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Earlier in the year I volunteered to use my background in design to help layout a new racing kit for the Atlanta Triathlon Club, which I'm a member of. Since I have some previous experience with the More Than Sport Kit I designed with Professional Triathlete Chris Lieto, I thought I would give this another shot. Below are the final designs and some photos from one of races this year.
We wanted to update the look of the kit with the existing logo. The previous design had a lot of green and black, so we wanted to add a little bit of color. One of the issues we had with the previous design was that the kit was predominantly black with fabric that was not really breathable. We decided to go with De Soto Sport Triathlon Company as the vendor for our new kit. Several of our club members had already been using De Soto apparel and were very happy with the lightweight and breathable material. We also worked with Hidden Bay Graphics that would take our design and produce the kits on the De Soto products.
When I started on the project I thought we would only be doing a tri kit and later found out that it would be several pieces including a cycling kit. I was really excited about the possibilities. In order to design a look that club members would like, a survey was created to gather information about what they wanted to see in the new kit, things they liked or didn't like in the previous kit. With that information gathered, a group of 4 worked together one afternoon at my house, to design this kit.
We wanted some lighter colors, but also wanted to keep some black in key areas of the design. We also wanted some texture or pattern. This is where we used the hexagonal pattern. We had seen this pattern in some of De Soto's designs and it looked great. I also wanted to use lines that would look slimming and give a more tapered look. In some areas we used a white/grey gradient to help keep things cool in the sun while racing, specifically in the back. Typically the longest part of a race will be on the bike and your back will be exposed to the sun , so we reduced the amount of black used in that area.
Here are some more designs from the various pieces for the kit.
We had a great experience working with De Soto Sports & Hidden Bay Graphics. They provided all the templates for each of the pieces and were very helpful in answering questions about the process.
Of all the pieces designed, the cycling jersey has been the favorite among the club members. I have to say I agree. I love the 2 color sleeves, hexagonal pattern over the white/gray gradient.
I wore the kits this weekend and can honestly say I love how they feel. I raced this weekend and can honestly say the Forza Tri Top breathed really well and I couldn't really feel the black absorb heat thanks to Skin Cooler™ Panels. The Forza Tri Shorts with the Compressor™ fabric felt really good. I can't wait to do longer races in these shorts. I also wore the cycling kit this weekend during a 47 mile ride and can honestly say, this is my favorite cycling gear. The bib shorts feel great! I did a 3 mile brick run with the cycling jersey and felt comfortable through the run despite it being mid-80's and no shade on the road.
Below are some photos from a recent race where club members got to debut the new gear.
Comments have been positive from club members. Several have even said they feel like a super hero when wearing the new kits.
I have to thank Jim Boylan (Club Director), John Rutledge & Bethany Rutledge for taking several hours of a Sunday afternoon to provide your input and direction in the design of the new kit. It was a team effort and it turn out really well. Also thanks to Hidden Bay Graphics and De Soto Sport Triathlon Company for your guidance during this process and for producing quality products. A shout out goes out to our sponsors as well - 1st Choice Healthcare Center, Atlanta Cycling, Podium Multisports, Georgia Multisports Productions, and Dentistry in Buckhead.
At some point I want to do a photo shoot with the new kit in a non-race setting so you can really see what it looks like. Keep an eye out on the blog. I've got ideas turning in my head.