08 May Local Olympian Cleans Up!
It’s a privilege living in Ottawa for a number of reasons – especially for the number of local celebrities and public figures we’re able to rub elbows with. Even better, are those we’re able to watch as they rise in their respective fields, and sometimes achieve their dreams head-on.
One of the youngest Ottawans to make us proud, is one Paul Bonifacio Parkinson: Italian-Canadian competitive figure skater with a true zest for life.
The lean, witty 23 year-old optimist has represented Italy on the world stage for a number of years, and has been described since he was a toddler by his mom Edi as “spirited.” This year, if you’ve followed any of the headlines, you might have heard how he fulfilled his number one bucket list goal: making it to the Olympics.
Pretty lofty ambitions for a young man under 25. Regardless, Paul refused to let any obstacle stand in his way, and eventually found himself on Russian soil (ice to be specific) competing for Team Italy at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
Beyond his athletic ability, as a male professional figure skater, Paul cannot rely on hair or makeup to stand out on the ice like his female counterparts. Alternatively, male figure skaters weigh a great deal of importance into each garment worn on the ice.
Today, Paul has many outfits, since being sponsored by Armani at the Olympic games – but in the months leading up to the games, he also had a collection of personal costumes that have helped carry him toward success. One of his favourites in this captivating green, black and gold getup that the media seem to have documented more than any other.
It’s tough to see from afar when Paul is soaring through the air or gliding past you at incredible speeds, but this one-of-a-kind handmade outfit is incredibly detailed. A lot of time went into every stitch. There are tiny sequins within the vine-like stitching down each pant leg, and the mesh layer on top of the silk green fabric is fragile to the touch. Moreover, the thin tufts of fabric on each wrist and surrounding the neck are equally fragile and soft.
Each intricate detail on this costume, and others, requires the utmost professional care each time it is washed and prepared again for another performance or competition. Thus, naturally Paul and his family are diligent in seeking a reliable, quality cleaner to trust with this precious clothing item.
Professional skaters like Paul might make their job seem effortless and look great doing it, but the reality is that elite athletes are functioning at a high levels of exertion. Whether its hockey equipment or skate gear, sweat and strength goes into every technique you see; and that takes a serious toll on their clothing material.
This month while back home here in Ottawa, before heading off to perform on a cruise ship for the summer, Paul chose Browns to clean this very uniform.
Paul’s family were aware of Browns’ reputation for cleaning special care items – so they decided to check us out.
The result? Though the outfit has been across the ocean and back and accompanied Paul through many ups and downs in his impressive young career as an Olympian, the fabric was cleaned and restored to its original vibrancy.
In a short amount of time, it was returned to him as stunning and detailed as the day it was first created.