Among the many reasons to buy cycling gear from Rapha — carefully considered fit, innovative use of materials, top tier performance during a ride — style often acts as the most enthralling for cyclists. And, Rapha’s scripted five-letter logo and a selective color palette is easily recognized on popular routes around the world; it carries weight. That’s why it’s significant that Rapha just launched Rapha Custom, a new program that lets small groups and local clubs create unique, personalized versions of the brand’s high-performing apparel.
To start, Rapha is offering customization within a selection of its Pro Team and Classic ranges. That includes staple jerseys and bibs but also arm warmers and gilets (the company plans to expand its options over the coming year). And if you’re assuming that these items will come with a limited number of blocked-out areas with select colors and patterns to manipulate, then you’re happily wrong; Rapha Custom lets would-be designers choose from an extensive range of layouts and over 100 colors and patterns. (If that seems daunting, imagine how Alex Valdman feels.)
There are numerous places for company and club logos too, but the Rapha script will remain. In some sense Rapha is putting stock in its loyal fans — there’s no doubt that a lot of ugly jerseys are going to come out of the program. On the other hand, it makes the brand significantly more inclusive. Pro teams including Richard Sachs Cyclocross, DRAPAC and FAST Amsterdam wear Rapha Custom kits, and now weekly riding groups can too.
Rapha’s minimum order is five, larger orders can gain up to 40 percent off and delivery is guaranteed within eight weeks.
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