Archive | loves threadless

24 March 2008 ~ 1 Comment

Spring Sale, More New Shirts at Threadless

Thanks to some server hiccups early last week, Threadless decided to extend their Spring Sale until Wednesday. There’s also a sweet coupon for the occasion: code spring08 will knock $5 off an order of $50 or more for the first 5000 people who use it.

Current by Dan Rule is a great take on infinity, using the easily recognizable symbol to form a river that flows into itself. The gorgeous hand-drawn style conveys the speed of the river well, and the inclusion of both human and natural elements mirrors the sense of interdependence that the symbol implies. The canoes are an especially nice touch, and they make me imagine riding that river for an afternoon of endless fun. While I love the design, though, the placement is incredibly awkward for ladies- a little smaller and a little higher up, and I doubt there would be so many complaints.

Staring Into Space by HORT is this week’s Select, using some puff ink and a custom shirt color. Honestly, I’m not a huge fan- while I like the idea of puff ink, the shapes over astronaut faces is more weird than attractive or interesting to me. I’d call it a cool visual experiment, but not one that I would personally want to wear.

King of Clubs by Ron Lewis recasts the king from a deck of playing cards as a boom box-toting hipster, complete with oversized sunglasses and a sweatband. I like the element of repetition and the use of halftones and patterning here, as they suit the subject matter very well. This is the kind of pun-based shirt I love to see Threadless run, because the art stands on its own even without the crutch of humor.

HOT DANG! by Andrew Bargeron (r.o.b.o.t.i.c.octopus) is like a movie poster adapted to a shirt, broadcasting the awesomeness of a little flick starring a motley crew of monstrous misfits. Heavy on neons, weaponry and fur, the shirt has several unique characters and part of the fun is imagining how they interact. The most appealing of the bunch is the one who gets center billing, a kind of blue bigfoot who dresses like Michael J. Fox in Back to the Future.

My Broderie Tyrannosaurus by Cheok Siew Yen (BubuSam) is the token cute shirt of the week, but it’s a good one. The mixture of the cute and the terrifying is traditionally a pretty successful gambit, and it works- the use of so many different patterns is another nice element, and it kept my eyes moving around the scene. My only quibble here is with Threadless’s printing- I think that given the subject matter, some stitching (or even puff ink) effects would have boosted the design to an even higher level.

Let It Grow by Florence (florever) is the Discogs Love Threadless winner. I have to admit, I was a bit disappointed in this choice because I’ve seen the guitar/tree thing done many times before (and there was a lot of originality in the entries for this contest overall). But independent of concept, the art itself is very nice. It’s a well-drawn illustration, and the use of a colored gradient does a lot to set it apart from other concepts like this in the marketplace.

Reprinted this week: We Can Fix It by Budi Satria Kwan (letter) and Sublimi’mAwesomeinal, a Type Tee with a slogan by mcgowen007.

Also debuting this week is Threadless Tee-V, a weekly video that shows goings-on at Threadless headquarters. In the future, it may also include giveaways and promos. This week’s installment is Episode One: Spring Cleaning.

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13 March 2008 ~ 2 Comments

Human Giant Loves Threadless

Ok, before I summarize the contest, I need to get one thing out of the way: I love Human Giant. I think they’re hilarious, and after I watched this season’s premiere I IM’d half the internet trying to get them to watch. So, this pretty much rates as the best contest ever, in my mind.

The Human Giant Loves Threadless competition is looking for designs made with the theme Old-Fashioned Fun. They’re a sketch comedy group, so I assume anything with a good sense of humor has the edge to win.

Enter before April 15th, 2008 for your chance to nab the huge prize package: $2000 cash, a $500 Threadless gift certificate, a Sanyo Xacti Digital Camcorder, a costume from the first season, an autographed Human Giant poster, personalized character answering machine messages, a signed t-shirt gun, a headshot of Cody Austin from Shutterbugs, sweatbands from the T-Shirt Squad, and a deck of cards from the Illusionators. It’s like a fan’s dream come true, I swear.

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29 February 2008 ~ 0 Comments

Hot Chip Loves Threadless

Hot Chip Loves Threadless. They’ve also got an album out titled Made In The Dark, which is also the theme for this contest. Specifically, they’re looking for shirts that find an innovative way to use glow in the dark ink.

Submit before March 31st, 2008 for your chance to win the fabulous prize. In addition to the typical Threadless winnings of $2000 cash and a $500 gift certificate, the winner will also receive a MicroKorg keyboard, every Hot Chip album, signed album art, and an Astralwerks gift pack.

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25 February 2008 ~ 0 Comments

New Shirt Monday at Threadless

Creature Convention by Julian Glander (secretly robots) is the winner of the Cranium Loves Threadless contest- an expected winner, but still a great one. More than just about any shirt in recent memory, this design took strides to do something new. Breaking from the norms of t-shirt design, the artist created a unique folding message- the drawing transforms from a group of appealing creatures to bubbly text that says “Wow!” Other shirts replicating this technique have already been printed, but this outclasses them easily.

Mount Pocono by Keith Shore is this week’s Select, using UV inks (visible only in sunlight) to display colored lines on a textured mountain, sort of an arty ski trail map. I have to say, this shirt’s not for me- I’m not crazy about the shape of it on the shirt (looks a bit lumpy, bulky, and awkward) and I’m at a bit of a loss as to why anyone would want to wear a ski trail map. The textures are great, but they’re the only part of this I’m digging.

Ballad Of The Weekend Warrior by John M Jirasek (MrDomino) is an intricate, vectory composition about the things we do because we have to, and the dreams we wish we could pursue. A helmeted, gasmasked soldier with weary eyes takes centerstage, as the rest of the piece disintegrates behind him. The text, a speech bubble stating “I just wanted to be an astronaut,” adds a clever twist to the scene- as much as the background is losing clarity, so is the subject. The colors look fresh and edgy on a lemon shirt, nice.

Merge by Chalermphol Harnchakkham (huebucket) is an illustration of a girl, melting into a pool of water. Flowing lines and muted colors unite to form an introspective shirt with a lot of style and a cool bottom placement. While this is a favorite of mine this week, I also wish that the design was grounded to the bottom of the shirt a bit more strongly. The product pic where the bottom half of the shirt is wet shows what this would have looked like if a darker brown was printed from the bottom of the drawing to the shirt’s edge, and it’s a look I much prefer.

Death’s Sweet Seduction by Graye Smith (grayehound) is a swirling drawing depicting the old wives’ tale that you should hold you breath when driving past a graveyard, lest the dead steal your breath away. I love the smoothness of the lines of the air, and the way they contrast with the more realistic environment- it sets up a cool implication of two worlds, the world of the living and the world of the supernatural. The dreamy, dreary colors add to the suspense of the piece.

Birds Of A Feather by Ross Zietz (arzie13) is easily my least favorite of the week. It’s not that it’s a bad shirt, it’s just so… boring. I mean, bird silhouettes? Coming out of a feather? It’s a decent pun, but Threadless has definitely seen better subs based around this concept. This one just looks like vector packs to me.

Reprinting this week: Partly Hungry Skies by Daniel Cheng (dinho) and A Voyage of Discovery by Ian Leino.

Overall, a very solid collection. There’s probably nothing I’ll end up buying, but I appreciate the breadth of style and concept printed.

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16 February 2008 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless Loves Revolution: Top Three

The Threadless Loves Revolution competition was different from most of the site’s other Loves contests because instead of using a corporate sponsor, Threadless was the sponsor. And the design brief was definitely alluring- they wanted designs that were in direct opposition to the cutesy pun shirts that Threadless is largely known for.

Underwater - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

Underwater by Lupencia is a favorite of mine, both for its dreamy feel and its textural lines. The overlapping objects and swirling lines give the impression of a gentle drowning, a sense of letting go. The fact that the girl in the image is wearing a costume adds appeal, and a whole set of new interpretations of the art for the viewer. Her eyes are closed, but the animal’s eyes are wide open. Very nice.

REVOLUTION 7.7 - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

Revolution 7.7 is the kind of tight collage that ALIADOTONY has had great success with at Design By Humans. This one takes the tactic of mashing together imagery from different eras, centering on the twenties girl with an Iggy Pop lightning bolt painted on her face. Like the artist’s other work, it’s a giant step above most other designs in this vein- instead of relying on the photography of others, the main focal points are hand-drawn elements and splashes of color. It’s an excellent piece, and I think it would really pop with some cool printing techniques.

Burden to Bear - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

I think Burden to Bear by slaterock would look absolutely fantastic on a shirt. The half-toned photographic elements (bears in the background) are a cool experiment and insert a modicum of reality into an otherwise imaginative scene. The shirt’s focus is a creature who is about 1/3 bear, 1/3 bone, 1/3 man and 100% awesome. Other creatures (a dark and skittish lot) cling to his strength, even as they seem to detest him for it. Not only would I wear the shirt, I’d also love to read a comic book about this fellow.

Overall, this is probably my favorite Loves competition of all time. By telling artists to do what they’ve always wanted to instead of what the audience demands, Threadless was really able to showcase the creativity and skill of their community. While these three designs are my personal favorites, there are many more that would be really fantastic winners.

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10 February 2008 ~ 0 Comments

Discogs Loves Threadless: Top Three

The Discogs Loves Threadless contest asked for entries that centered on the idea of Music: Past, Present, and Future. That’s a lot of room to play, and to me these are the three submissions that did it best:

Spiritual Symphony - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

Far and away my favorite of the bunch, Spiritual Symphony by Ellsswhere and watch.me.work shows some of the most famous deities jamming together, kind of a heavenly garage band. It’s a fantastic idea, and the execution (as a one-color design) is really neat- it keeps all the band members equally important in the scene. I’m also intrigued by the discharge printing technique that the artists have specified, since I’ve yet to see Threadless print that way. Here’s hoping this will be the first!

THE COQUELLIDOO - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

The Coquellido by mr.pimpant uses his trademark sketchy style to create a surreal scene where gigantic birds listen to music instead of make it. It has textures galore and a huge chicken, so for me it’s totally purchase material.

Rockers's Delight - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

Rocker’s Delight by MartinK. stars a purple-haired, rosy-faced, tattooed son-of-a-gun who won me over with his charming ways- I love the way he grips his walkman and cigarette so tightly, even as the smoke orbits around his Easter Island-sized head. Another factor that has me loving this shirt is the way so much of the design includes that character’s shirt- it’s a cool way of incorporating some pattern into the piece. Great work!

Overall, I found this contest to be a bit lackluster- maybe because so many music-oriented shirts get submitted even without a specific contest theme. Still, I think the three above are some of the best shirts I’ve ever seen at Threadless, so in that sense the competition was a great success.

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03 February 2008 ~ 0 Comments

Good Loves Threadless: My Top Three

Good Loves Threadless was a contest based around the theme Big Ideas. Three great submissions rose to the challenge.

A Lovely Afternoon - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

A Lovely Afternoon by ilovedoodle is a beautifully pared-down illustration of two gorillas- one riding a bike, and the other riding behind with a banana kite. The expressions and color scheme support the concept of a carefree spring day, giving this shirt a lot of charm and a slight fifties vibe.

The Mechanist - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

The Mechanist by Huebucket is an atmospheric drawing of a man controlled by his imagination. Ghostly hands draw, write and type as the creator seems to sleep on his desk, slumped over and giving in to creativity. I think anyone who has ever had an idea so powerful, it seems to create itself can relate to this one.

FAT PONY - Threadless, Best T-shirts Ever

Fat Pony by mr.pimpant is a shirt I was destined to like- anything with a dude in a costume is solid gold to me. But there’s a lot more to this shirt than a costume. I love the juxtaposition of opposites, from the large creature with the small exerciser to the contrast between the intense face of the man with the blank happiness of the costume.

Overall, some really great work. I think the theme hit the right balance between vague and specific to create some really nice shirt designs.

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