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When God Gives You Some Blue Tackle Twill…

…You Gotta Do A DIY

By Phil Hecken, with Terence Kearns & Joe Hilseberg

It started with a Twitter DM.

A little over a week ago, UW friend and supporter Terence Kearns sent me a direct message with the following:

“So, you wanted to see what’s up?” with the following pics:

There were actually a couple more pics attached as well. Then came the following message:

“Joe Hilseberg made all the letters/numbers from glacier twill. The 7 Line shoulder, neckline and rear hem patches came from a 7 Line Army jersey and the flag patch I bought at Citi Field. Bought the blank jersey online at a hockey supply company.

“Wanna write it up for a weekend post?”

Well, hell yes! I’d love to know the story behind that custom job. So I asked TK and creator Joe Hilseberg if they’d be able to provide me with the details and the backstory.

Terence Kearns:

While doing a coupla jerseys to replenish my collection a few years ago, Joe mentioned he came across some glacier twill and I should do a Mets themed jersey. I put it outta my mind until I had an extra 7 Line jersey that I wanted fixed and another I wanted customized. I had an idea just to strip the jersey I planned to fix and use some elements to make the Mets/7Line Army jersey. I sent Joe the JPEG of the blank jersey I got online with pics of the patches and after a few tweaks he came up the mock up in an afternoon! HAD TO do diagonal lettering cos I’m a NYR fan and HAD TO do black drop shadow cos it’s the best Mets Uni element since their inception and it just looks AMAZING on the orange jersey!

Despite the fact that I’m in complete disagreement with “Tezza” (his nickname) on the Mets and the unfortunate black block shadow they added in the late 1990s, I have to admit, it does look pretty cool on an orange jersey, and when the Mets aren’t using it. How did he get the name “Tezza” and pick the number (13)?

Tezza is just my nickname. Like Terry would be. The Brits do it like that: Gary = Gazza, Aaron = Azza, Sharon = Shazza, etc. 13 has just always been my number.

Before we get to Joe and his treatment, a bit of background. Terence is a “member” of the “7 Line Army,” a group of rabid Mets fans who pack both Citi Field Shea sections and who also travel to opposing ballparks to cheer on their favorite team.

Anyway, I talked with Joe who described how he and TK created this one of a kind jersey, and here’s Joe’s account:

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TK is right… I had a ton of Glacier twill left over from some old Mets projects I did.

He asked me to come up with some concepts for a Mets hockey jersey that featured the 7 Line elements that we were going to strip off of an old jersey.

I came up with some designs…

And after some tweaking we settled on one.

From there I cut out the letters to be sewn and even sent TK a little sneak peak of them.

After the blue layer was sewn, I heat pressed the letters onto the jersey. TK was very specific about the arc and letter spacing he wanted, so I sent him photos to confirm.

I used heat resistant tape to position the front letters before pressing them into place.

I was able to remove all of the 7 Line patches from the old jersey pretty easily. Also I took off the jock tag area and created a new patch out of it complete with serged edges. We used this to cover the brand mark on the back of the jersey.


And then we have the finished product!

– – – – –

SWEET! Thanks Joe and TK for sharing this little DIY story. It’s amazing what one can do when one has a bit of blue tackle twill left over…

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Kreindler’s Korner

I had the distinct pleasure of featuring the wonderful artwork of artist Graig Kriendler on two occasions over the summer and fall of 2017, and more recently, in August of 2018.

For those who don’t wish to click the links, Graig paints baseball heroes (and regular guys) from the past, and is an immense talent.

Occasionally, I will be featuring his work on Uni Watch.

Here’s today’s offering (click to enlarge):

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Title: “Enter Sandman”
Subject: Mariano Rivera, 2004
Medium: Oil on linen
Size: 26″ x 36″

I’m no wordsmith. Not even close. And sometimes I try to be. But when it comes to Mariano Rivera, I can never adequately articulate how incredible he was. When he comes up in conversation with my friends, I do my best to hit home the fact that we’ll never see his like again. This is, of course, after most of my friends have done the same thing (and that’s whether they’re Yankee fans or not). I just don’t know if there was ever a player who made the game as ‘broken’ as he did when he was on the mound. I mean, for intents and purposes, from 1997 to 2013, if New York had a lead on you in the eighth, the game was over. He was that automatic. But, as I had mentioned before, I’m no wordsmith. And especially to you readers, that would be pretty evident.

It’s only in my painting that I feel like I have even a modicum of control when it comes to emoting a particular idea. And emoting something like the dominance of this great Panamanian pitcher is not something that I should depict traditionally. Surely, action shots on the mound – regardless of the angle – can be compelling and dynamic. In reality though, that sort of visual is only a small part of the story.

But being in Yankee Stadium on a cold September night, or watching the game on television while sitting in your favorite seat, provided us all with a common experience. When the opening notes to Metallica’s ‘Enter Sandman’ blasted on the PA and you saw number 42 trotting out of the gate, well, that kind of said it all: game over.

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Thanks, Graig! You can (and should!) follow Graig on Twitter.

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More Gouache From Gene Sanny

Weekend readers will recall I’ve run a few sub-ledes featuring artwork by Gene Sanny, done using a Gouache technique, which basically means applying watercolor colors to an image and then removing (or erasing) them to create a new image. You can see this technique used on an earlier painting by Gene.

Here’s one I received last weekend:

Got another one done during the NFC championship game today. Joe Kapp in the frigid temps, back when the Vikes played outdoors.

Check it out (click any image to enlarge):

And the finished product:

Beautiful Gene! Keep ’em coming.

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What Phil Did…

… last weekend.

In case you noticed, I took last weekend off (a birthday present from Paul) — even though it was a couple weeks past that day (1/3), Paul had offered me my b-day “weekend” off, so I asked if I could defer that vacation until last weekend, when I curled with the Long Island Curling Club in a “friendly” versus the Windsor (Nova Scotia) Curling Club. A “friendly” consists of playing multiple matches against another club, with one club being named champion at the end.

News12 Long Island actually came to our rink to document the event:

If you watched that (and I know you did), you probably caught some glimpses of my rink (“team”) in the background — we were all wearing Islanders jerseys and Long Island Curling Club pants.

Not all of the teams “dressed alike” although most players from the opposing Windsor Curling Club wore official WCC red jackets with black pants (our new Canadian friends explained to us that “crazy pants” hadn’t yet made it to their sheets, and the standard dress is still always black pants). Perhaps they’ll come out of this tourney with a new appreciation for our sartorial choices.

My rink actually wore three different “uniforms” throughout our three games: opening night we all sported the LICC pants with light blue LICC t-shirts (which you can see below on a few of us in this group shot with the WCC — that’s me with the upraised fist):

You can also see how great the Windsor squad looks in their black and red.

On day two we played two games, and my rink sported the Isles gear. In the splash photo, note there are five of us: two of our members (Colin Kasprowicz and his son Ilya) “split” a spot in the rotation, so Colin (upper right) only sported the Isles jersey, while Ilya (front) rocked a royal Isles sweater and LICC pants. We all had custom matching caps too. Here’s a full shot showing the team (with Nova Scotia and USA flags to boot!). L-R: Me (Third or “Mate”), Johnny Lusardi (second), Jack Glanzer (fourth or “skip”) and Colin Kasprowicz (first, or “Lead”); splitting duties with Colin is his son, Ilya, in the front. It’s tough to tell from the photo, but all five of us are wearing very similar, but actually different jerseys from different eras.

The caps were cool — and a custom job done by John Lusardi — featuring “Long Island Curling Club” on the front, a design with a curling stone on the right side, a LICC “crest” with two brooms on the left side, and (it’s tough to see) our NOB in orange on the backs of the caps. Thanks, Johnny!

For our final match on Saturday night, we elected to just go with crazy pants and various LICC shirts.

All in all it was a great time, and we all definitely made some new Canadian friends (I’ve been to Canada many times, including Nova Scotia, and even dated a Canadian lady for about 8 months — I can confirm that Canadians are some of the nicest people on the planet!). The plan is for us to visit Windsor next year for a rematch.

If you want to see more photos (mostly of my squad) from the friendly, click here. Yes, I am wearing my own NOB on the Islanders jersey. It was a gift.

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Uni Watch News Ticker
By Phil

Baseball News: Ooooooh! Check out this beautiful 1915 Bradley Knit Wear ad featuring Pittsburgh Pirates star Honus Wagner (from Bruce Menard). … You don’t see pitchers warming up in jackets nowadays, but I bet they might if they could wear this awesome tequila sunrise jacket, seen here on the Experss (from Goat Jerseys). … Chris Richards (aka “Phantom Dreamer” writes, “Mariners fans have become so frustrated over the management’s tone deafness regarding the team’s uniforms & overall visual identity that they have reached the point that they’re constructing custom jerseys. Below, a powder blue trident jersey made out of a TBTC #Royals jersey.” … The Great One (Wayne Gretzky) turned 58 yesterday, so Bruce Menard posted this great photo of Gretz’ in a “99” Dodgers jersey (love that bandanna/headband and full mullet). … It’s a little tough to see, but caps didn’t always have embroidered logos — as this Larry Doby photo show, the logo is a patch, sewn directly onto the cap (from John Sabol). A couple more examples can be seen here and here (from Robert Hayes). … The Texas Rangers will retire Adrian Beltre’s #29 (from Jimmer Vilk). … There were no Allegheny Yinzers jerseys on display yesterday at the Altoona Curve booth, but they did have the hat (from Denny Pottinger). … I’m pretty sure we had this info before, but just in case: Pirates have a new camo cap for 2019 (from Darrell Dawson). … Angels reliever Keynan Middleton will apparently now wear number 99 (he previously wore number 39, and other Angels were in their numbers from last year at Moving Day to Spring Training). From C. Duncan. … Check out this amazing archival footage of the Montreal Expos home opener vs. STL, inaugural year at Jarry Park, 1969. Goat Jerseys notes, “Some really cool footage here. Check out the 0:55 mark, lady in the Expos blazer👌.” … In honor of the Royal Rumble, the Arizona D-Bax have created a custom jersey for Vince McMahon (from Mike Chamernik).

NFL News: Here’s some more follow-up on the supposed New York Jets leaked unis that appeared on the twitter a few days ago (from Ryan Bower). … The Pro Bowl game, which no one will watch, is today. Here’s a great look at AFC helmets and NFC helmets, back when they were conference-specific (from Old Time Football). I believe back then the conferences simply repainted the teams regular helmets (as the season had ended) for the game, but I could be wrong. Anyone? … Here’s a pretty interesting (be warned: WaPo) article on the future Rams/Chargers $5 BILLION stadium, which may be the “future” of all stadia. … In yesterday’s Pro Bowl skills competition, JuJu Smith-Schuster wore his shirt backwards on top of his sweatshirt so that his name appeared on his chest (from Brian Spiess).

College Football News: Here’s a uni malfunction we all missed from bowl season. Jim Pericotti writes, “Working on a project, and I came across the attached picture from the Military Bowl, Virginia Tech vs. Cincinnati. Looks like the 4 on the front of #45 is peeling off. Didn’t remember seeing this in the ticker, so I apologize if it was already discussed.” … Ohio State’s Terry McLaurin was sporting a Raiders logo on his Buckeye helmet (from Old Time Football). Why, you may ask? “Gruden is coach of the North team and his staff is giving them out after big plays,” notes Bob Johnson. Here’s another one on Notre Dame’s Drue Tranquill (from Oscar Buck Wilde). And finally here are a couple more hats with Raider stickers from the Senior Bowl (from Gene Sanny). … Finally, a gift for Husker fans who can’t choose between Ameer Abdullah/Stanley Morgan and Kenny Bell (from Lincoln Arneal).

Hockey News: If you look real closely at this gathering of the NFL mascots, you’ll notice the Capitals mascot is wearing a Stanley Cup ring (good spot by Robby Aces). … From Friday evening: check out the inside lining of Henrik Lundqvist’s jacket (thanks to Josh Claywell and Al N. Kreit). … Tweeter Louis noticed the collar on the Ducks All Star sweater is solid orange, and not their normal multi colored collar (for comparison). … Check out this cool mask on Gary “The Cobra” Simmons (from Goat Jerseys). So much to love in that pic: Old school brown leather glove, blocker (and one can assume pads), fiberglass painted mask, Seals uni. Nice! … Last night, the Green Bay Gamblers wore Packers-themed uniforms (thanks, Paul). … Yesterday, Michigan and Penn State went color vs. color at the Garden (from Brett Sosnik).

NBA/Other/College Hoops News: From the one and only Jimmer Vilk: “Cleveland Priests’ basketball jerseys…nice use of a cross for a t.” … The Illawarra Hawks wore uniforms in tribute to defunct rugby league team Illawarra Steelers (from E P Conrad). … Yesterday, Northwestern hoops wore some special shoes (from Northwestern Basketball). … Looks like Xavier is reintroducing the “Running Man” logo (from Josh Claywell and Matthew Weber). … Iowa State and Ole Miss both wore alternates for their SEC/Big 12 Challenge matchup in Oxford on Saturday, creating an anthracite-for-anthracite’s-sake vs. powder blue matchup (from Kary Klismet). … Reader John Muir noticed the scorebug was confusing too: “Iowa State (Gray uniforms, red in the scorebug) at Ole Miss (Light blue uniforms, navy blue in the scorebug). At least the Ole Miss floor border matches the marker.” He adds, “What’s the point of trying anymore?” … Andrew Cosentino writes, “In a hideous color vs color matchup, Virginia Tech wore PFPS while Syracuse wore orange. It’s tough to watch.” Here’s why. A few twitter folks seem to agree. Yep.

Soccer News: The Portland Timbers tweeted out two photos Friday teasing their new 2019 jersey. The Timbers are expected to officially unveil their new kit in the coming weeks. … Check out these concepts for Tottenham Hotspur (from Terence Kearns). #COYS! … “The 7 team Canadian Premier League kicks off its inaugural season in 2019,” writes wade Heidt. “CPL Commissioner David Clanachan indicated that supplier Macron is designing 14 unique home and away kits. They will be unveiled in early April. He is stating CPL will be one of the few leagues that will have custom-made kits league-wide.” … Phoenix Rising FC have new kits (from Adam Vitcavage). Here’s another look (from Ed Żelaski).

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Comments (43)

    The blue on orange reminds me of the Mets 2005 BP jerseys:

    I actually think they should go back to orange Spring Trainjng/BP jerseys to distinguish them from their blue home alternate.

    I have that BP and was a guide for how the blue/white/black drop shadow would look on the sweater. Which was awesome! Black Drop Shadow 4 Life!

    All NHL teams had their standard sweater crests rendered in B&W for the allstar game except the Rangers who had their crest logo not the diagonal Rangers. It looked good.

    I don’t like the Mets but I love that hockey sweater. Was there ever an explanation for why the Mets use glacier twill? It’s a relatively small detail that doesn’t show up on TV and in most pictures but it’s one of those little things that stand out when you see it.

    The Mets have been using regular twill since 2012..they started using glacier twill in 1997. At the time their home and road uniforms (not the white and eventual black alts) were made by AIS so it could have been a decision made by them. I highly doubt that their old clubhouse manager Charlie Samuels demanded it…

    I guess because it was so cool looking, Gary Simmons did wear the same cobra mask with a couple other NHL uniforms.

    After the Seals moved, wore it with the Cleveland Barons:


    Also as a member of the Los Angeles Kings:


    Also if you look closely at the gathering of NHL mascots, Calgary’s Harvey the Hound is the only one who is shirtless.

    Phil, why are you giving that Jets leak (and those who spread it) any sort of credence? You know it’s fake, I know it’s fake, my dog knows it’s fake. But you still link a clickbait factory and give them what they want: clicks.

    Just because it’s uniform “news” doesn’t mean you have to link it. A little discretion goes a long way.

    Regarding the Pto Boel helmets – it depended on the year and the kind of helmet the player used. Early on they repainted, but by 1977 some players got new helmets – Helmet Hut has a 1977 red helmet for Randy Gradshire (sp?) of the Broncos. Also players who wore clear shell helmets like Roger Staubach would wind up with new ones because it they were painted on the inside of the shell.

    Thanks for sharing the story of that great DIY, Joe and Tezza!

    Phil, have you ever shared the story behind the Long Island Curling Club pants? Of all the various club gear I’ve seen, including lots of rinks with matching pants of one kind or another, this is the first time I’ve seen custom club pants.

    Maybe I’m out of the loop on these things but why is there a “warning” that one of the links is the Washington Post?

    WaPo allows users a few free clicks and then harangues the user to subscribe. some folks may thus want to ration their WaPo clicks

    The Pro Bowl game, which no one will watch, is today.

    Actually, this is not true. I don’t watch the Pro Bowl, you don’t watch the Pro Bowl, nobody we know watches the Pro Bowl. But there must be plenty of people we don’t know who watch because, as of two years ago, it was the highest-rated cable TV show that day and the fourth-rated show on TV that day. Last year, it beat the NHL All-Star Game head to head.



    Is it just me? Or does the image of #3 for Iowa State in the photo vs. Ole Miss look digitally altered to black and white?

    Nolan Ryan is/was the Express, not Experss.

    Expos’ footage was magnifique. Rusty Staub, sans undershirt, cracks a double. The cute usherette. Très bien!

    That Honus Wagner ‘Bradley’ ad used to on display on the second floor of the Hall of Fame. They removed it a few years ago when they renovated the timeline display.

    while i’m duly impressed by the project in today’s lede, I like the Mr Met crest better

    Was just going to say that; beautiful DIY project, but if I were making one, I’d do Mr. Met, because he looks awesome on a hockey sweater!

    I also like the straight NOBs a little more (unless you’re going to do Rangers-style vertical arching), and think they’d look even better if the NOB went inside the shoulder yoke like the Sabres used to do.

    Still, that’s a beautiful sweater. If some Mets played in a hockey game for charity or something, you could outfit them in those and anyone would be impressed.

    Nice pants, Phil, great jersey, Tezza, and wonderful paintings, gentlemen. A round of applause for all of you!

    Joe Kapp in the frigid temps, back when the Vikes played outdoors.

    I got used to the Lions playing indoors after a few years but I still can’t wrap my head around the Vikings having a dome. Season ticket holders may disagree with me but it just seems wrong. Oh, and Bring Back The Single-Bar.

    What else seems wrong: a $5billion stadium. At least it’s multipurpose and privately funded. Still…just stay in the Coliseum.

    Here’s a great look at AFC helmets and NFC helmets, back when they were conference-specific

    Just before I got rid of my electric football set I was going to paint two Pro Bowl teams in the early 80s style with the individual helmets. But if I ever get back into that I may opt for the 70s style. Loved those conference helmets.

    The New Jets uniforms shown are fake/photoshopped. I found the original source on the second pic here: link

    And the account that posted the concepts 5 days ago: link

    He said gouache”technique” today, which it is (just one of many techniques used by artists), but it’s not watercolors at all. I will make sure specify more clearly on future submissions.

    Gene, I love your gouache creations! Any chance that your Joe Kapp is available for sale? I’m still upset that my Vikings and Joe parted ways after the Super Bowl IV loss to Kansas City.

    There’s a gentleman in England actually that contacted me through Facebook about buying it. I’m trying to figure out shipping cost, but then off it goes across the pond. Thank you for the interest :)

    Last year the Pro Bowl had a 5.3 rating / easily beating the NBA all star game (4.3), MLB all star game (2.1) and NHL all star game (1.3)

    And I think that would have beaten any nonsports show on the nets last week

    So someone is watching.

    The Islanders should wear that Mets jersey as their alternate. It’s better than any they have had.

    Gene, how can I get that gorgeous Joe Kapp gouache creation from you???

    Message me on Facebook and I’ll keep you in mind for another one… I have a different post selected already where he’s handing off to a running back that I want to paint.

    Thanks for the replies, Gene. I guess I’ll finally have to break down and join Facebook. :)

    You misspelled “Rangers”!!!

    But there’s the issue–there’s no clear alignment between hockey fandom and baseball fandom in New York. And Rangers and Islander fans pretty much hate the other team. So either way you upset a good part of your fan base. As a Mets/Rangers fan, I would LOVE to have that jersey, because the diagonal “New York” does suggest the Rangers.

    Went back to my son’s pictures of the Military Bowl (damn that game was a soaker) #45’s jersey was fine earlier in the game.


    John Candy used to do a running character on SCTV named Harry The Guy With a Snake On His Face. I wonder if he was inspired by Gary “The Cobra” Simmons. Here’s a taste:

    Re: Jets uniforms
    Even if they are fake, I must say I LIKE those! I’m by no means a Jets fan but I like a futuristic look.

Comments are closed.