The leather’s ball story
Through its vintage ball’s range, Serigrafball comes back on the sports ball’s history since its creation. From rubber to the most famous models, we share with you its manufacturing secrets.
“From rubber to the 18 leather panels.”
At Serigrafball, we are passionate about the sport from every angle. Carried away by the values of sharing, it is important for us to give each sport a part of its history and to tell it to you through our creations. What better way to go back than to bring the traditional, mythical balls of each sport up to date? Serigrafball remembered the early foot, basketball, and rugby balls and turned them into a range of vintage laced leather balls. Authentic balls reminiscent of matches from another era …
Before being a vintage accessory, the ball has gone through many evolutions. From its creation to its popular character, a symbol of modern competitions, there is a world. Today we return to the history of the most popular sports accessory since the beginnings of team sports.
The ball before the sport
Team sports did not exist as the ball was already used in Chinese military exercises (over three thousand years ago). Made of animal skin filled with hair or feathers, the goal was to send it between two posts, but without a guard! At the same time in Mexico, the Aztecs played tlatchi, with a stone covered with a thick layer of rubber.
Over the centuries, the ball has had to meet various requirements to optimize the practice of sports, starting with its shape. First of all, it must be round, so that it can roll straight after a strike, but it must also bounce, and therefore be able to deform.
It was in the Middle Ages that the ball experienced its first transformation. In response to the previous contradiction, swollen pig bladders are used and the solid core of the object is replaced with air. All you have to do is adjust the inflation pressure to achieve the perfect elasticity.
The games from the era, a mixture of sports we know today, were particularly violent. It was also common for games to stop for lack of a valid player. In addition to the previous requirements, there is a need for a shock-resistant ball. The problem ? the ball must be hollow to bounce, but full so as not to burst in the middle of the game.
Rather than one membrane, the ball will have two. The pig’s bladder is placed in a leather envelope which it stretches when inflated. It is on this principle that most balls are still manufactured today.
Over the years, layers of textiles have come to settle between the leather cover and the molded rubber bladder, ensuring the ball better retains its shape. It is then that the seams of the traditional ball are transformed with the appearance of new sports such as rugby, basketball, and football.
Finally, in 1889, Charles Macintosh company developed the famous soccer ball which inspired our own models. Wrapped in 18 leather panels tightened by a lace, it approaches the perfect ball thanks to its circumference which varies from 68 to 71 cm, and to its weight of 340 to 425 grams.
A few years later, a young German shoemaker began to work with the leather ball. Thanks to its famous Telstar balls, Adidas will become the master supplier in the field of sports balls.