Responses by Zulu Alpha Kilo.
Background: During Pride Month, the National Hockey League (NHL) decided to ban all Pride-related jerseys. To stand against its decision, we created the “Team Pride” jersey, stitched from uniforms across the league as a symbol of inclusivity. The goal of this initiative was to spark conversation around acceptance in hockey and, ultimately, bring Pride jerseys back to the NHL.
Design thinking: At a time when the league felt like an intolerant place, we wanted to show all hockey players that they have allies ready to support them. No player should feel excluded from hockey on the basis of their sexuality or gender expression.
Challenges: One of the limiting factors for this project was a tight budget. Luckily, we were able to find vendors and artists willing to work with us because of the important cause behind the project. Support for Pride in the NHL helped us bring this idea to life.
New lessons: As the story developed in the news, we learned that many high-profile players and organizations also disagreed with the NHL’s decision to ban Pride jerseys. This helped build support for our cause and spur on the initiative.
Visual influences: First and foremost, we wanted the jersey to closely resemble the progress flag so that we had a clear symbol of pride and support. Secondly, we wanted the exhibit itself to look similar to something you might see inside the Hockey Hall of Fame to catch the attention of passersby outside the Hall of Fame.
Time constraints: After the news of the NHL ban, we raced to produce the jersey as quickly as possible to stay topical. We needed to find all the necessary NHL jerseys, stitch them together into a new jersey, and then display it in the right case and location. Then, of course, shoot it all and edit it into an online video. It was a sprint but something we felt was necessary to get this idea into the world and rally behind an important cause.