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Uni Watch reader Tom Roddy is an 11th grade history teacher in Henderson, Nevada. Each year, as part of teaching a unit on the New Deal, he has his students create basketball uniforms for a New Deal-related program or federal agency. The movie-themed design shown above is for the National Film Service, which you can learn more about here. (Some of you may recall that I also featured some of Tom’s students’ designs last year.)
Here’s another one for that same agency — the EHFA — that might be my favorite of the entire batch. Check out the excellent electric cord/plug graphic on the shorts:
I really love these. You can see some additional designs in this gallery:
Using uniforms as a way to help teach history is so awesome. Please join me in thanking Tom Roddy for sharing these with us, and for the important work he does as a teacher.
Update: So many teachers have asked about doing something similar that Tom Roddy has created this public link to the assignment. All educators are welcome to use it!
ITEM! New Premium Article
What you see above is the cover page from a lengthy PowerPoint file that the Mets are using this season to pitch themselves to brands that might want to advertise on the team’s game broadcasts and/or in their ballpark. It covers everything from the green-screen ads behind the plate to ads on the outfield walls, and a lot more. It’s a fascinating document that gives us a behind-the-scenes peek at how such deals are sold.
For this week’s Uni Watch Premium article on Substack, I went through the document, page by page, with longtime Uni Watch reader and ad industry professional Ben Thoma, who had lots of really good insights. The resulting article is a doozy — over 5,000 words — and I’m pretty sure you’ve never seen anything like it.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, lately I’ve been putting some of my houseplants in vintage tin cans, plus I have those new collections of vintage typewriter ribbon cans and moth vaporizer cans, all of which means I’ve been spending a lot of time looking at old can designs on eBay, and I’ve come to a conclusion: Old can designs are really, really cool. They feel playful and industrial simultaneously, and the metal surface really makes the graphics pop.
So I’ve decided that we’re going to have a new daily feature — the Can of the Day. Most days it’ll just be a photo of an old can I spotted on eBay and a sentence or two of text, although I might have more to say about particularly interesting specimens. We’ll see how the project evolves.
I got the idea to do this after spotting the amazing floor wax can shown above (here’s the full listing for it). What a design! I love the colors, the two lobes on the front, the heel-shaped graphic about scuff marks — all of it! I felt the need to share it, and that’s when I thought, “Oh, I could do that every day on Uni Watch.” So that’s what I’m going to do.
I realize some of you probably don’t care about old tin can designs as much as I do, and that’s fine — you can just ignore this section each day. But for those of you who appreciate such things, I look forward to sharing these designs with you. Enjoy!
Update: Proofreader Jerry Wolper found an old TV commercial for this product: