Archive | threadless

03 September 2007 ~ 0 Comments

New Shirt Monday at Threadless: $10 Sale Continues


The $10 sale at Threadless marches on, with a smattering of shirts for the last day of the sale.

After Show is a really great shirt- there’s kind of a melancholy vibe in the way everyone is sweeping up the remains of the musical notes, and it’s a cool touch that one sweeper is whistling. Cap it off with a really nice seventies-inspired color scheme, and this is undeniably a great shirt.

But my favorite of the week has got to be We’re Not Savages. It’s an immaculately styled Lord of the Rings tribute, and the mixture of bold black and white with subtle red shading creates an amazing sense of environment.

Ascending Descent is one that I knew would get printed from the moment I saw it in scoring. It’s well-styled, and I can’t really nitpick it at all… However, I just plain don’t like it. I think I’m reacting to the halftones (which, to me, kind of bring the quality level down) or maybe the angles of the piece just aren’t grabbing me. I don’t know, it’s a puzzler.

The complicated take on a symbolic image is a good idea, and that’s why Roadside Picnic really works for me. While I preferred the color combinations in the original submission, it’s bold enough that I think it would work with just about any set of colors.

A Collection of Flies is another one that I’ve been expecting to see printed. It’s pretty clever, and the artwork is solid. If I were in the market for a flies-pinned-to-a-shirt kind of thing, this would absolutely be the one to get.

I hate Luckiest T-Shirt Ever. There, I said it. It’s a concept that pops up a lot at Threadless, and this is easily one of the worst iterations I’ve seen. It’s honestly kind of mind-boggling to me that it both scored well and got printed. The drawing style is not great, the characterizations of the lucky items are uninspired… I just don’t see a winner here.

Now I Know My ABCs is another that I am just not digging. Why is this a rectangle? To me, the overall shape of this absolutely kills the fun and whimsy a shirt like this should have. That’s just about the only flaw, but it’s such a huge flaw that it destroys the whole shirt for me. The geometry of the letters contrasted with them forming a cool, organic shape would have been amazing, and I weep for the shirt that might have been.

So, it was kind of a disappointing set of shirts for me. Two fantastic shirts, but the rest are less than what I think they could be.

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02 September 2007 ~ 4 Comments

Threadless New Shirt Reviews (Very Belated)


I didn’t post a summary of this weeks new Threadless designs- it seems that natural disasters (flooding, specifically) are one of the few things that can distract me from my t-shirt obsession. But now that that’s been cleared up and my internet connection has been back for a few days, I’m ready to post the huge summary.

First off, I am so glad to see that Unseen Unheard got printed. It was one of my favorites from the Ted Leo competition, and I was pretty disappointed when it didn’t win (though the actual winner, My Classmate, is certainly quite nice as well). Further, the artist of Unseen Unheard is Ed Pincombe, yesterday’s big Uneetee winner. Wow, way to take the internet t-shirt world by storm!

My other favorite of this week’s new tees is Wishless, which is just absolutely gorgeous. It’s a great enough idea that it might have been printed regardless of artistic quality, but the extra effort is evident in the elegant texture work on the dragon.

Strength in Numbers is a Ross Zietz design, so of course it’s already sold out in adult sizes. But it’s not just the superstar name that made this a quick sellout- the colors are masterfully done, and the halftones lend a beautiful subtle shading that takes the piece to the next level. Additionally, the shark’s expression is completely charming.

What can I say about Cat on a Skateboard? How about this- it’s kind of like an adult-oriented update of the shirts kids wore in the eighties. It’s bold, it’s fun, it’s awesome.

Then there’s Stupid Cupid. I admit, I don’t really care for this one. The colors are dull and to me, the characters are so subtly portrayed that they seem pretty lacking in personality. Add a white shirt and this one is pretty much dead to me. (Its close to sold out, though, so clearly others disagree with my assessment.)

Grave of the Fireflies is one that I almost like. Almost. Part of my objection is the color scheme- that shade of brown on back isn’t really doing it for me. There’s also some awkwardness in the way the jar is portrayed- the angle seems unlikely to my eye. The figure in the background also strikes me as unresolved.

Amazon Addiction is alright, and given the number of Tetris-themed submissions that Threadless receives, I guess they were bound to print one eventually. I just hate that it was this one (I’m rather partial to Working Game. Plus, the placement isn’t really ideal- that branch seems way too low.

Stupid Raisins, Stay Out of My Cookies is a great Text Tee. Its bold, child-like qualities are so appealing that I’d be tempted to wear it even though I love raisins.

Unicorn is a great pun with a nice, bold image and a halftone punch that lends extra style to the concept.

Another one with a simple, bold graphic is Bad Apple. The pixelated middle fingers are a great touch, as is the shadow beneath the apple. It’s no surprise that this is already sold out on everything except the hoody.

UR In My Top 8 is a great concept- a knight sends text messages to his princess rather than risk fighting the monsters that stand between him and the castle tower. Some really amazing textures help this shirt to be one of this week’s stand outs.

Kids will hold hands with anybody. That, and a simple case of missing identity, form the basis of the design for Everybody Loves a Yeti. It’s a nice, spare piece of art with tons of personality.

The Select this week was Rock the Frog, but for me the shirt didn’t live up to its awesome name. There’s a sense of studied awkwardness at play (which I usually go for), but here it just seems to detract from the sense of motion that a smashed guitar ought to have. The shirt placement is perfect, but the rest of this is just not my cup of tea.

Anthill Trap is solid. There’s a great cartoony style at play, and the joke is easy to understand at a glance. I’m really not crazy about the giant sun shape in the background, but I’ll also grant that I don’t have a better idea on how to handle that space.

Overall, a great selection of shirts. The $10 sale continues until Monday, so if you haven’t checked it out yet, definitely take a look.

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27 August 2007 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: $10 Back to School Sale


Yep, there’s a ten dollar sale on at Threadless! And I’m going to go on record as saying this is the best sale ever. Why? Because today there are 14 new shirts and 4 new reprints. Even more impressive (to me), this marks the first time in history that I have scored two of the printed designs with $5 scores. Those two shirts were″>Everybody Loves a Yeti.

The sale will continue until September 3rd, but act quickly as the most popular shirts will sell out before then.

(Typically, I’d post reviews of all the new shirts. Due to the high number of shirts and my lack of internet at home right now, that won’t be happening today. I may include that information later in the week, so stay tuned.)

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25 August 2007 ~ 4 Comments

Threadless by the Numbers

Fantastic Blognanza crunched the numbers to find answers to the biggest questions that users have about Threadless.

1. Can a design’s score be accurately predicted?

2. Do professionals get printed more than amatuers?

3. What kind of shirts don’t get printed?

Definitely some good information to be had there if you missed it when it was first posted a few weeks ago. It’s interesting to see the difference in number of comments between printed and unprinted work- I wonder if that might be due to the number of multiple printed artists (alumni tend to get a ton of comments regardless of quality, especially compared to new artists).

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23 August 2007 ~ 0 Comments

Wordans: Rock Your Wear to Win $1500


Wordans is the Canadian answer to both Threadless and Spreadshirt– they use Threadless-style printing techniques and emphasize the site’s design community, but they are like Spreadshirt because each designer has their own online storefront.

The full site is due to launch in late September, but there’s already a contest in progress. In the Rock Your Wear contest, designers can submit their original work for a chance at the $1500 prize. The top ten finalists’ work will be printed on shirts, which they will then pick up from the Wordans office in downtown Montreal where the shirts can be further customized by hand before judging (these post-print effects are optional, but encouraged). The top ten will be chosen on September 18th, 2007, with their designs ready for customization on September 21st. The winner will be chosen on September 26th and rewarded the next day at the Rock Your Wear Gala.

If this sounds good to you, be sure to submit your entry before midnight on September 17th, 2007.

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21 August 2007 ~ 0 Comments

New Shirt Monday at Threadless


For me, this week wasn’t quite up to Threadless‘s usual standard. But there are still some gems to be had in this new crop of shirts.

Grandma Clock was the surprise of the day, and I mean that as a huge compliment. The subject matter is bizarre- strange, multi-eyed faces sit atop a jumble of stripes, white speech balloon shapes, and… oh yeah, a bunch of yellow boobs. It’s deeply strange, it’s a lot of fun, and there’s no way this would have made it through the voting process. In other words, it’s the perfect Select tee.

The Great Outdoors is a gorgeous and innovative composition by an artist who is still fairly new to the site. A lot of his work has been similar to this, in that a jumble of characters and setting indicators combine in an almost collaged manner. They’ve all been great designs, and while this wasn’t my favorite I’m gad to see one of these in print.

Carnie Nightlife is kind of an interesting case for me, because I love the artwork. The problem I have is that I’m really not crazy about the way it looks on a shirt. Different strokes for different folks and all that, but I think the placement makes the white expanse of the shirt more of a focus than the art.

As for the rest… Butterfly Fish, Quack Attack, Polar Gardening and Make Yourself at Home are all really solid compositions, very much in keeping with the cutesy side of the Threadless aesthetic. They’re not bad shirts by any means, I’d just prefer to see some more innovative stuff being printed. There’s always a time and a place for cuteness and cleverness, but the catalog is starting to feel really over-saturated with it these days.

Thumbs up on the reprints, though. Both Lions Are Smarter Than I Am and the A City Built on Rock n’ Roll Would Be Structurally Unsound are on par with the current level of submission quality, if not a bit higher. Which is exactly the type of reprint I like to see.

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19 August 2007 ~ 0 Comments

Parappa the Rapper Loves Threadless: My Top Three

Gmail loves Threadless isn’t the only competition that just passed the submission deadline- Parappa the Rapper Loves Threadless just passed its submission deadline as well. Some really great entries were posted, all dealing with the theme of “I Gotta Believe!” Here are my top three:

I Believe [I can fly] - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever
I saw daddy planting a Buddy tree - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever
Mystic Rain. - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

I Believe [I can fly] uses fifties-era cartoon styling to create a scene that communicates childhood wishful thinking. It’s very charming, and speaks to anyone who was once a child with an impossible dream.

I saw daddy planting a Buddy tree uses a surreal, saturated color palette to great effect. Rather than being a sad scene of a child mourning his dog’s death, it almost seems to deal with an alternate reality where a child really can bring his pet back to life with a little hard work and determination (and, of course, a watering can).

Mystic Rain is a bit of an odd one, it depicts a leafy cloud raining leaves on a paisley tree. The color palette is completely fresh, standing out from just about any shirt I’ve ever seen. And more than any other design in this competition, it looks amazing on a shirt- from composition to color to theme, it is truly made for the t-shirt medium.

Although the Parappa the Rapper competition was often overshadowed by the Gmail contest (they ran concurrently), I think it was actually the more successful of the two. It had more solid entries (in my scoring, anyway) and lacked the sheer volume of designs by untrained and untried designers that marred the Gmail competition. During the Parappa contest, I scored nine designs with 5s (four of which were $5 scores). Of those, none were dropped early and three are still being scored.

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