Friday, May 20, 2011

Texas T

As many of you know Ironman Texas is this weekend. I wanted to put together something a little different to wish all of our dear friends racing good luck. Texas had been on my schedule for a while. Unfortunately, now that I am not racing I wanted to find a way to show my support since I won’t be able to on the racecourse. Plus… I love designing t-shirts! You can really do whatever you want; the only thing limiting you is your own creativity.

During the process of putting together this fun little project it got Kebby and I thinking.

When it comes to leisurely clothing I am a pretty conservative person. I love our colorful and vibrant gear for when I am exercising, but when I’m not sweating in my clothes I seem to gravitate towards things that are much more simplistic. In fact, Kebby likes to give me a hard time about the fact that I pretty much wear anything that is black, white or in between.

With all that being said, it is very unlikely that you will ever see me wearing an Ironman race shirt. Not that I have anything against ironman t’s (they make for great PJs) but for my own personal style the big graphics and multiple colors are just a little too much for me. However I understand the need for them and why so many people love them. People have every right to be proud of their athletic accomplishments or fond memories of a race they participated in.

So I thought, why don’t we try to make a cute triathlon themed t’s? Not just races but also the lifestyle associated with triathlon. This Texas one has been so fun I would love to do more. Put unique, custom designed graphics on shirts that have a feminine cut and are made of really high-end cotton fabrics. There is nothing better than a super soft well cut t-shirt. I think that is why I spend so much money at James Perse.

We feel like this will be a really fun and creative addition to the SOAS line up. Plus it is not like we are always in spandex so we need some cute t-shirts to wear. Look for custom t-shirts from SOAS coming soon!

Happy racing this weekend!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

What is design?

I recently heard someone say “Design is putting focus where it matters”. I would really have to agree with this statement… especially in terms of SOAS.
I have worked in ad agencies for years and often “where it matters” was not dictated by colleagues or myself but by our clients. This pays the bills but leaves a little to be desired.

Kebby and I have become very dear friends over the years and during this time we saw a very clear need for “putting focus where it matters”. We started thinking about designing Women's triathlon apparel for a completely selfish reason. We didn’t want to train in black shorts and your typical feminine colored tops that were unflattering and didn’t fit correctly. Let’s be honest, running around in a bunch of spandex is nerdy enough as it is… we don’t need to make the situation worse by dressing ourselves in colors that happen to fall on the cotton candy color wheel.

That is when our crash course in clothing design began. After many long hours, mistakes and learning experiences, I feel like we have designed a product that we can be proud of. There is not one inch of our triathlon kit that we have not thought through thoroughly, tested, and retested over and over again. We really put our focus where we thought "it mattered"… in the look, fit, feel, construction, and quality of our materials.

A year and a half later we are now learning that it wasn’t just Kebby and I that wanted something different. Many ladies were experiencing the same wants we were. I have been thinking a lot about this while working on our line expansion for 2012. We have met so many wonderful people this season through SOAS. I just wanted to express how incredibly touched we are by all the kind words and wonderful feedback we have received. Through what I believe is thoughtful design, we have been able to develop great relationships with some amazing people.

These people reaffirm my belief in the importance of design… whatever the medium may be. I truly feel that design matters, and love that these individuals do too.

Cheers to everyone’s training and racing. We can’t wait to show you what we have up our sleeves next!


Some design that has been inspiring me.

The people over at Grove make some of the most amazing products. And yes... I have a custom SOAS iPhone Case!

Another beautiful typography piece by Josh Higgins.

Mount Kimbie's Crooks & Lovers is described as "music for musics sake"
Love the track "Before I Move Off"

Sunday, January 16, 2011

2011: Let's Have Some Fun!

It is a cruel fact of nature: losing fitness happens so quickly, but gaining it is slow and painstaking. Kicking off training for the 2011 season this January has been full of stiff muscles, sore joints, little niggles and general oxygen deprivation. 
It would be easy to dwell on the negative: How did I let myself get this out of shape? Why did I eat all those Christmas cookies? Drink all those New Year’s Eve cocktails? When did running 3 miles become SOOOO difficult?!?! It SUCKS getting older!

But then, we have to stop and think. We are soooo lucky to get to do this stuff. We have the physical ability to swim, bike and run. To get out into nature and MOVE. And this gift HAS to be honored when you see people like Sarah Reinertsen, Scout Bassett and Clayton Treska out there racing. It is our duty to use our physical ability. It doesn’t have to be fast, long or pretty. Just do something. Don’t waste it. You will find out quickly how much you can surprise yourself with your ability.
Besides, how fun is it to get to do this stuff with friends and training partners? How about those folks that push you on the track just when you thought you were about to pull a hammy? What about the girl that cracked a joke that kept you going on the last hour of a long, cold ride? How many glasses of wine have you had with friends discussing your last race or workout? 
And, how many inspiring people have you met along your triathlon journey? Probably more than in the normal course of life (see above mentioned people!). I have met a reverend’s wife and mother-of-five from a small southern town who somehow got the Ironman bug. When I first started out, I trained in Atlanta with a bunch of retired Delta pilots who did about 2-3 Ironmans a year. Average age? About 65!!! I had to catch myself every time I wanted to complain about an ache or pain. How about Kim Rouse at our Master’s Program? She is in the 55-59 AG and she is an Ultraman, twice! Its amazing. And they all started somewhere.
Training and racing is also great because it takes you to places you wouldn’t normally go or see. Steph and I had an amazing breakfast at a teeney BBQ shack in remote Boggy Bayou, FL after Clearwater this last November. We witnessed Zombie Night in Louisville after the Ironman (and we athletes thought we were the only walking wounded!). How about riding up a Volcano in a rainstorm? And on my last trail run - while I may have been squatting to "check my shoelaces" behind a certain shrub ;) -  I found a GPS geocache-ing scavenger hunt box. Yeah, I didn't know what it was either! Look it up:
Anyway, without getting to melodramatic, I just wanted put it out there that everytime you experience negativity in your training or racing, come back to center and realize how great this sport is. How wonderful the experiences. The tough times just toughen you up and the great times can put you on top of the world. Get out there!
Enjoy your training and be good to yourself! Here’s to a fabulous 2011!