Behind the Design of Official Match Jerseys for Indonesia's National Team 2024

On Monday (18/03), Erspo launched the official jersey for Indonesia's National Team 2024 for home and away matches. In this collaborative project between Erspo and the Football Association of Indonesia (PSSI), Makna Creative was responsible for designing Erspo's branding and logo, as well as determining the philosophical concept and design of the official jersey for Indonesia's National Team 2024. From pattern design, colors, to materials, Makna Creative worked alongside Erspo, leveraging their experience in sports apparel design. Speaking exclusively to Grafis Masa Kini, Ernanda Putra, Creative Director of Makna Creative, unveiled the creative process behind the design of the Official Match Jersey for Indonesia's National Team 2024 Home and Away.

This collaboration began when Muhammad Sadad, Founder of Erigo, contacted Ernanda Putra in October 2023 regarding the need for a conceptual name and branding for a new sports apparel brand Sadad was forming. Their meeting unexpectedly opened up a new opportunity for collaboration on the official jerseys for Indonesia's National Team 2024. "I was tasked with overseeing the entire creative process from the inception of Erspo and its new collaboration with PSSI. I also brought the Makna Creative team into this project," explained Ernanda, who then introduced her team: Jordy Yohannes and Alexander Averil as Jersey and Jacquard Designers, Irvesha Diani as Typographer and Designer, and Stephen Oei as Project Manager.

Given the responsibility of the project, Ernanda and the Makna Creative team embarked on extensive research, recognizing its national and even international scale. According to Ernanda, research consumed the most time throughout the entire process of designing the jerseys for Indonesia's National Team 2024. "With a timeframe of approximately one month, we had to complete the entire research process; focus group discussions, conversations with the National Team, production partners, distribution, the Research and Development team, and personally listening to the opinions of Indonesian football supporters," Ernanda explained. It's worth noting that the production of this official jersey was also racing against time for Indonesia's match against Vietnam on March 21, 2024.

During the research process, designers had to pay close attention to crucial elements. In the conceptual design stage, Ernanda and the Makna Creative team had to understand and adhere to guidelines, especially FIFA regulations, which are stringent regarding player uniform rules on the field. Additionally, regulations covering the color combinations for home, away, third, and goalkeeper jerseys had to be registered well in advance. In the initial stages of design initiation, there were numerous back-and-forth processes, Ernanda said, because they had to comply with FIFA regulations. Ernanda then illustrated a case in point, "For instance, the players’ names and numbers on the back must not be in gold to maintain contrast and readability. Many ideas were eventually toned down due to various regulations, but we tried to maximize the design." He also emphasized that the execution of this project was collaborative. Suggestions, criticisms, and approvals from all involved parties had to be considered, including those from Erick Tohir, the Chairman of PSSI, who provided significant input that was ultimately applied in the design implementation. "Furthermore, input from Erspo's product development expertise played a crucial role in the design development of these National Team jerseys. It wasn't just about design or visuals, but the design of these jerseys also considered the technical aspects of fabric processing to stitching techniques that ultimately affect the players' comfort on the field," Ernanda added.


The awareness of the importance of considering all aspects of the jersey design prompted the Product Development and Marketing teams to fly to Japan and Thailand to conduct research and ensure that the Indonesia National Team 2024 jersey met global standards. "We are aware that this jersey is not just a football shirt but will become a legacy that we leave for Indonesia. Therefore, its results must be accountable in terms of athletic performance as well as from a fashion point of view."

Following in-depth research, the philosophy of "Gemuruh Kesetiaan" (Roar of Loyalty) emerged as the foundation for designing the Indonesia National Team 2024 jerseys. "The idea is simple; we want to emphasize the message of the supporters' loyalty as the '12th player.' We all (the Indonesian people) become an important part of Indonesia's long journey to success," Ernanda explained. This philosophy was translated into a pattern design inspired by the roar of supporters in stadiums like Gelora Bung Karno (GBK) and all over the archipelago, both supporting Indonesia from home and directly in stadiums from Sabang to Merauke. "We embedded the resounding voices into the Jacquard pattern design of the Indonesia National Team jersey with the hope that the voices and spirit would resonate in the hearts of every Indonesian National Team player fighting on the field, just like the genuine support from all corners of the nation ready to fight for Indonesia," Ernanda elaborated further. Quoting Italian photographer, Franco Fontana, he said, "Like Michelangelo, I want to remove everything unnecessary," Ernanda aimed to emphasize visual simplicity, similar to previous designs by Makna Creative. "Despite the rather long philosophy, we ensured that it wouldn't compromise the Red and White jersey. The design was still made timeless and simple by strengthening the execution details."

The design of the Indonesia National Team 2024 jerseys was based on collective decisions. All parties, including Makna Creative, Erspo, and PSSI, were involved until the design was approved by Erick Thohir, the Chairman of PSSI, and the Indonesian government. The Makna Creative and Erspo teams also had the opportunity to directly fit the jerseys to the players of the Indonesian National Team and listen to the feedback needed to strengthen the design of these official jerseys, from comfort, flexibility, material types, weight, emblem stitching processes to tags. According to Ernanda, the players of the Indonesian National Team gave positive responses. The feedback from the players was constructive and could be executed by the design and production teams. In the design process, detailed considerations were applied to all aspects, including color. "We meticulously selected the Garuda emblem from a mixture of gold, red, and white colors. We revised it several times to get the right colors. We deliberately didn't use black because it's not an Indonesian color," said Ernanda.

Not only color, but font selection was also carefully considered. Ernanda explained, "The design was complemented by the selection of bold and structural fonts, inspired by the shape of the Gelora Bung Karno roof designed in the 1950s." The numbers on the jerseys were inspired by the "crest" of Garuda Indonesia. "To balance the simple jersey design, for the player names, we chose the Makna Sans font that was modified to fit well with the numbers," Ernanda said. With these decisions, there were many messages about Indonesian football, national foundations, and the philosophy of the archipelago subtly embedded in the jersey design.

For Ernanda and the Makna Creative team, designing the official jerseys for Indonesia's National Team 2024 was a tremendous challenge. "From the beginning, we knew the expectations would be very high because this jersey represents the voices of the loyal supporters of the National Team," said Ernanda. Nonetheless, both Makna Creative and Erspo remained steadfast in their commitment to ideas developed through research and collaboration with various stakeholders. "We continue to prioritize simplicity in the final execution, hoping it will be embraced by Indonesia," said Ernanda. The team behind the design of Indonesia's National Team 2024 jerseys also hopes that these jerseys will not only be enjoyed by football fans but also be chosen as a universal fashion product that anyone can wear. "So, we also want to promote the normalization of wearing National Team jerseys as a lifestyle choice," Ernanda concluded.

About the Author

Alessandra Langit

Alessandra Langit is a writer with seven years of diverse media experience. She loves exploring the quirks of girlhood through her visual art and reposting Kafka’s diary entries at night.