14th February 2018

SuperCircuits Series – design notes

At T-lab we like to put a bit of ambiguity into our graphic t-shirts. So its not always immediately clear what the design is about. We do it because its good to have a design that’s thought provoking, and also it gives us some freedom in our design, so we can produce something that looks different.

Our SuperCircuits series has been a great success – and it uses this same approach. We wanted to create a t-shirt that said ‘motorsport’, but not in too obvious a way. The design uses shapes, hints and suggestions to explain itself.


Anatomy of a SuperCircuit design…


Our first SuperCircuit shirt used the Italian temple of speed, Monza, as a starting point.

The first thing to catch the eye is the outline of the track. Some petrol-heads will recognise it as Monza, but there are plenty of car fans out there who won’t (we know, we’ve asked). So, first question, is it Monza, is it even a race track?

At the top of the design is a big M. Could M stand for Monza? So its a clue (we’re beginning to sound like Keith Lemon).

Next along – ‘pista veloce’ is that Italian? If so, another hint. (It is Italian – it means ‘high speed track’). And then, well, a map of Italy. So it probably is Monza, but most people won’t have got all the clues and will have had to do a bit of detective work to get there. And you might feel like asking the wearer, just to be sure. So not only a great looking t-shirt – it’s also a conversation starter : )

Finally the track itself is coloured like the Italian flag. This adds colour and spark to the t-shirt. The Tricolore always looks good and it carries with it a whole host of cultural connotations, especially when connected with anything motorsport.

Each of our SuperCircuit shirts has some small variation on this design, but they always follow the same overall theme – a good looking shirt that needs to be looked at more than once to be understood. Different people could look at it and come away with different conclusions – like an abstract painting.

And that’s a good thing.