Subplot’s safety gear designs make strides in market

Project: CycLite (cycle gear) and StrideLite (running gear); Client: Yanosan, Mill Creek, Wash.; Agency: Subplot Design, Vancouver; Creative directors: Roy White, Matthew Clark; Photographer: Total Graphics (product shots); Printer: Torham (packaging)

Project: CycLite (cycle gear) and StrideLite (running gear); Client: Yanosan, Mill Creek, Wash.; Agency: Subplot Design, Vancouver; Creative directors: Roy White, Matthew Clark; Photographer: Total Graphics (product shots); Printer: Torham (packaging)

The concept

Yanosan tasked Subplot with designing the brand identity and

packaging for the company’s cycle and running gear with two goals in mind: fashion and functionality.

The strategy

According to Ian Bouchard, CEO, Yanosan, feedback he received from retailers and sports enthusiasts revealed the problem with most cycling and running gear: they’re not cool. He describes StrideLite, for example, as ‘an existing brand of particularly lame industrial safety products.’ Yanosan wanted the package and identity design of CycLite and StrideLite to play with the ‘iconography of safety’ in a cool way that made users feel good about themselves.

‘We wanted it to totally stand apart.’ That it does, via a bright yellow motif that, according to Matthew Clark, principal at Subplot, complements an electro luminescent light product new to sports wear.

The brand identity focuses on stylizing familiar icons such as

warning and street signs, and accompanying text runs to the witty and humorous: ‘You can run, but you can’t hide’ and CycLite’s main line: ‘You will see the light.’

Why design matters

Although StrideLite was a previously existing brand, both the redesigns are relatively new to the market. CycLite rolled out this month and StrideLite launched in September. Bouchard says

‘thousands’ of units for StrideLite have been sold and that the

product is already backordered.

‘In the U.S. we have retailers approaching us who haven’t even seen a sales sheet,’ says Bouchard. ‘They’ve seen the product and it answers the question they have, which is that their customers don’t want to look like knobs when they’re running.’