It started with a promise. May 2014. Andrew and myself both ran for the Anza Committee and in our election campaigns made campaign promises that we’d try and open up the “black box” kit design process so that members could have more input.
Politicians will promise anything to get that vote. I was running uncontested so actually meant it in my manifesto – although the reality turned out to be harder than expected. It’s been a journey to get there but thought it worthwhile giving you some insight into the development of the jersey so you can see how we got to that bit of fabric that’s hopefully in your hands now.
Rather than sit in an ivory tower and design something that the committee thinks is cool, we decided to find out from You All on the favourite jersey of years past. The 2013 Black classic was the runaway winner – taking 54% of the votes cast. This was our starting point for the new kit design.
After being inundated with zero volunteers for members with design experience, We pulled out the highlighter pens during a late night in the office. This gave us a few rough drafts to start playing around with.
Committee feedback was that #1 was the more palatable of my childlike scribbles – seeing as it was the only one that didn’t rip off the new Giant-Alpecin jersey. But that we should seek help from a grown-up that knew what they were doing…
Around this time, high-end boutique manufacturer Babici came on board due to a local connection and a smashing deal we could not refuse.
Something went awray in the vendor briefing process and our 1st draft from Babici came back. Vast amounts of passionate feedback were provided in return – including the phrase “shit sandwich“.
Full marks to Babici as they came back very rapidly with design #2 which was far more in line with expectations.
Some minor modifications of font, and sponsor placement got us to design #3
But then somebody had the bright idea of looking back at our earliest concept and said what about a vertical stripe and so Babici knocked out a vertical stripe design.
As all of you who work and have to attend interminable meetings know there is a point at which returns on time and effort start to diminish, but we pressed on with “how would it look if we moved the stripe a little to the right”. As Team Sky would say, not that we were copying them at all “Marginal Gains!” and so with one last effort we had our design #5.
We were pretty happy with that but as with all things designed by committee, there were a few more minor tweaks. “Make the ANZA and lead sponsor stand out more” so we rotated it and made use of all that white space ” and ended up with Design #6 which was deemed “Too in your face!”, and so with one final tweak we got to where we are today and pressed the big red button marked “PRINT”.
Designing with a committee of 7 different people giving input is surprisingly hard but we all agreed pretty quickly when the final design came through. It retains the essence of 2013 but is a fresh take on the classic design with enough subtleties (mismatched leg colors, vertical writing on the back?) to give it a hint of edginess (at least compared to ANZA jersey’s past).
Hope you like it!