Local Company Spotlight: Grafletics (and their awesome Run 503 design)

The Grafletics “Run 503” T-shirt shows off your Portland, running, and even Blazers pride in comfort.

Company: Grafletics

When we first got in touch with Grafletics, it was because we were struck by the awesomeness of their Run 503 shirt (a play on legendary hip hop group – Run DMC). They admitted that while the image was intended for the basketball community, it has started to become adopted by runners as well. For those of us who do the majority of our running in the “503”, it’s just a perfect piece to add to a casualwear collection.

There is something about sports that refines us, challenges us, pushes us to be better than we were before we stepped foot on the court, field or track. Grafletics is a Portland, OR based sport and lifestyle brand that strives to capture the essence of “game time” and weave it into our daily lives.

Founded in late 2013 by Graphic Designer Rick Gilbert, Grafletics is the marriage of two ideals held close to his heart and to the people of the Pacific Northwest – the intensity of protecting home court and the clean subtleness of timeless design.

At the core of Grafletics is the commitment to make unique products that represent what you love most, in an authentic way. We do so by using premium fabrics and customized printing techniques on every item we produce while partnering with like-minded people in our community to build and grown this brand. Ideally when you buy Grafletics, you’re buying a piece of yourself that expresses who you are to the world.

It’s about the sport that’s happening around us 365 days a year. Thanks for coming through and we hope to see you on the courts or in the stands.

Aside from the Run 503 logo, they also have few other great options with local designs, including styles which showcase:

  • Mt. Hood (a simple yet awesome design that trailrunners/hiker may love)
  • PDX Carpet (obviously)
  • Blazers & Timbers (LOTS of designs available)

We are very thankful to Grafletics for letting us see the design first hand.

Who’s House? Run’s House!

Product: RUN 503 hat 
Price: $30
Product Details:

  • Fitted Flex Fit Style
  • Acrylic and wool blend
  • Custom woven label
  • Thick 3D Puff embroidery


  • Small/Medium (6 7/8 – 7 1/4)
  • Large/XL (7 1/4 – 7 5/8)

Impressions (Matt): Many of the same logos also show up in Grafletics’ headwear catalog. It may not be the bucket hat that is synonomous with Run DMC, but it’s awesome nonetheless. The design is Flex Fit with the visual being off center. It’s an awesome addition to any runner’s hat collection.

As someone with a small head (I hover between a size 7 and size 7 1/8, depending on the style), I found even the Small/Medium fitting well, if not a little loose. If you are wondering which size to choose, it may prove wise to size down.

Joe and Kate will talk a bit more about their shirts below.

Product: RUN 503 T-shirt –  mens and womens
Price: $28

Grafletics proudly introduces the RUN 503 Tee. With this design we pay tribute the Portland area code of 503.

Product Details:

  • Athletic fit
  • 100% cotton
  • Color: Black
  • Soft hand feel
  • Water based screen printed ink
  • Designed and printed in Portland, Oregon

Impressions (Joe): I love this shirt! The graphics first caught my eye: A play on the famous Run-DMC logo, repurposed for the Portland area code and our favorite athletic activity. It may actually be inspired by hoops, and a spin-off of the Run-TMC nickname given to the 1989-91 Golden State Warriors of Tim Hardway, Mitch Richmond, and Chris Mullin fame, but it definitely also works as a running slogan. And for devout Blazers fans like me, the shirt can double as a sign of support for our fast-breaking home team.

RUN-503-Tee-WomensThere’s not much to say about the top-quality, tagless T-shirt itself, except that it’s extremely soft cotton and very comfortable! If you’re an old-school runner who can handle non-tech shirts, this one would look pretty sharp in your next 5K. Otherwise it makes an excellent post-race statement or a nice way to show off our sport and city in a casual way. Grafletics offers a great variety of Portland-centric designs that incorporate semi-familiar graphics and colors in unique and creative ways.

Impressions (Kate):

I really like this shirt.  I’ve had it for 5 days now and I’ve worn it 3 times already – once for running miles and twice for running errands!  It’s incredibly soft, the shape is great, the red-on-gray and white-on-gray color combination looks really sharp.  It goes with jeans as well as athletic pants, looks good under a running jacket or under a flannel and is comfortable for the Oregon weather.  As Joe mentioned above, there is no tag to itch the back of your neck or sides, which is definitely a plus!

This shirt works well for running in terms of temperature, but it’s not moisture-wicking and the short sleeves are a little close-in for my liking while running.  However, the material is fairly breathable and it doesn’t flap around with the stride or if the wind should happen to pick up unexpectedly.  As a runner and a mom, I would certainly recommend this shirt and Grafletics in general!


About Author

Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching hockey, going to as many breweries (618) and wineries (152) as he can, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010.

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