top of page

The Red One

When founded in 1885, Luton’s first colours were pink and blue halves but between the years 1889/92 the home kit was changed to red and unsurprisingly the club quickly earned the nickname ‘the Reds‘. After some spells in blue the club would eventually choose white for their home shirt in the 1920's. Luton continued to play away games if required in red. A tradition lost with the advent of orange being added to the colour scheme in the 1970's

Fast forward to the 1988/89 season. This particular year the club had released just 2 shirts, a white home shirt, and a blue away shirt. Luton's first away fixture was to be against Sheffield Wednesday, realising there was going to be a colour clash, the club together with adidas produced a third shirt that would hark back to Luton's days in red.


The match worn shirts for the 88/89 season were embroidered with Littlewoods cup winners centred around the Adidas logo on the shirt and the new red shirt would be the same for this production run but more on that later!

Image courtesy of

Historical Kits

Luton went on to Lose 1 nil at Sheffield Wednesday. 

I have always believed the team all wore short sleeves, but you can see Steve Foster in the background who has long sleeves on, so that has now been proven otherwise. 

A colour clash wouldn't arise again until almost the end of the season when Luton was due to play QPR. 

What happened next can only be put down to conjecture as no one seems to have concrete facts, so... With a difference in weather and with only Steve Foster wearing long sleeves in the Sheffield Wednesday game, more shirts were made for QPR away this time all in long sleeve. 


I don't manufacturer shirts but if I did I would just remake from the original pattern. For some reason, Adidas didn't do this and it was easy to spot what they did differently. The Littlewoods winners embroidery was this time centred around the club badge.


Interestingly both the short and long sleeves were worn for this fixture. against QPR.

bottom of page