#BuckFiftyADay Since March, 2014

#BuckFiftyADay Since March, 2014

Saturday, March 23, 2013

A Revealing Q & A with Leather Head designer Jon Contino

Jon is New York through and through.
This past week, Leather Head Baseball proudly unveiled its new logos and brand markings as created by renowned Brooklyn artist Jon Contino. Our instructions to Jon were, basically, that we had no instructions. We knew his work and loved it, so we wanted to let his creative juices flow.

Without saying a word, we knew Jon "got" our product line. Leather Head Baseball Gloves are going to be the choice of the no-BS ballplayer. Our glove designs are classic and will remind men of a certain age of the gloves used in the 70s and 80s, made of the best leather, but not overly-decorated, or overly colorful. We'll have two colors. Tan and black. You want a red or blue glove, go somewhere else. Anyway, we wanted Jon to have some fun...and from what he's told us, he had a ball.

Before the reveal on Facebook, I had a little Q & A with Jon, just to get a look inside his baseball-loving heart. It's pretty clear he shares our vision and passion.

LEATHER HEAD: What is your favorite Major League team and why?

Needle pulling lace to infinity.
JC: I'm a die-hard Yankees fan, most likely because my father is a Yankees fan as well. I started watching games with him early on in my childhood and became a huge baseball fan at that point. Unfortunately, the Yankees were terrible in the mid-80s, so I never knew the Yankees the way people did before me or even now. I can remember them playing double-headers against the Indians and losing both games all the time. Cut to 94 and there was finally hope for the playoffs...then the strike. I never thought it would happen again, but thankfully I only had to wait two more years for a World Series and we all know where they've been since then, so even though it's not true, I feel like I've been with the team on their rise to the top. In reality, they just had a brief cooling off period that I was born into, haha. The other part, and more of the reason I love them now, is the history behind the team. I always wore #7 when I was a kid and my grandfather and uncles used to tell me about Mickey Mantle and how he was one of the greatest hitters of all time. I naturally felt like I had to keep #7 with me as long as possible if I wanted to be any good. Then as I got deeper and deeper into the game and developed more of a love, I learned how my favorite announcer Phil Rizzuto was a little guy who played shortstop and succeeded despite everyone telling him otherwise. This of course resonated with me as well being that I was always a smaller guy and played shortstop as well. Then you have your Gehrigs, Ruths, Munsons, and of course Donnie Baseball. The players all had such a mythical air about them, and it always felt like it was because of the pinstripes and interlocking NY. The Yankees always embody everything good about baseball in my mind. Always have and always will!
When you look into your glove.

LEATHER HEAD: I think I see where this is going, but what's your favorite uniform and why? 
JC: All my answers will be Yankees first, mostly because I feel like they're the most pure team to still be playing the game. No names on the back of the uniform, no crazy amount of home and away jerseys. Simple white with pintstripes and grey away with the words "New York" across the chest. 

JC: Again, my favorite is the classic navy Yankees cap, but there are definitely other favorites of mine. The latest Red Sox hat is pretty great in all navy with just the socks icon on the front. I also love the classic Orioles bird face, but who doesn't? The newest Indians revival "C" hat is awesome too. I love the simplicity of these and none of them feel like "new sports design" that plagues football and basketball branding.

LEATHER HEAD: And...what is it about the game that you love the most? 
JC: The fact that you can enjoy baseball from so many different perspectives is what really grabs my heart. You can go to a ball game on a beautiful summer day or a crisp fall night, get some great food, and alternate between relaxing and yelling all in the same sitting. You can play it with a huge group of people on a nice field or a few on the street or schoolyard in the form of stickball or Wiffleball. It's not overly exhausting so you can play it every day, but it's also one of the most heart-pounding games when you get to that 8th inning and you're still down by 3 runs. Aside from all the great aspects of the game itself, it's also spawned some of the best characters in history and the general design factor that has grown with it is something I'm completely enamored with. Every single aspect of baseball is great.

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