Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Quite a Stretch

Week 11 is in the books, and by now we have plenty of reference on the new uniforms. Take a good look - this is what the well-dressed Packer will be wearing next season:

  • Tank top sleeves? Check.

  • Itty bitty sleeve shoulder stripes? Check.

  • Peekaboo shoulder pads? Check.

  • Matte finish? Check.

  • Super-stretchy numbers? Check.
Those numbers are a particular point of concern. Made out of the same material as the jersey, and sewn to it with elastic thread, the numbers conform to the contours of the player's body. As the jersey is stretched tighter and tigher across his torso, the numbers bend and warp:

There aren't any right angles left on that number "5". Matthews' nameplate also appears to bend upwards across his pads.

This also happens with the front numbers, no more so than on Aaron Kampman's jersey, with the kerning between his "7" and "4" exaggerated by the tight stretch.

This gives him a certain 1970s retro look:

Even Brockington's gap-toothed jersey is preferable to my eye. The beauty of the Packers' uniform is its timelessness. Strong athletic block numbers give it weight and gravity. Wavy, fluid numbers do not.

I don't have a position of knowledge to debate the performance merits of the new uniforms, but from an æsthetic perspective, it's just more chipping away at a once-perfect uniform.

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