogan on it?” No doubt I just don’t understand how complex such matters really are.
Admittedly, I have a resentment against McCartney (below), having bought a raincoat from her in the belief that it would last for ever. It, too, was a nice blue. But a) the buttons kept coming off, and b) the buckle on the belt – held on with one runner – was so heavy that it inevitably got lost one day after I forgot to tie it on. There’s a great deal more to good design than making things look snazzy. And that, I’m afraid, is where the Germans come in.