Respect the T-Shirt?
We (embroidery professionals, screen printers, apparel decorators) design, create and sell t-shirts - by the millions, literally! It is all to easy to take those t-shirts for granted.
I think we can show a bit of respect to these t-shirts and here is why:
Our logo'd and decorated t-shirts fill and even shape the lives of the people that wear them in a myriad of ways.
Ever purchase a concert t-shirt? It that just a t-shirt? Heck NO - it is a tangible, WEARABLE reminder of that entire experience - the performer, where you were, who you were with, your favorite song that was performed, how you locked the keys in the car on the way into the show, where you ate before the show, where you went after the show - all of that comes back to you in varying degrees every time you see that shirt much less wear that shirt.
Ever played on a ball team? Is that just a t-shirt? Definitely NOT! It identifies you as part of YOUR team. That t-shirt evokes thoughts of your teammates, the funny thing that happened before the last game, the day you ran into the fence and needed 12 stitches because you went after that pop fly at full speed, how the season ended and how you felt as a part of that team.
Ever participated in a charity event? Is that just a t-shirt? Absolutely NOT! It represents your personal connection to the cause, effort, or event - the very value system of the hosting organization and even YOUR values. Wearing it brings you right back to that cause, that day, that camaraderie, that sense of community which is powerful, energizing, compelling and unique at every one of these sort of events.
Ever seen a child sporting an "I'm the big brother/sister" t-shirt? That older sibling has been tagged for a role that they will have for the rest of their lives.
T-shirts often commemorate major life events, and then they are infused with memories. T-shirts become treasured keepsakes, often they are worn for years, sometimes even decades. Not because it is the only t-shirt you own, but because of the experience it represents.
How often do you find yourself digging for your "favorite" t-shirt on any given day? Is that t-shirt magically "better" than the other 12 shirts piled next to it? Probably not. It is the ONLY clean shirt you own? Probably not. Yet we do indeed dig for specific ones, based on our mood, thoughts, plans for the day - without even knowing that we are doing so, or why.
But DANG if it is not frustrating or downright annoying when we cannot find that ONE shirt or it is dirty. Guys, I know you often go, "Eh, I'm wearing it anyway. It's not THAT dirty." Ladies, we will (usually) compromise (with ourselves - go figure) and find something else that will work for the day - but not always, I suspect!
So, again I say - RESPECT the Power of the t-shirts you create, knowing they are likely to be companions to those that receive them on many of life's most important journeys.