HbD Breakdown: Vegas Golden Knights Jerseys

By JVDW
In Featured
Jun 29th, 2017
6 Comments

Last week, when we dissected all the new Adidas Adizero jerseys, we didn’t say much about the Vegas Golden Knights jerseys. That’s primarily because, as a new franchise with a brand new jersey set, they really deserve their own full post so that we can fully dissect them. We haven’t been a huge fan of the Golden Knights brand in general so far…but could these jerseys turn the tide for this newborn franchise from an aesthetic perspective?

• More: HbD Breakdown: Adidas Adizero Jerseys
• More: HbD Breakdown: Vegas Golden Knights (Name and Wordmark)
• More: HbD Breakdown: Vegas Golden Knights (Logo and Alternate Logo) 

 

Color Me Bad(d)

(To the ah, tick tock, you don’t) Stop, stop with all these colors.

I’ve said in previous posts about the Golden Knights visual brand is that there’s just too many colors in there, with steel grey, black, gold and red. That’s one or two colors too many, and the obvious unnecessary inclusion is red. It’s nowhere in the primary logo, used sparingly in the secondary logo (which is now a shoulder patch on these new jerseys) and generally absent anywhere else, even on their website.

Know what is used dominantly on their website though? Black and gold, which is a great colour combination as the Bruins and Penguins use to their great advantage. A suggestion: the G’Knights could’ve used their unique shade of gold, thrown in some steel grey with the black and you’ve still got something unique to your franchise. Even just getting rid of the red, you’d already improve the jersey.

Is it more boring and less impactful? Maybe. But then why is the most exciting and impactful aspect of the jersey a single thin stripe on the sleeves? Why not spread the red out more throughout the jerseys so it’s a little more balanced? Oh, because then there would be too much going on? With too many colours? Exactly. So we’re left with the sleeve stripe being the focal point of the jersey. Just remove it and make the impact happen elsewhere.

 

Chunky Gold (Medina)

Aside from just the colours, the most obvious aspect of the jerseys are the stripes. Or, chunks of colour may be a more apt description as they resemble something closer to what’s been used recently in Stadium Series jerseys than traditional striping (although you could make an argument against that, drawing some evidence from Pittsburgh’s new/old jerseys).

• More: Stadium Series Jersey Countdown (2017)

If you look at Colorado’s Stadium Series jerseys from 2016, it’s a good example of making the chunks of colour work. Here’s what we said about the sleeve stripes: “…[T]he thick simple stripes on the sleeves are a really nice look and let the Avs flaunt their branded colours on an otherwise all-white jersey.”

These Vegas jerseys have the same general DNA in them as those Avs jerseys, but with an additional thick stripe added to the bottom (this time without a superfluous red stripe). But where the G’Knights jerseys differ is from a less visually-interesting colour palette than the Avs. The gold is a nice addition, but black and grey are not generally known as the most exciting colour combo. It makes everything look a little bit flat and uninteresting, although adding numbers on the sleeves does certainly help.

Again, it goes back to the colour palette. There seems to be a competition happening between the gold vs the black and/or grey. On the home jerseys, the black/grey is dragging the gold down, instead of the gold popping against the grey/black. On the road jerseys, the contrast between the steel grey and the white is too distracting and deadens the gold.

In the end, I’m not against the more modern chunks of colour replacing the traditional stripes at all. It can work, and it can work really well as Colorado has shown. But with the team’s colour palette and how it’s been used here, it’s not nearly as effective. That’s why I found you don’t play around with the chunky gold (Medina).

 

Nothing But A G(‘Knights) Thang

Remember that golden fabric/ribbon you used in primary school crafting? The one that had the rough texture and actually glittered a little bit in the light? It seems Vegas used something similar for these jerseys, a new and innovative element for hockey jerseys and unique for the G’Knights within the league. It’s used throughout the jersey: on the sleeves, on the number outlines, and even on the logo.

I don’t mind doing something a little more visually striking and, in the case of a location like Vegas, it makes a certain amount of sense. Plus, there’s no questioning whether it’s gold or yellow/beige. It’s definitely gold because it has the metallic effect.

As well, there’s some subtle texturing/embroidery on the sleeves and logo the depicts organic flourishes reminiscent of feathers you’d see coming out the top of traditional knight helmets which is a great inclusion in general. It reminds me of what Team Canada did at the 2010 Olympics with their logo crest to great effect.

(Note: In the comments below, one of the designers at Adidas informed me that the organic flourishes (aka filigree) are depicting sagebrush, the Nevadan state flower. It’s a great an subtle connection to the state and the kind of details that I love to see, and this is no exception. The only thing is I’m not sure how many Nevadans would ever recognize it?)

In Vegas’ case, it really works well with the black-on-black effect on the logo crest, both from it’s subtlety but also making sense given its proximity to the knight’s helmet. But it’s overdone when used in combination with the glittered fabric on the gold sleeve stripes. Too many effects/elements/novelties, like that and like this and like that and uh, no matter how subtle and integrated with each other, can come off as cheesy and contrived. Unfortunately, that’s the case here. Although, when you’re in a location like Vegas, “cheesy and contrived” aren’t necessarily missing the mark too much.

That being said, on the image above, you can see some gold-on-gold rivets on the logo’s knight mask. That, I think, works well because the additional elements are small, simple and much less ornate than feathers, as well as making logical sense to include on the helmet.

 

 

Forgot About D(r)e Font

One other element that I have to point out is the typography they used. I’ve been pretty vocal about my dislike of the Vegas typeface used on their wordmark and subsequent promotional materials. It’s a strange, quirky typeface that looks poorly constructed and available for free at dafont.com.

But, I’m glad to see that they apparently forgot about their branded typography for the jersey names and numbers, going with something that looks (a) better constructed and (b) better considered within the content of the jersey. While it’s a little more generic and traditional, it’s still simpler and works for longer names, as “golden knights” conveniently shows off. They didn’t quite totally forget about it though, as you can see on the inside of the collar. So while it’s been drawn in a little bit, that typeface isn’t gone for good.

Also, the inclusion of a dotted pattern on the numbers are a nice touch and seem to compliment the shimmering gold outlining the numbers well.

 

Final Verdict

There are some elements that work, as well as some more innovative and unique elements that give the jersey some interesting subtleties and push hockey jersey design in general into a new and more modern direction. It that sense, it’s a compelling jersey.

But the integration of some of those elements with the chosen colour palette just don’t mesh well together and leave a jersey that’s surprisingly flat given the shiny new things on it.

But, can we now talk about the complete idiocy of white gloves with the grey/black jersey?

 

 

Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments or join the conversation on TwitterFacebook and Instagram! And if you’re interested, we’re now on Pinterest too.

 

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6 Responses to “HbD Breakdown: Vegas Golden Knights Jerseys”

  1. The gold used here has been used on Ottawa’s crest for a while.

    The filigree in the crest and on the sleeves is stylized sagebrush, the state flower.

    I definitely share some of of the same thoughts on these at times regarding the number of colors and how they’re used and combined, but on the whole, these came out quite nice and I really like how the details came out; rich and extravagant up close (fitting of the royal aestetic), but invisible from a distance. I rather like the way the blandness of the black and grey is balanced by the glittery punch of the gold (and even the red, though I think it could be utilized better if it needs to be there).

    • JVDW says:

      Of course, forgot about Ottawa! Thanks for the reminder.

      Very cool to know about the sagebrush. It’s a nice, subtle connection to the state and city. Not sure even Nevadans would make that connection without being told, but like I said in the article, I think it works really well on the logo.

      It’s difficult to know exactly how much that gold will pop against the grey/black without seeing it in person, and it’s entirely possible that the pictures just don’t do it justice.

      As always, thanks for the comments and insight!

    • JVDW says:

      And what can you tell me about those white gloves on a grey/black jersey?

  2. Rob Myers says:

    The Jersey is alright. The red actually saves it in my opinion. I know grey isn’t exactly an exciting colour (tone, shade?) but it is nice to see a team go with a colour that isn’t red, blue or black for a change. I feel the Kings could try something along the lines of the anniversary jersey without gold and be onto something but that’s getting off topic a little bit.

    The whole VGK branding has just been off for me. The direction seems to be a bit all over the place.

    • JVDW says:

      They grey’s definitely unique within the league, but I’m not convinced yet it’s a great look (thinking of the Arizona Diamondbacks, for example). It will be interesting to see how it plays out over the season after we get a glimpse of it during regular game play.

  3. AE says:

    Marc Andre Fleury makes it look good though

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