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Welcome to Compete-tee-tion! This site tracks all the biggest news in the t-shirt design competition world, from reviews of new releases to information on new contest opportunities.

16 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Shirt.Woot Derby #538: The Pageantry of Nature

shirt.woot logo

Shirt.Woot is going back to nature with their latest derby theme…

Starting Monday at noon: Derby #538: The Pageantry of Nature

Earth Day is almost here, so let’s do some beautiful nature-inspired tees THAT DON’T ACTUALLY MENTION EARTH DAY. As was the case with the non-tax day Tax Day shirts last week, a mention of Earth Day dates the shirt and makes it marketable like once a year. But the beauty of a rock lives on for millennia. No cream tees again!!!

This derby begins Monday at noon and continues through Thursday at noon. The top three vote-getters will each earn $1000 and $2 per item sold after the first day of sales. Those winners will be sold on Friday (1st), Saturday (2nd), and Sunday (3rd). Additionally, other designs may be selected for a Plus sale on the following Monday, with each selected design earning $2 per item sold.


Meanwhile, there’s still a little time left in The Smallest of Things derby. There’s a lot to choose from this week, but these are two underdog entries that captured my attention:

shirt.woot hostbustersshirt.woot the madness

Hostbusters by thatrobert is like Ghostbusters as seen through the eyes of a hypochondriac! The transparency is a great touch.

The Madness by nomadslim does something you don’t see a lot of on text shirts- it actually escalates emotionally as the phrase goes on. I love how unhinged the final scream looks.

This derby continues through Monday at noon. The top three vote-getters will each earn $200 cash and $2 per item sold. Additionally, other designs will be selected and sold for $2 per item each. Both top vote-getters and selected designs will be sold in a future Plus sale.

15 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Monsieur Poulet’s Dino design contest

monsieur poulet dino

Monsieur Poulet‘s site might have a fresh new look, but they’re headed back to the past with their DINO design contest. Here’s what they’re looking for, as translated by Google from the original French:

Dino competition, but what is it? Under this name to the less mysterious Monsieur Poulet offers for the first time, a drawing contest  with the theme Dinosaurs. I said dinosaurs, they are gigantic, ferocious and terrifying way Jurassic Park or so rock n ‘roll  and terribly endearing as “Denver the Last Dinosaur.” These creatures fascinate us ever since our childhood. To be honest with you, we have also the ambition at the end of the competition, to print the selected artwork on children’s clothing. So get your pencils, your pallet, and we will say “it’s your friend and more.”

Enter before April 29th, 2016 for your chance to win. Winners at Monsieur Poulet earn 2 Euros per item sold, for a total of up to 2000 Euros.

14 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Shirt.Woot’s Lightning in a Bottle and Skate Tees collections

shirt.woot lightning in a bottle

Lightning bolts and stormy scenes feature prominently in Shirt.Woot’s Lightning in a Bottle plus sale. Here are the designs that most made me want to rain some praise on them…

Best of the Bunch: The fun cartoon style and unique use of a Seinfeld quote in George’s Adventure first won me over in voting.

Nicest Surprise: You’re Dancing in My Pee! is so gleeful in its embrace of lowbrow humor that I can’t help but love it.

This promotion will only last until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday. So if there’s something you like, grab it fast!

shirt.woot skate tees

Shirt.Woot also embraced nostalgia this week, specifically ’90s skate culture, in their Skate Tees plus sale. Here’s what I thought was the most radical…

Best of the Bunch: I like the cheerfulness and positivity of Skate Rainbow, a real contrast to the more seedy or rebellious image of skateboarding that you’d typically see.

Nicest Surprise: Skateletor ran into some trouble in voting due to its shirt color, but I’m glad Woot staff noticed it and selected it for a print anyway. The hand drawn text and pure absurdity put it a cut above the average pop culture parody tee.

Shirt I Am Most Biased About: My design Skate Long and Prosper combines Star Trek and the famous screaming hand logo.

This promotion will only last until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday. So if there’s something you like, grab it fast!

13 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Shirt.Woot Derby #537: The Smallest of Things

shirt.woot logo

Shirt.Woot has a little gem of an idea with their latest derby theme…

Starting Thursday at noon: Derby #537: The Smallest of Things

Design a tee about tiny things or smallness. Nano, cuddly field mice, baby birds, Antman, and tugboats. That is a list of things that are generally regarded as small. But size is relative. Huge surprise: No cream tees.

This derby begins Thursday at noon and continues through Monday at noon. The top three vote-getters will each earn $200 cash and $2 per item sold. Additionally, other designs will be selected and sold for $2 per item each. Both top vote-getters and selected designs will be sold in a future Plus sale.


Meanwhile, money is a major focus in the current You’ll Pay for That derby. Here are two current underdog entries that I think could be worth their weight in gold:

shirt.woot money treeshirt.woot ice creamness

Money Tree by piercek25 has a sharp, almost woodcut style that looks great on the shirt. Plus, I love that it doesn’t take the obvious path of a green tee!

Ice-Creamness by BekaDesigns won me over with its cute, cartoon take on ice cream scoops- they’re almost like a stack of little octopi!

This derby continues through Thursday at noon. The top three vote-getters will each earn $1000 and $2 per item sold after the first day of sales. Those winners will be sold on Friday (1st), Saturday (2nd), and Sunday (3rd). Additionally, other designs may be selected for a Plus sale on the following Monday, with each selected design earning $2 per item sold.

12 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless’s Infographics design contest

threadless infographics

Threadless is all about communicating information visually with their latest themed design contest, Infographics. Here’s what they’re looking for:

Let’s celebrate the magic that happens when we take ordinary facts and visualize them with related shapes, topical icons and cleverly-used imagery.

Infographics help us better understand the topic they dive into. We’re able to compare and contrast sets of data more easily and engage in a more interesting way with the subject at hand. Plus, they’re really fun to look at.

For this challenge, we want you to pick a topic and make your own awesome infographic. Your design can be full of actual facts, or just a study in silly. Just make sure it makes a rad tee, pillow, tote, shower curtain…you get the idea! Bonus points if your infographic plays off the environment (shower curtain/powder room, tote/grocery store, etc).

Enter before May 2nd, 2016 for your chance to win. One winner will earn $1000 cash and a $500 Threadless gift certificate. Additionally, all designers printed will earn $1 minimum per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).

11 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Monsieur Poulet’s OGM

monsieur poulet organisme genetique mentmeurtrier

Organisme Genetiquement Meurtrier by Rattila was the big winner of Monsieur Poulet’s OGM contest, which sought designs about genetically modified foods. Setting aside whether that’s actually something to be fearful of, this design definitely does a good job of taking on the theme’s challenge and translating it into a bold visual. There are a lot of great choices made in this piece, starting with the choice of using corn to be the main symbol. That decision gives the creature’s head an elongated, alien look and allows the artist to turn its husk into a set of threatening praying mantis-like hands. Plus, those teeth being bared look like rogue kernels. Even the text reflects the theme, showing evidence of manipulation in the skulls tucked away in each E. And of course, the design’s border ensures that the message won’t be lost on anyone by pairing strands of DNA with skulls and crossbones. Very clear in its messaging, making this a design you don’t need to read to understand.

Winners at Monsieur Poulet earn 2 Euros per item sold, for a total of up to 2000 Euros.

10 April 2016 ~ 0 Comments

Threadless: Army of Hugs and more new this week

threadless army of hugs

Army of Hugs by Santiago Sarquis (metalsan) is my favorite design this week, and also the big winner of the Pattern Remix contest. I love the way it takes a pattern associated with aggression and transforms it into something kind and gentle. Part of why this works so well is that the update is so minimal- the camo shapes are still the same as they’ve always been, these oozing puddles of color. The only change is the thin smile and pair of eyes, applied to each color chunk. The uniformity of the faces helps to ensure that instead of seeing individual characters, all you see is the friendship that they represent.

threadless do the wavethreadless full moon

Do the Wave by Jackie Farkas (JackieFarkas) has a strong 80s vibe, with a color gradient and geometric style straight out of Miami Vice. I like that while this is an abstract design, there’s still a lot of interest created by the use of those two diagonal teal lines. They lay across the background like a ladder, changing the lowest line into a wave as they pass. The image’s distressing is a neat choice, because it enhances the vintage feel of the shirt while at the same time introducing some chaos into the otherwise very precise and regimented artwork.

Full Moon by Carol Martins (Carol Martins) took me by surprise by covering material that’s been seen a lot on shirts (wolves and the full moon) but using it in a completely new and unique way. While other pieces focus on the animal’s fierceness, this illustration strikes me as a tribute to their playfulness. It’s telling that we don’t see any teeth at all- instead, wolves are shown climbing, running and leaping as though the night landscape is their playground. Everything about the art softens the threat of the wolves, right down to the pale blue shirt color trees that crackle their way through the ink and the soft, doodled border that encircles the scene. Definitely a cool way of addressing an familiar animal and capitalizing on the unexpected.

threadless meowosaurusthreadless taco gnome thinks you're cute

Meowosaurus by Mathijs Vissers (Demented) is my favorite of Threadless’s recent April Fools collection. It’s bigger than life in both concept and style, making it a perfect fit for the all-over dye sublimated print. The art itself is basically a kooky, high-energy collage of flowers, cats, dinosaurs, and comic book text, so it mixes the cute and the aggressive into something zanier than the sum of its parts. Even the background seems to be pulling more than its weight, with hints of geometry and soft gradients peeking out from behind the strange cast of characters. I feel like this is the kind of shirt so dense that you’d notice some new detail in it every time you put it on.

Taco Gnome Thinks You’re Cute by Katie Campbell (campkatie) is another of the April Fools prints, full of awkwardness and weird energy. For starters, although gnomes can be a bit creepy in general, I’ve never seen one even approaching the level of malicious sleaze that this guy conveys. Those are some cold, calculating eyes! The gnome’s retro qualities are enhanced by the vintage approach of the text, and paired with the cheesiness of the gnomber line there’s a strong kitsch appeal. From there, tacos add some wackiness and maybe even a bit of a low rent, seedy quality because of their fast food roots. It all makes for an unsettling, but very funny, final piece.

Threadless prints new shirts every week, chosen from the designs submitted by and voted on by site members. Most winners earn $1 minimum per item sold (learn more about Threadless artist payments).