Boxing Day sees the launch of Sparta’s collaboration with Kit and Bone, with an amalgamation of hallmark styles, starting with a shirt design of the Sparta Laconia.
This isn’t just any partnership. This is a partnership of two companies looking to make their mark on the footballing paraphernalia scene and share their love of the beautiful game.
Kit and Bone have existed for a mere 6 months, but the infant business has enjoyed startling success over that period, boasting mug and print designs for every Premier League side (and a custom-made Sunderland print for yours truly) as well as a regular column for MOTD Magazine. Not to mention the ‘Unofficial Replica’ range of shirts that are going down a storm with those of us disillusioned with the soulless £70 numbers rammed down our throats from various kit manufacturers.
Founder and self-confessed football kit obsessive, Matt Pascoe, has worked as an illustrator with the likes of Arsenal and Aston Villa as well as Peterborough United, winning a competition to design his beloved Posh’s home kit for the 2001/02 season.
Ahead of our 26th December release of our inaugural piece of merchandise, Sparta Spotlight spoke to Matt on the upcoming launch, his route into kit design and what lies ahead for our partnership.
As a bit of background, where does your love of design and more specifically love of kit design from?
Its really grown out of always wanting to contribute even a piece to football and my obsession with football kits. When I was a kid, I would design my own kits for different teams pixel by pixel on Microsoft Paint and I would draw out my own football comics. It has always just been a huge passion of mine. I was lucky enough to win a competition to design Peterborough’s home shirt back in 2001/02. We stayed up that year and it was worn by none other than Jimmy Bullard, so that’s my claim to fame! I was lucky enough to work with my team for a while after that and I believe they still use one of my designs on their season tickets.
Where did the idea for the business itself stem from?
It came out of the blue really. One day on my lunch break I started doodling a skeleton in a classic Juve kit and popped it on social media. It went down like a house on fire really. It became an outlet for me to draw my favourite kits, not to be partisan and to just show my allegiance to the beautiful game, which is what Kit and Bone is all about really. I was amazed at how many people loved the designs and we started getting requests. For the last few months we have been doing the shirts, mugs etc and its really nice to see the appreciation of what you’re doing. I think people find the designs wonderfully familiar and exciting. As we have grown so quickly it can be quite difficult to gage a longer-term plan, but we are speaking to people though and there are some partnerships in the pipeline. At the moment I am just enjoying meeting like-minded people, such as Chris at Sparta, who just love the game.
From being an avid reader of football magazines as a child, a column in MOTD magazine must have been a dream come true for you?
I had spent some time with the editors a few years ago doing a design for a bespoke Lionesses crest for the women’s national team (unfortunately the FA opted to stay with the standard Three Lions, despite talks). I approached them in the summer to see if their audience would be interested in a kit column, where the character (and focal point of Kit and Bone’s logo) Bony would model various shirts. It’s been really nice to receive messages off parents, sending drawings that their child have done of Bony. It resonates with me because I was doing the same when I was a kid, with Shoot etc. It’s doing something to make people smile. Obviously its not possible for every child to be the next Ronaldo and think ‘where’s my place in the game?’ If you are passionate about a certain aspect of football you can do it!
Onto the collaboration with Sparta. Having seen the designs, it looks like a match made in heaven. How did this come to be and what are the plans going forward?
Chris reached out to me on Instagram and after looking at what Sparta had to offer it seemed to be a good match. I felt that we were on a similar wavelength and our approach to products we are both putting to market is ultimately to try and do good in the game. Like Kit and Bone, the designs are really exciting and different which is why we are quite excited about the project. We are releasing the Laconia shirt first off to test the waters, but we will look at shirts to encompass all the gloves of various styles. In regard to the future partnership we may well put the Kit and Bone crest back into the gloves and release more styles with Sparta. It is an exciting time for both of us.
You can find out more about Kit & Bone right here
The brand new Laconia Jersey is available now!