Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shining through

This wire photo shows the Packers in a 31-14 loss to the Steelers in Pittsburgh on November 24, 1953:

PITTSBURGH: Jim Finks (7) Steeler quarterback goes over for first touchdown in first quarter of game with Packers here tonight 10/24. Blocked out on the play were Packers Howard Ruetz (75) and Clayton Tonnemaker (55).
The Packers are sporting their short-lived early 1950s ensemble of green pants, gold jerseys and metallic gold helmets. Love the shiny twill numbers. Head coach Gene Ronzani was fired at the end of this season, and as was so often the case, incoming skipper Lisle Blackbourn would bring his own uniform designs to the Packers for 1954.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

It's In the Bag

I don't know much about the history of Packers training equipment, but this image from the collection of Robert Harvell, auction director at GUU Auctions, makes me want to learn more.

So much to love about this photo. And the shadows make it.

(h/t: Robert Harvell, UniWatch)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Glimpse of the Future at the Pro Shop

Reader Tim O'Donnell recently visited the Packers Pro Shop in Lambeau Field and sent these pictures featuring the Packers' new alternate uniform in display.

This 1929 throwback will be worn during the 2010 season (and which, under the NFL's current uniform regulations, will remain the team's only alternate through 2014):

I admit, the brown helmet is really growing on me.

Love the no-whites look, although it's not strictly authentic. Players of the day did wear white sanitaries, just rolled very low to show as much team color as possible:

The Reebok details don't bother me as much as they have in the past. The vector logo doesn't seem quite as intrusive when rendered in gold.

I could, however, do without the ugly and misleading "NFL EQUIPMENT" logo. The modern shield is a sharp design, easily identifiable at a distance. It defines the NFL brand across all platforms; why isn't it considered strong enough to stand on its own on the uniforms?

On the whole, this uniform is a nice compromise between the classic style and modern requirements. I think Johnny Blood would be proud.

No word yet on the specific games we'll see this uniform on the field.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The (Color) Match Game

Donovan Moore, who runs the excellent ColorWerx site (the only blog and database devoted to the science of color in sports), recently posted the official color palette for the Packers' new throwback uniforms.

The Packers, like all pro teams (and most corporations period), use the PANTONE Matching System to ensure that the Green and Gold are rendered faithfully across all platforms, from websites to bumper stickers, books to banners to t-shirts. Different media will display colors in a different fashion, so Pantone produces a series of color swatches for various applications; coated versus uncoated paper stock, textiles, and more, all in an attempt to maintain color consistency no matter where those colors are displayed.

Although most teams decline to reveal their specific Pantone colors for fear of enabling counterfeit merchandise, the Packers list them in their media guides: Dark Green (PMS 5535-C), Gold (PMS 1235-C) and White. Here they are rendered in the ColorWerx database:

Moreover, Moore reveals that the Packers throwbacks herald a new age in color matching:
Something I just discovered - the first professional sports team to use PANTONE Goe colors in one of their designs. The Packers new throwback uniforms (Acme Packers, with the Navy jerseys with the number within a Gold circle) use a PANTONE Goe color for the Light Brown used in the pants, and another one for the Dark Brown used for the helmet color. I'm probably the only one who cares about this, but I'm seeing it as a sign of things to come. The Goe system is being positioned by Pantone as their primary color set, with what used to be called the PANTONE Matching System (PMS) being regulated as an additional, supplemental set - which is why PMS is now called PANTONE PLUS.
Of course, there's only so much Pantone can do when different materials reflect differently under various lighting conditions, resulting in a perceived mismatch like this: