“Here’s a quick story about the development of the SBCC jersey design and a book review all rolled into one!” – Singapore Baroudeurs, Glenn Jeffries.
London to Singapore
Shortly after returning from a ride and uploading to Strava, it became apparent to Disco that the random group of riders in Singapore with whom he had ridden last year was becoming a force to be reckoned with on the roads of Singapore. This motley group of riders dressed randomly in Castelli, Assos, Craft, Rapha and a spattering of London Baroudeurs attire was out there sticking in the kilometres week in week out. The same old faces meeting on a Saturday morning at 5am for the RTI’s (round the island rides) regardless of the weather or the amount of beer consumed the night before!
An extract from Strava messages reads:
Dude, you need to start your club! Singapore Baroudeurs has a good ring to it 😉
Hi mate…there are 8 of us on a good day now!
Now you’re talking, Monsieur Captain! Let’s work on a design and get this thing rollin’!
Sounds good Lowell.
The ‘Desk’ Test
With that it didn’t take too long to start designing the Singapore Baroudeurs Cycling Club (SBCC) kit. Of course we wanted it to carry the familiar logos and fonts of the London Barouduers so when we do ride together we are all identifiably from the same CC, but we wanted it to be relevant to Singapore and the history of the club. The first ideas were rough sketchy designs to get a feel for what we all visually preferred. A design would lie around on the desk for a week or two to test the ‘longevity’ factor. I always do this. Design something and keep taking a look at the design every time you pass it. After a week or so, you’ll either love it or will have grown tired of looking at it! I grew tired of looking at the first two or 3 designs.
The Jersey Project
I trawled the internet, had several discussions with the London Baroudeurs about what we all wanted to see on the jerseys and waited for my new book order to arrive. I had come across a book entitled ‘The Jersey Project’ by Bill Humphreys and Jerry Dunn whilst researching jerseys designs. After coughing at $125 for a secondhand book on Amazon, the wonderful guys over at Velotastic dug me a copy out for 25 quid! A week later the book made it half way around the world to me and I became a ‘jersey nerd’ overnight! I cannot rate this book highly enough. It brings two jersey collections together from Europe and America and catalogues each jersey by event in a visually stunning and simple and manner and through these jerseys a story is told of America’s cycling history in the context of the larger European races and Grand Tours.
Time Travel with the Pro-Peloton
I never tire of letting my eyes wonder over the imagery or obsessing over the details of the riders that donned them. The book has a fantastic duplexity to it. Not only in the two continents it references, but in the way the book can be read. Initially I used this book for the inspiration to create the designs for the SBCC jersey. It is a visual array of every conceivable jersey design you can imagine and in 5 minutes, the book was covered in post-it notes and part of the coffee table mess as as I jotted down ideas in my sketch book. Secondly though, I can become lost reading about Adri van Houwelingen, the older brother of ‘pace bully’ Jan! (Page 132). There are no images of the riders, just their jerseys, but this makes the book far more interesting. Even if some of the names are not familiar (and I can guarantee that you will not recognise all the names) you imagine the riders who sweated and suffered as they climbed cols and sprinted to the line and that for me makes this book far more interesting than a simple cycling history reference book. Curiosity finds you typing into Google names that the auto-correct function just does not approve of and before you know it there is a feast of images on your laptop showing Pedro Delgado Robledo winning the Vuelta in 1985 or Lucien Van Impe flying up mountains in the Tour De France in 1976. It’s quite a magical book.
Baroudeur – A ‘Battler’
After about a month we arrived at the final SBCC jersey design. We opted for the bold red jersey design (reminiscent of the Maglio Rosso) as the simplicity of the single colour with the white stripes to ‘hold’ the logos struck all of the SBCC team members as a classic timeless design that would be very identifiable when riding in the peloton. The colour also being relevant to the red and white colours of the Singapore flag. A smaller Union Jack and Singapore flag reference the club’s UK origins and SBCC’s affiliation with this, whilst the inside of the collar reminds the rider every time the jersey is worn what he/she is: A Baroudeur. A Battler!