Zen and the Art of.....WHA Jerseys?

May 16, 2012 8 Comments

 

(Editor's Note: Longtime uniform industry expert at first Mitchell & Ness and now as president of Pro League Authentics, Ray Jannelli shares his personal, inside story on the creation of the nostalgia NHL and WHA jerseys, which eventually led to Ray developing the "Vintage Hockey" series honoring the Original Six NHL clubs. 

In the two previous installments, Ray wrote about the successful re-creation of 1970s NHL jerseys, and today shares his tale of the long gone, but certainly not forgotten to hockey purists, World Hockey Association…)

By Ray Jannelli

After the Casey's shipment of 1970s era NHL jerseys sold out at the 129 Walnut St. (Center City Philadelphia) retail store, my attention turned to the World Hockey Association.

The WHA was a major hockey league that functioned from 1972 to 1979, ending when four teams merged into the NHL in '79, the Edmonton Oilers, Hartford Whalers, Quebec Nordiques, and Winnipeg Jets.

Good teams, great players, and very good games.

WHA jerseys in 1989 were almost as rare as vintage NHL jerseys. I say "almost" because there was one company manufacturing a limited selection of the WHA league sweaters, ProJoy Ltd.

ProJoy was owned by the DeForest brothers and their company was located in Guelph, Ontario, Canada.  ProJoy specialized in International hockey team jerseys as well as the aforementioned WHA line.

The Deforest brothers were characters; they reminded me of SCTV's Bob and Doug McKenzie. I thought if I ever visited their jersey manufacturing facility, I imagined it would be strewn with jelly donuts and Canadian beer, with Rush (the band) blasting in the background.

Approximately 12 WHA team jerseys were made, and they were very nice quality sweaters constructed with a heavy polyester mesh, double elbows, and shoulders with cover stitching.

The ProJoy "cut" was more of a street cut as opposed to a pro cut (made for pads). Jerseys came blank but included the front jersey cresting.  The actual WHA crests were tackle twill and/or embroidered.  ProJoy offered tackle twill and screen-printed crests.

I purchased all 12 teams ProJoy made available.  There were 26 teams in the WHA's existence. All 14 styles sold within two months. Again, it was instant market validation.

Do customers remember the league and teams?  Or, are the jerseys so obscure and striking that they just sell themselves?

The teams I brought in were the Houston Aeros, Michigan Stags, Toronto Toros, Ottawa Nationals, Philadelphia Blazers, Chicago Cougars, Minnesota Fighting Saints, Phoenix Roadrunners, Denver Spurs, Cincinnati Stingers, New York Golden Blades and Raiders, and WHA All-Star jerseys for the eastern and western conferences.

As I look back, the WHA jerseys attracted and generated a base of hockey clientele that frequents Pro League Authentics to this day.

I thought that I could spec out and design a better quality WHA jersey at that time, complete with the proper cresting and with player’s names and numbers. I had researched that Pederson's in Minnesota used to manufacture WHA jerseys, and the company actually supplied teams directly including the near-by Fighting Saints.

Was Pederson's still operating in 1989-90? And, if they were, would they still have the original specs and patterns?

In the next installment: The conclusion of the WHA jersey development, and the beginning of The Lord Stanley Closet Collection.  Look for Ray’s next piece in early June only on Authentically Speaking. 

++++++++++ 

(Photo credit: Screen shot of Fox Sports Florida)

Hallelujah: And for the 36th game, the team shall wear orange caps.  On a nondescript Tuesday night, mid May home game against the Pirates, the Miami Marlins finally wore their much- buzzed-about-when-they-were-introduced last November, orange on-field caps. 

Regular readers know we’re been calling for orange caps almost daily for a couple of weeks now, so imagine our surprise when we went to check last evening and finally saw the team take the new field in orange accessories.

And, the hats looked great with the all-white uniform and orange version of the Marlins Park inaugural season patch.   What didn’t look so good, staying with the black batting helmet. 

Thanks for listening, Marlins!

++++++++++

A Reminder: For more news about Pro League Authentics and musings on the world of sports uniforms, Like our Facebook page and follow us @PLAphilly.

 

 

 




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Size Charts

Select your brand and style to read more about how your purchase will fit:

American Needle fitted hats | '47 Brand hats | '47 Brand apparel | Majestic apparel | Majestic jerseys | Red Jacket apparel | Junk Food apparel | Next Level apparel (Shibe Originals)

Use these tips as a general guide when finding your measurements:

 

American Needle Fitted Hats

If you do not know your size, first determine where on your head you want to wear your hat. Usually it is worn about a half-inch to an inch above the eyebrows and/or just above the ears. Have a friend hold the tape measure (cloth, plastic, or download a printable version here) at the point where you want the hat to rest on your head.  Insert the tip of your little finger between the tape and your head.  Record the measurement and find your Fitted Hat size using the chart below.  This should provide you with a comfortable fit.

 

'47 Brand Hats

 

47 Brand Adjustable Hats Size Chart Size Hat Size Circumference (cm)
Adjustable Hats Men's 6 7/8 - 7 5/8 55 - 61
Women's 6 5/8 - 7 1/4 53 - 58
Youth 6 5/8 - 7 1/8 53 - 57

 

47 Brand Fitted Hats Size Chart Size Hat Size Circumference (cm)
Fitted Hats XX Small 6 1/2 - 6 5/8 52 - 53
X Small 6 3/4 54
Small 6 7/8 - 7 55 - 56
Medium 7 - 7 1/8 56 - 57
Large 7 1/4 58
X Large 7 3/8 - 7 5/8 59 - 61
XX Large 7 5/8 - 7 3/4 61 - 62
XXX Large 7 7/8 63
XXXX Large 8 64
XXXXX Large 8 1/8 65

 

47 Brand Stretch Fit Hats Size Chart Size Hat Size Circumference (cm)
Stretch Fit Fitted Hats Youth 6 1/2 - 6 5/8 52 - 53
Small / Medium 6 7/8 - 7 55 - 56
Medium / Large 7 1/8 - 7 3/8 57 - 59
Large / X Large 7 1/2 - 7 5/8 60 - 61
One Size Fits All 7 - 7 1/2 56 - 60

 

47 Brand Knit Hats Size Chart Hat Size Circumference (cm)
Knit Hats Youth 6 1/2 - 6 3/4 52 - 54
One Size Fits All 6 7/8 - 7 1/2 55 - 60

 

'47 Brand Apparel

 

 
47 Brand Men's Size Chart S M L XL XXL
Neck 14"-14.5" 15"-15.5" 16"-16.5" 17"-17.5" 18"-18.5"
Shoulder 21" 22" 23" 24" 25"
Chest 36"-38" 39"-41" 42"-44" 45"-47" 48"-50"
Waist 28"-30" 31"-33" 34"-36" 37"-39" 40"-42"

 

47 Brand Women's Size Chart S M L XL
Size 2-4 6-8 8-10 10-12
Shoulder 14.25" 15.25" 16.25" 17.25"
Bust 32"-34" 35"-36" 37"-38" 39"-42"
Waist 26"-27" 28"-29" 30"-31" 32"-33"

 

 

Majestic apparel

Men's Sizing (measurements in inches)
  S M L XL XXL 3XL 4XL
Chest 34-36 38-40 42-44 46-48 52-52 54-56 58-60
Waist 28-30 32-34 36-38 40-42 44-46 48-50 52-54
Hip 34-36 38-40 42-44 46-48 50-52 54-56 58-60
Sleeve 32-33 33-34 34-35 35-36 36-36 1/2 36 1/2-37 37-37 1/2
Neck 14-14 1/2 15-15 1/2 16-16 1/2 17-17 1/2 18-18 1/2 19-19 1/2 20-20 1/2

 

Women's Sizing (measurements in inches)
  XS S M L XL 1X 2X
Size 0-2 4-6 8-10 12-14 16-18 16W-18W 20W-22W
Chest 32-33 34-35 36-37 38-40 41 1/2-43 1/2 43-45 47-49
Waist 24-25 26-27 28-29 30-32 33 1/2-35 1/2 36-38 39-41
Hip 34 1/2-35 1/2 36 1/2-37 1/2 38 1/2-39 1/2 40 1/2-42 1/2 44-46 46-48 49-51
Sleeve 29 1/4 30 30 3/4 31 1/2 32 32 1/2 33

 

Youth Sizing (measurements in inches)
  S M L XL XXL 3XL
Size 6-8 10-12 14-16 18-20 20 22
Chest 24-26 28-30 32-34 36-38    
Waist 21-23 25-27 29-31 33-35 37-39 40-42

 

 

 

Majestic Jerseys

Adult Men's Replica Jersey Sizing  
Jersey Size Small Medium Large X Large XX Large
Neck (diameter of neck) 6.5 6.75 7 7.25 7.5
Chest (underarm to underarm) 20 1/2 22 1/2 24 1/2 26 1/2 28 1/2
Sleeve (back of inside neck to end of middle sleeve) 8 1/2 8 3/4 9 9 1/4 9 1/2

 

Apparel Sizing Tips:

Use these tips as a general guide when finding your measurements:

Chest/Bust: With your arms at your sides, measure around the fullest part of your chest, across shoulder blades and under arms.

Waist: To measure your natural waistline, wrap the tape so it intersects your navel. Keep tape flat, but comfortably loose.

Hips: Stand with your heels together and measure the fullest part of your hips. Make sure the measuring tape is level all the way around your body.

Inseam: Stand up straight, and start the tape measure high in your crotch. Straighten the tape down the inside of your leg to the bottom of your ankle.

 

 

Red Jacket apparel

 

 

Junk Food apparel

 

Next Level apparel (Shibe Originals)

General Size Neck
(in inches)
Chest
(in inches)
Waist
(in inches)
Arm
(in inches)
Small 14-14.5 34-36 28-30 31.5-32
Medium 15-15.5 38-40 32-34 32.5-33
Large 16-16.5 42-44 36-38 33.5-34
X-Large 17-17.5 46-48 40-42 34.5-35
XX-Large 18 – 18.5 50-52 44-46 35.5-36