Cricket Originals Blog: All the latest from the Original cricket t-shirt shop

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  1. Finding the One 

    In my last Blog post I talked about current trends in Cricket Bat stickers and how there was a following towards certain shapes and lettering. If you’ve been keeping up with the Cricket Originals Instagram feed you’ll have seen lots of mock ups of different sticker ideas that I’ve been playing with, be it super modern embossed branding, multi coloured geometric cut out patterns or retro style stamps. One underlying theme with the designs is something that I’ve always tried to keep to that it is original. What do I mean by that?

    When I say original you might instantly think that it means being unique, a one-off, new. When I think of original I think about original values and beliefs in the design, about going back to move forward. Examining what makes a design great and how can I use that to enhance my thoughts and designs? I want to create designs that feel authentic, like they’ve always been around and are not just my version of a current trend.

    So in the quest to create a Cricket Originals bat sticker I’ve looked at many different things for inspiration, from cars to boxes, from beer bottles to shop signs and of course cricket bat graphics old and new. I’ve also looked at how the design is going to sit on the bat and how that might effect the design process. This last part is particularly important as there are different sides to the bat and very different shapes and sizes for the sticker.

    Normally there are a combination of 3 stickers: The face, the top of the spine and the toe. Usually all 3 will match in style and colour with the two larger stickers (Face/Top) containing the brand and the model of bat whilst the toe will be a brand logo.

    Firstly, I looked at trying to create a single sticker that wrapped around the bat from front to back but whilst the face of the bat is flat the back is a curved surface which can create an optical illusion making some straight lines appear curved or misshapen.

    With the edge of the bat also tapering towards the handle this meant a single wraparound sticker would be too tricky to pull off. Hmmm, back to the drawing board...

    So, 3 stickers. 3 stickers that all fit together in style but that are different shapes and sizes.

    Inspiration

    Style-wise, what I wanted was a simple authentic look, something that fits with the other Cricket Originals designs but is different from other bat branding out there. I looked towards what made certain designs work, their shapes, colours, typography and logo layout.

    I went back to look at old cricket bats such as 1970’s Slazengers and 1980’s Symmonds. They had a simple flat look that worked well and used basic colours to keep a clean considered look.

     One Multi

    I looked at cut outs and transparency and how letters, numbers and shapes were layered over different surfaces. Beer bottles and food jars have to convey their branding over a curved surface and racing cars often carry multiple branding and numbers all across the same space. How would a longer thinner logo, such as one across the toe of the bat be shaped?

    As with all my designs I looked at peeling back the layers of a design and trying to simplify it so that only the essentials were needed. Block colours, clean shapes and simple typography making it legible at any angle and distance. Something authentic and classic but above all something original.

     

    Next Blog Post - This is The One

     

  2. What’s in a sticker?

    If you've read my previous posts (of course you have!) you’ll know my love for cricket bats. I love the look and feel and the different shapes and sizes but above all I love the branding and stickers.

    Cricket bat branding has come a long way back from when it was a simple 1 colour sticker with the brand name on it, now there are embossed stickers with images embedded behind the main logo, spot foiled stickers with highlights of silver or gold as well as clear printed stickers to enhance that minimal look.

    So, having done my research, which is basically just spending hours looking at bats on the old interweb, I’d noticed there were a few trends which lots of manufacturers were following which I thought I’d share.

    Shapes - Ribbons, Angles and Capital Letters

    Ribbons  

    Some manufacturers have always used a ribbon in their branding; it normally runs down the bat and contains the manufacturer's logo with the model name contained below and It works particularly well on the back of the blade as it draws the eye down the bat. Some brands have always had this a as part of their logo whilst other have only recently incorporated in.

    Cricket Bat Ribbon

    Gunn & Moore, Gray Nicholls, Newbury and Salix have long used a ribbon shapes in their stickers and modern companies such as B3, Viking and Focus are all excellent examples of using ribbons in branding.

    Capital Letters  

    Favoured by most of the brands in India and Pakistan as they have abbreviated letters for their brand names you’re most likely to see SS/TON or maybe SF or CA at your local ground. Big and bold, the letters are normally in a single block colour and are often rotated 90 degrees to run up the bat.

    As  these brands are increasingly putting their money into sponsorship, you’ll also see more of them on TV with names such as Eoin Morgan, Michael Carberry and Hashim Amla all using such brands.

    Cricket Bat Letters

    One addition to this category are the Indian tyre manufacturers who had the foresight to sponsor their superstars. MRF (Madras Rubber Factory) sponsored Sachin Tendulkar back in the early 2000’s and have now become as recognised across the globe for their red lettered bats as much as their tyres. With Virat Kohli, AB De Villiers and Shikhar Dhawan currently using their bats they will only become more popular in the village game.

    Angled shapes

    This is the biggest trend of the moment and a go-to look for most new brands out there.

    It has the square sticker angled off at the bottom somewhere between 30 and 45 degrees. Often the angle is going up from left to right as you look at the front of the blade and will then be mirrored on the back of the bat. The main logo is contained within the shape and the bat type or grading is often below the main shape in a smaller block.

    Cricket Bat Angle

    Kookaburra, New Balance, Puma, Hunts County, Hell 4 Leather and Helygen and all brands that use these shapes well on their bats and the angle draws the eye across and helps blend the front and back stickers together.

    Looking at these trends got me thinking about what I’d do for my own bat. Would I follow one of these formats or try to do something different?

    Next blog post - Finding the One