C.D.O.T.W: Big Kahuna Donuts

CDOTW Big Kahuna Donuts Banner Photo

We really love a simple and straight forward design. They captivate and excite us, because they demonstrate that you can tell a great story, paint a perfect picture, or convey a complex message without having to go too crazy or be a modern day Picasso or Rembrandt.

But when you toss donuts and surfing into the mix, you don’t just grab our attention, you steal our heart.

This week’s customer design of the week comes to us from our friends over at Big Kahuna Donuts in Austin, Texas. Fun illustration work, complementary colors, and a simple and concise arrangement definitely won over our judges.

CDOTW Big Kahuna Donuts Front

CDOTW Big Kahuna Donuts Back Imri: This design is all about fun: the colors, the imagery, and the glazed donuts. This is the kind of shirt that says “I’m ready to party” and/or “I’m out running errands.” Although Austin, Texas isn’t necessarily known for surfing, donuts, or being Hawaii, this fresh new business venture has that concept on lock. The artwork they sent for the back was not ready for prime time, so I completely recreated it, adding strong outlines and bold colors. The front needed only minor adjustments, so I was able to leave the original spirit of it intact–including most of the muscles.

This is clearly not a man who eats baked goods all day, but he seems to enjoy the occasional donut while riding a wave of Hibiscus. This t-shirt makes me smile, and I hope it helps Big Kahuna Donuts ride the waves of success into the future.

Joe: Sweet treats and tasty waves?!? Sounds like a well-rounded breakfast to me! The illustration is very clean and well executed. I love that the “I” on the back print in “I heart donuts” is a surfboard, which helped hammer home the company’s brand of surf and starch. It is fun and colorful; all the things I look for in a donut.  This design hangs a perfect ten out of ten, brah. This tee is totally tubular!!

CDOTW Big Kahuna Front and Back Proof

Mike: There are a lot of effective ways to sell donuts. Honestly, the trick is standing out from competition; donuts do a pretty good job selling themselves. Mmmm. Donuts.

Anyway, sometimes to compete with booming competition you need a great hook. Big Kahuna Donuts uses what might seem like a non-sequitur. But that non-sequitur–the random intermingling of killer surf and tasty donuts–is exactly what makes Big Kahuna really stand out.

The branding that Imri worked on for this tee shirt really illuminates the fun and lighthearted feel of Big Kahuna Donuts. The images are light and crisp, and the big glazed donut on the back of the shirt makes you want to bask in the sun and enjoy a fresh one, straight out of the fryer. The front of the shirt consists of a dynamic and moving composition with the hibiscus wave adding a nice subtle nod to the Hawaiian Islands. The composition on the back conveys the “I <3 DONUTS” message effectively, with a well-rendered surfboard reading easily as the “I.” Combine all this with fun and bright colors and you have a shirt that will delight any surf enthusiast or donut aficionado.

Put me down for a dozen!

9 T-Shirts That Should Have Never Happened

9 T-Shirts That Should Have Never Happened Banner Photo

T-shirts have become a commonplace style choice for people all over the world. They are cultural staples that help people express themselves in ways Tweets and Instagram posts don’t. However, there are some t-shirts that really just don’t work. Like, at all. Now, some may find the tees written about in this article to be funny or charming, perhaps. However, we’re here to tell you that they’re not. They’re just plain awful.

Without further ado, here are 10 t-shirts that should have never happened.

The “List” 

The Beatles List Tee

Ever gone grocery shopping? Sure you have. Would you ever want to wear your grocery list on a t-shirt? Of course not. Yet, here we are, living in a world where some person thought it would be a great idea to list out names of characters or sports teams or ex girlfriends so you could wear it for the world to see.

We guess the good news here is that if you ever forget the names of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, there’s probably a shirt to help you and everybody else remember. You’re welcome…?

“I’m With…”

I'm With Stupid Tee

The arrow pointing to another person (or self) shirt (“I’m with stupid,” for example) is an example of probably one of the best and most creative t-shirts on the planet. We’re also lying. They’ve been around forever, and they’re just not funny.

If the shirt is supposed to point to the person next to you, what happens if they move? Did you pack a change of clothes? Because if not, the joke’s on you, pal!

Muscle/Bikini Tee

Bikini Muscles Tee

Made popular by beachside novelty t-shirt stores in the 1980’s, these tees have somehow managed to find their way into catalogues featuring retro gifts and novelty items. The two are lumped together because they both try to pull off the same idea for different genders. But if you think about it for more than just a second, you’ll probably never wear this t-shirt again. Ever. You can’t wear it out in public without being that person. Sometimes it’s best to not even bother.

Just the Dog’s Face

Animal face shirt

Yes, these exist (Just look above). They’re just t-shirts with pets’ faces on them. That’s it; just an animal’s face, staring out into space. It’s not just weird, it’s flat out creepy. Who thought this would be a good idea? Because we’d love to meet the person. We love our furry family members as much as the next screen printing company, but this is just…  It’s just a face! AHHHH, OUR CUTE AND CUDDLY NIGHTMARES.

Reality Show Support

Reality Tv Support T-Shirt

This is a big one. It’s such a large category, but in the end, there’s one vital point to this being a tee that should’ve never happened. It’s that you are wearing and advertising these awful programs that give money to people who have absolutely no talent, no credible future, and no reason to be on our TVs. It’s not a t-shirt, it’s a walking headline or photo of somebody that doesn’t deserve to have the cost of a single t-shirt, let alone your time of day. Ugh!

“I’m Old”

I'm Old Tee

Look… We get it, you’re old. You’re proud that you’re old. And we’re happy for you. We’re firm believers that age is only a number, and that getting old with elegance, style, and grace is an absolute blessing. But part of “elegance, style, and grace,” means not wearing a t-shirt talking about it, or anything related to it. The only thing that should tell your age is your birthday cake or driver’s license–that’s about it.

The “Tuxedo Shirt” Tee

tuxedo-shirt

Want to wear a tie/bow tie and a button down, son? Great. Do it. But please don’t slap a t-shirt on to comically look formal. Let’s be real here. T-shirts are not costumes; Costumes are costumes. The point of simplifying an outfit to the point of it being just a plain shirt is funny only for kids and not for adults. Kids can pull it off because they don’t know any better. They’re confused, they don’t pay taxes, math problems freak them out, and they’re growing up in a world where pizza is considered a food group. A grown man–or anyone who knows better–just can’t pull this off.

“I Went to _____ and all I got was this Stupid T-Shirt” Tee

i-went-to-t-shirt

Bible Camp.  Tallahassee. Best Buy Geek Squad Training Camp. Ugh. UGH! These t-shirts are simply the worst, yet somehow or another, they’ve wormed their way into mainstream culture over the last few decades as staples for roadside tourist traps or beachfront gift shops. While we appreciate that you were thinking about us away from home, there had to have been a better or more unique shirt in the bunch.

Animals in Space

animals in space t-shirt

Huh?! What genius spearheaded this design idea? In past few years, these t-shirts have become increasingly more popular, and we truly just don’t understand why. Is it because it’s bizarre? Different? Unique? Who cares? It’s stupid and every item that falls into this category needs to be shot into space immediately.

 

5 Most Epic Star Wars Tees For Every Fan

5 Most Epic Star Wars Tees Banner Photos

Star Wars: The Force Awakens opened in theaters across the country this Friday. And unless you’ve been living under a rock, you already know this.

Star Wars merchandise has been an essential puzzle piece of pop culture for decades now. Comic books, video games, cartoon series’, lunch boxes; if people will buy it, chances are Star Wars released a limited edition of it to sell.

And, of course, that delicious revenue stream includes t-shirts. Every single character from the film franchise has most likely been slapped on a tee at one point or another. But therein lies the question: How do you decide which ones are the best?

That is the task at hand. Listed below are the five best Star Wars tees every fan should own.  Yes, only 5. You may disagree, but after scouring the Internet like a Stormtrooper looking for droids on Tatooine, at least you’ll know the homework was done. You’re welcome.

The Vintage Logo Tee

Classic Logo Tee

A tee of this nature is essential to any fan’s collection. Not only does it feature classic space vehicles from the Star Wars flicks, but at its core is the recognition that these movies started in the late 70’s. This t-shirt shows the origins of what, then, was a state of the art film combining a space opera, serials, Greek myths, and more. The movies have everything one could want, but the t-shirt narrows it down perfectly. The simplicity in picture, stamped with the famous Star Wars logo/font, is across the board, what the movies mean to audiences all over the world: Pure escapism in a galaxy far, far away.

The Millennium Falcon Blueprint

Millennium Falcon Blue Print

The Falcon is one of the most beloved spacecrafts to ever grace the silver screen. The ship may not be pretty, but in the words of Han Solo, “She’s got it where it counts, kid.” The Millennium Falcon blueprint tee does come off a little busy at first glance, but for fans of the vessel, it identifies all the important areas that give Solo’s primary mode of transport a little kick. Kessel run in 12 parsecs, ya dig?

Boba Fett Vintage Tee
Boba Fett Tee
He’s barely in the trilogy, and he doesn’t say much, but Boba Fett is immensely popular for one reason or another. Anyway, the bounty hunter that delivered Han Solo to Jabba the Hutt has plenty of tees dedicated to him, but the best one, without a doubt, is the vintage-style 80’s version.  It showcases Boba, just being cocky (per the norm) holding his blaster in front of his ship, the Slave 1. It perfectly demonstrates how slick the guy is, even though he’s not doing much. You’ve been getting away with that for over 30 years, Boba! Keep doing you, player!

Darth Vader Broken Mask

Darth Vader Death Star Face

Darth Vader is only considered one of the greatest villains of all time (despite his whiny lead in with the prequels, but there’s no need to discuss that here). The “Broken Task” tee symbolizes the arc of Darth, from being in control of the Death Star in A New Hope, to taking care of his boss in Return of the Jedi, which occurred in an unfinished Death Star. The destructive space orb is mapped out on Vader’s face on the tee, showing the beginning and fatal (?) end of the one-man wrecking crew behind the Empire.

Cast of Characters Tee
Cast of Characters Tee

A fan can’t show that they love Star Wars more than wearing this shirt. It has all the characters from the original trilogy (although mainly based on media for A New Hope), so all the 1977-1983 movies are summed up in one fantastic shirt. The poster/vintage style of the tee definitely makes it seem timeless, and that means it would look good on any hardcore fan–male or female.  It honors the awesomeness that has kept the franchise going for over 30 years, appealing to several generations of people and kids of all ages.

That’s the power of the force, indeed!

DIY: Make Your Own Ugly Christmas Sweater

DIY: Ugly Christmas Sweater

Ahhhh the holidays… Roasted duck, A Christmas Story on repeat, eggnog on deck, and all the family you can handle. It’s our favorite time of year, and for good reason. But when you’re cuddling up with loved ones in front of the T.V., sippin’ on some hot chocolate and watching A Charlie Brown Christmas, you need to be doing it in the right getup.

Over the last few decades, ugly Christmas sweaters have become a holiday staple in offices, at company Christmas parties, and at awkward family dinners around the world. But where’s the fun in ordering the same one as everyone else, when you can make your very own?

“How?” you ask. Well, we’re feeling pretty jolly here in the Rush Order Tees offices, so we went ahead and made our own. Here’s how we did it.

Step 1: Open The Design Studio

Step 1: Open The Design Studio

We added special clipart to our state of the art design studio just for the sake of creating the most epic ugly Christmas gear ever, so that’s what we used to make ours. You can mix and match all of our custom ugly Christmas art with any of our over 50,000 other pieces of creative custom clipart, or even add your own design to truly make your ugly Christmas sweater a one-of-a-kind custom. But it all begins with the design studio! So either click the link above, or head on over to the www.rushordertees.com homepage and click “GET STARTED.”

 Step 2: Select A Garment

Step 2: Select A Garment

Sweaters are the tradition, but acrylic and wool can be itchy, so we opted for the comfy, yet classic, crew neck sweatshirt. We offer a variety of long-sleeve shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, and other accessories, but for this project, the Guildan Heavy Blend 8.oz 50/50 Fleece Crew is our favorite.

To select it, we clicked on “Product” in the left-side tab, and then under “PRODUCTS,” we clicked the “Change Garment” text (the design studio defaults to Gildan Ultra Cotton 6 oz. T-Shirt—our most common garment). From there, we selected “Sweatshirts,” then “Crew Neck,” and then clicked the first one, which is the Gildan Heavy Blend 8 oz., 50/50 Fleece Crew. From there, we wanted to select a more festive color (white is a little bland, right?). We sided with red. The “Change Color” text is in the “PRODUCTS” column, on the left-hand side (under the “Change Garment” text).

Step 3: Add Art

Step 3: Add And Size Art

And now the fun begins. Click the “Add Art” tab on the left-side menu. Aside from the ugly Christmas art, we have over 50,000 other pieces of creative custom clipart for you to check out and use in your design. We were going for a more traditional ugly Christmas sweater, so we worked with what we have there. To access the ugly Christmas clipart, search for “UGLY XMAS” in the search bar, and then click the magnifying glass.

The design studio is great for symmetrical and proportional designs, because it features buttons that can duplicate, flip (horizontally and vertically), and lock proportions of pieces of clipart. For instance, when we decided to line the top half of the design with identical Christmas trees, we selected and sized one, and then duplicated it three more times. After some gentle positioning, things were perfect. We also used this feature for the pair of snowflakes on the bottom and throughout the rest of the design, and the two hearts. For the reindeer, we used the duplicate button, along with the horizontal flip button.

The possibilities are endless!

Step 4: Throw In Some Text

Step 4: Throw In Some Text

Of course, no ugly Christmas sweater is complete without some text! There are a few different “classic” ugly Christmas sweater fonts, but the most popular ones—by far—are “SILKSCREEN” and “Canciller,” both located in our design studio. There’s nothing we love more than a classic design with a great theme, so we stuck with “SILKSCREEN,” for its pixelated style (it matches the pixelated artwork we used). We also saw that it seemed a little skinny compared to the rest of the other art, so we decided to make it a little bigger, as well as give it a slight outline in white to thicken it up a bit. A white +1 outline looked perfect to us!

Step 5: Play Around And Have Fun

Step 5: Play Around And Have Fun

Step 5 isn’t a real step, but it’s necessary to note that it’s ok if everything doesn’t look perfect, at first. Always expect to spend some time trying new things, re-working a few aspects of the design, experimenting with different fonts, etc. Even if you have a concrete idea, there are a million different ways to make something beautiful, and every design is different. But you already knew that!

Mess around until you find something you’re happy with, and then prepare to be the life of every holiday party you attend. For the last piece, we made the hearts and deer a little bigger, to avoid unnecessary open space in the bulk of the design. Now it looks perfect!

 

Hmmm, actually, maybe we forgot something…

Finished Product

Happy Holidays, From Rush Order Tees!

There ya’ go! Now it’s perfect. From our family to yours, Happy Holidays!

Tis The Season: 10 Places to Donate Your Gently Used Clothing

Tis the season banner photo.

Now that December is in full swing, it’s clear to see that people are swept up in their tinsel-covered schedules. It’s easy for everyone to get so involved in their favorite part of the holiday season that they forget those who are less fortunate and unable to buy and spread around as much cheer to their friends and family as they’d like. In fact, most people don’t think about making donations to a charity unless they walk past someone ringing a bell next to a big red pot or find that they don’t have enough storage space to put away all the new clothes they’ve gotten from Santa. Do your part this year to remember families in need and help make this their best holiday season yet! Here are some national charities that help make our world a better place.

American Red Cross

American Red Cross Logo

The American Red Cross is one of the best known charities in the US, but despite what many people believe, they are not the best place to drop off your lightly worn clothing. When working to help those suffering from a disaster, donations of clothes and household items actually have to be cleaned, sorted, and packed which takes up a lot of time and money. If you have some items to donate and still want to support the Red Cross, the best way is by utilizing Ebay’s charity option.   There you can sell your worn clothing and donate the proceeds to the Red Cross. Learn more about it on their website.

Salvation Army

The Salvation Army Logo

The Salvation Army is always looking for aid through donations, including clothing, household items, and furniture. The things you give will be sold at their stores, located all over the country, and the proceeds go to funding for their Adult Rehabilitation Centers. Find out what drop-off locations are nearest to you or schedule a free pickup from a Salvation Army truck at here.

Dress for Success

Dress for Success Logo

Dress for Success is a not-for-profit that helps women achieve professional success and economic independence internationally. It is always in need of new or slightly used professional attire, including shoes, bags, and jewelry. See where you can donate locally and how you can make a difference by going to their website and searching for your closest affiliate location.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of America

Big Brothers and Sisters of America Logo

Big Brothers Big Sisters of America is a household name when it comes to child mentoring programs. However, volunteers are not the only thing the foundation needs to help children in every way it can. To find out how and where to donate lightly worn clothing to Big Brothers Big Sisters, go to their website. From there, you can use the search to find the agency closest to you and the best way to donate to them.

Career Gear

 

Career Gear Logo

 

Career Gear is an organization similar to Dress For Success. This charity provides professional clothing and mentoring to men in poverty to help them interview successfully for jobs and strengthen their economic standing in the community. You can drop lightly used clothing off yourself or ship in your donations. Click here for more information on giving.

Planet Aid

Planet Aid Logo

Planet Aid is a nonprofit that focuses on environmental support and sustainable development for poverty-stricken areas of the world through the recycling of textiles. No matter what the condition of the clothes you are ready to donate, Planet Aid can put them to good use, and they have over 20,000 donation bins for you to make your drop off. Research where the nearest one to you is and learn how to get involved now.

Goodwill

Goodwill Logo

The Goodwill organization takes your used clothing and household items to resell in their stores nationwide, with the proceeds going to charity efforts. It is a great way to help members of your local community through all different challenges in their lives, including finding employment. In fact, those that donate clothes to Goodwill are lovingly called “job creators.” For more information on giving and your local donation center visit, go here.

United Way

United Way Logo

United Way works with government, companies, and other groups within a community to help tackle some of the area’s most important issues. Cash donations and volunteers are always needed, and throughout the year United Way will host clothing drives. Times where new or lightly used clothes are especially needed are during the winter months and for back-to-school. Find your local United Way location so that you can find out what this charity has going on.

Share Your Soles

Share Your Soles Logo

Another charitable organization is Share Your Soles. Created as a means to give new or slightly used shoes to people of impoverished nations, many of whom have never owned a pair of shoes before, Share Your Soles has helped donate over two million pairs of shoes so far. Check out their website to see if there is a drop off location near you, or send them a box of your donations.

Mid Atlantic Clothing Recycling

Mac Atlantic Clothing Recycling

Mid Atlantic Clothing Recycling is a part of a growing movement to empty America’s landfills. Instead of donating clothes that will eventually be thrown away, they encourage people to donate clothes to their recycling efforts. MAC Recycling is a regular contributor to the D.A.R.E. program, so you can trust that their funding will always go to a good cause. Find out where you can start the process of recycling your used clothes.

No matter what you are celebrating this holiday season, make sure you do your part to help make your local community and our world a better place. Any little bit helps, and in many cases, it can all start with a t-shirt!

How to Liven Up Your Promo T-Shirts

How to Liven up your promo tees banner photo

Getting promo t-shirts made to create hype and awareness about your business has never been easier. With minimal time, effort and expense, anybody with a laptop and a dream can churn out a batch of promo t-shirts that can do a more-than-adequate job of generating recognition (and revenue) for your business. While there are dozens of factors that determine the effectiveness of your company’s promo t-shirt (design, materials, distribution, etc.) a few select companies consistently produce t-shirts (and other promotional items) that blow right past “effective” and attain the ever elusive level of “cool.”

Streetwear companies like Supreme, Stussy, and The Hundreds have understood for years that the key to making people happy to advertise your business on their clothing is to create merchandise that is cool by itself and just happens to be linked to a business or brand. Creating promo t-shirts that customers will want to wear and actually make an effort to attain can be done by following these five steps:

Don’t Make Them Easy To Get

Camp out lines

There are few more inarguable facts of human nature than people want what they can’t have. Sneaker companies like Nike have understood this for decades, and knowingly under-produce popular styles of shoes to ensure demand far outweighs supply. This has lead to the “Camp Out” lines outside sneaker stores on weekends and the thriving online resale market.

Kith Clothing

A great example of this approach is NYC sneaker boutique KITH that releases ten baseball caps with the store logo every day at 10 a.m. and are completely sold out by 10:15–every single day.

Producing a limited number of shirts or saving them for special customers or Friends/Family will automatically give them a value and almost guarantee the shirts won’t end up in the pajama drawer.

For Those In The Know…

Brooklyn Brewing Co. hat

Most people don’t want to be a walking billboard for your business, but if you use a part of the logo in a creative way or include an inside joke that only frequent customers will recognize (“I took the 5lbs. Burger Challenge and Won!”), you can create merchandise that can be worn as a fashion piece, instead of an advertisement. Creating an element of exclusivity or limited inclusion will prompt people to buy into what you’re selling.

A recent example of a company effectively using this technique is Brooklyn Brewery, that recently started using the cursive “B” from their logo on merchandise to provide a classic feel and appeal to people that might not want to blatantly advertise an alcoholic beverage logo on their clothing.

The gear is highly desired, and lends its wearer the appearance of authenticity.

Use Quality Materials

Dirty Clothing Rags

If you buy cheap shirts that look like they should be used as a rag to wax your car after one washing, that’s exactly how they’ll be used. Do some homework or talk to an expert about using premium or performance fabrics that will ensure your shirt can be worn for a while.

If your t-shirts look like the one above after a few rounds in the spin cycle, you are basically throwing your money away.

Give Your Promo T-Shirts To Influencers

Kanye West Wearing APC

Urban fashion designers have understood for years that having a rapper be seen in your brand is better advertisement than money can buy. Kanye West alone has changed the game for dozens of clothing lines just by wearing them on stage or television. While access to A-list celebrities is unrealistic for most business owners, you can focus on “local celebrities” (musicians, DJ’s, popular personal trainers) or the “cool kids” in your circle that will influence their peer group to check out your business. Putting a few free shirts into the hands of the right people in your area can generate a huge return on investment, if executed properly.

Incentivize Social Media Posts

Surf Taco

Contests like, “Best instagram post with #YourBusiness shirt wins a $50 gift card” or, “Person wearing #YourBusiness t-shirt in the most exotic location this summer wins a free dinner for four on Labor Day weekend” will motivate your customers to wear your logo on social media, generate buzz by the nature of competition, and keep your brand in customers’ minds until a winner is selected.

New Jersey food chain Surf Taco utilizes this idea by relentlessly distributing stickers with their logo and constantly promoting customers’ posts that have spread the brand from the Jersey Shore all over the world.

 

Producing a cool t-shirt to promote your business is a delicate balance of finding the right design, materials, and distribution channels, but by doing it properly, you can ensure your customers will value the finished product and your logo will be seen by everyone!

Legendary T-Shirts From Your Favorite Fast Food Joints

Legendary Shirts From Your Favorite Fast Food Joints

When we think about t-shirts, I’m often thinking about comfort. When I’m thinking about comfort, we’re probably thinking about food. In fact, when we think about most things, we’re probably also thinking about food. We really love food. Did somebody say food?

Anyway, the most iconic fast food restaurants are usually so revered by their loyal fans and followers that their t-shirts fly. And for collectors and fashionistas, they carry an element of “classic cool” to them, especially if they have a great classic design. Here are some of the most iconic tees from some of your favorite fast food joints:

Wendy’s “Where’s the Beef?”

where's the beef

Wendy’s is probably one of our favorite fast food restaurants. Good food usually attracts customers with good branding. Wendy’s, “Where’s the Beef?” campaign originated in the 80’s but has had real staying power as the company’s slogan. Originally, it was a pass at McDonald’s and Burger King’s large buns and disproportionately small amounts of beef. The line was originally meant to be “Where’s all the beef?” but the mistake was adopted and the slogan stuck. We like it better this way, anyway!

So whether you really like Wendy’s, or dislike their competitors, or love tshirts that remind you of food, you might get excited over this iconic tee.

The Waffle House

Waffle House

Depending on where you live in the United States, you may be lucky enough to have a Waffle House in your town. Come with a bunch of calories dedicated to this meal, because there is nothing low-fat, low-calorie, low-anything about eating at Waffle House. So whether you’ve had a rough night or just want to have a great morning, Waffle House has got you covered. Amp up the experience with a shirt sporting their logo. We can almost guarantee you’ve seen one before.

In-N-Out Burger

In-N-Out

In-N-Out is one of our nation’s finest fast food establishments, and is a timeless tradition for any red-blooded American. If you live in the western U.S., In-N-Out is a privilege, and one you probably know and love. But if you’re from the rest of the U.S., In-N-Out is the fast foodie’s Mecca, and a trip there is a rite of passage—East Coasters are said to cry tears of Animal Sauce at the mere thought of the beautiful beefy delights. ANYWAY, the classic In-N-Out logo tee is a culture (and culinary) staple, but the legendary burger joint also features a whole slew of awesome designs on its website.

Hot Dog Johnny’s

Hot Dog Johnny's

Hot Dog Johnny’s is a place of legend to New Jerseyans and other’s living in the Northeast. The small roadside stand, in business since 1944, is known far and wide for their delicious dogs and world-class French fries, and rightfully so. But Hot Dog Johnny’s gained a cult following of novelty t-shirt enthusiasts who love the simple, classic design of the t-shirt, the cartoon-ish illustration of the hot dog, and its famous location, in Buttzville, N.J. BUTTZVILLE. Get it?! It’s funny.

Honorable Mentions:

Just because they aren’t fast food joints doesn’t mean they don’t have incredibly well-known t-shirts. We had to give a couple honorable mentions to two of our favorites.

Piggly Wiggly

Piggly Wiggly

If you’re not in the know, Piggly Wiggly is a grocery store chain in the southern United States. Their mascot is a goofy pig and their name is just so fun to say! Piggly Wiggly frequently gives away t shirts to their loyal customers with a picture of their mascot and a silly slogan like, “I dig the pig” or “Big on the pig.” For no other reason, I would shop at this store because it always makes me smile. The prices aren’t bad, either

 Sriracha Logo

Sriracha

Food, restaurant, or condiment logo t shirts are a special breed. I would categorize those under the t shirt style of being ironic. Or, perhaps, you’re just a super fan! Regardless, these t shirts make excellent Halloween costumes – whether you’re trying to be original, or are really just throwing it together at the last possible minute.

 

There are so many fun and interesting iconic food t shirts. Can you recall one that really stood out to you? Share your favorite iconic food t shirt in the comments!

Or, if this list has inspired you, create an omage to your favorite restaurant, grocery store, condiment or fast food joint using our design tools!

 

C.D.O.T.W: Once Upon a Child

CDOTW Once Upon a Child Banner Photo

We won’t say we’re an easily excited bunch, but we really get excited about designs. And on the occasion that a good design also overlaps with a good cause or a great idea, we become ecstatic. This week’s Customer Design of the Week comes to us from our good friends at Once Upon a Child, a storefront chain dedicated to buying and re-selling very gently used children’s clothing for fractions of what it would cost new. Kids stay clothed (and fashionable!) and parents save money—what could be better?

Our judges appreciated this design for its thematic illustration elements, along with its fun and dynamic color palette. The design plays into the kid-friendly and child-oriented aspect of Once Upon a Child, without losing sight of the brand’s recycled “O” logo.

Here is what our judges thought about it:

Once Upon a Child Design

James: Right off the bat, it should be mentioned that this organization uses some pretty great branding. Sister company to Plato’s Closet,  Play It Again Sports, Style Encore, and Music Go Round, the design for Once Upon A Child utilizes the telltale “O” logo with their trademark arrows. This design also takes a unique stylistic approach, which I really loved. The minute you see it, you understand that this is a kid0-friendly, kid-oriented company. It is almost as if a kid drew the logo, with its hand-drawn, bubbly feel. The color combination of blue and red provides excellent and complimentary contrast. It’s easy to see that this company went full force with this logo, and the great colors and illustration style drive the concept home.

Once Upon a Child Design Proof

Mike: Sometimes a t-shirt calls for a complex design with a lot going on. But other occasions call for a simple and well-executed concept. This shirt design for “Once Upon a Child” strikes a great balance. On one hand, the typography is childlike and fun, but doesn’t come across as juvenile. Some simple designs might come across as careless, but this one shows a clear direction and a solid concept. The circle design used as the “O” in “Once” solidly conveys the idea of “recycle” or “reuse,” and therefore represents the brand effectively. A simple color scheme with a lot of contrast really pops this design right off the shirt. This stands as a great example of effectiveness through simplicity.

Joe: This may be the most straight forward design we have used to date for this customer design critique. However, that in NO way makes it any less effective of a design. Actually, it is quite the opposite… What is it that Ludwig Mies van der Rohe always used to say? “Less is more.” This design is, in fact, very effective for the company it represents. The alternating colors and playful font choice convey immediately that you are dealing with a business that works with or for children. Using the imagery of the arrows circling around to create the “O” in “Once” is a simple and effective tactic to imply up-cycling. As my old pal Richard Bach used to say, “The simplest things in life are often the truest,” and this design is truly effective.

To learn more about Once Upon a Child or find a location near you, visit their website or check them out on Facebook

5 Gift Ideas That Will Give Santa a Run for His Money

5 Gift Ideas That Will Give Santa A Run For His Money Banner Photo Big

The holidays always make for the best time of the year. People are excited to be with their close family and friends, homes and businesses are meticulously decorated with sparkling lights, and everywhere you look you find messages of peace, love, and cheer.

From the wonderful flavors of the season to the euphoric aromas that surround you, it is hard not to get swept up in the holiday spirit. However, unless you have harnessed the same magical powers as St. Nick, it might be difficult to get everything done that you are hoping for in such a short time. What’s worse, the ever-growing Pinterest boards of DIY holiday crafts and growing feeds of carefully mastered treats might leave you feeling a little shameful when you buy all of your Christmas cookies from the local grocery store.

Fear not! Here are some fun, original gift ideas that’ll make you the hero of the holiday party!

Upgrade the Recipe-In-A-Jar Gift

Recipe In a Jar Idea

The Recipe-In-A-Jar gift has become an under-the-tree staple in recent years. It is an easy way to give your secret recipe for cookies—or any other holiday treats—to friends with the guarantee that they won’t be stale by the time they’re discovered in a mound of presents.

However, one may start to wonder how special they really are if Grandma simply portioned the same amount of sweet ingredients into 20 jars and handed them out to every family member that came to visit. Upgrade your gift by adding something personal!

Have your favorite cookie recipe embroidered onto an apron to give to your favorite chef. It’s practical, and unlike the one-time use they’ll get from your Recipe-In-A-Jar, they’ll be able to recreate your masterpiece over and over again!

Revamp Your Ugly Sweater

Ugly Holiday T-Shirt Idea

As if your calendar isn’t packed enough this season, Ugly Sweater parties have become more common than inflatable decorations on your neighbors’ front yards. We’ll be honest; we do love them, but sometimes a whole crowd of people standing around in heavy sweaters can get a little uncomfortable.

Free yourself from the heat this year by turning to an ugly t-shirt instead. You’ll actually be able to enjoy your eggnog instead of scratching and sweating your way through the party. Bonus points for adding some of your own flare with tinsel, garland, or maybe even lights to your festive shirt.

Bring Your Own Mistletoe

Mistletoe Everywhere

It goes without saying that having someone special to spend the holidays with is what really makes the season. Whether you are looking to woo a potential beau or spark a little winter flame with your longtime partner, mistletoe is your go-to plant to inspire romance (though we aren’t really sure why). Unfortunately, finding it at the most opportune moment can be a little challenging.

Why risk missing the perfect chance to plant a holiday kiss on the lips of that special someone when you can bring the mistletoe with you wherever you go? Mistletoe artwork, meet a hat dying for some embroidery.

Stop Spending on Gift Bags and Name Tags

Holiday Gift Bags

There is one thing we all share during the holiday season: a budget. Some may be larger or smaller than others, but in the midst of shopping free-for-alls across the country, we must not forget that our credit cards can only be swiped so many times. One of the most overlooked costs to the giving season is the materials we use to wrap our gifts. Gift bags and shiny tags may be pretty, but they are usually only good for one-time use. Where’s the fun in that? Try putting your gifts into bags that your family and friends will be able to (and will want to!) reuse this year. Personalize a tote bag or store your friend’s present in that new gym bag you know they desperately need.

Holiday Survival Kit

Holiday Survival QuiteYou and I might consider ourselves Santa’s little helpers, but we all know at least one person who dreads this time of year. It could be the cold, the shopping, or the heavily travelled highways around the holidays that drive some to the brink of madness. But we know that they just need a little guidance to insure they’ll enjoy Christmas as much as the next guy.

How can you keep them from being a total Scrooge and inspire a little joy in them this year? Give them an early present: the holiday survival kit. Be sure to include their favorite snacks to help them survive a traffic jam on the way to Grandma’s. Throw in some hot chocolate mix and a holiday themed sweatshirt to keep them warm, and if they are the type that can’t bear to step foot in a mall, include a gift card to an online retailer so they can buy all of their presents (including yours) without facing the crowds.

 

Big T On Campus: The History of T-Shirts and College

Big T On Campus Banner Photo

In this day and age, wearing a t-shirt and jeans to a college class is pretty much the norm. It’s easy enough to throw together, and it’s a statement of interest/wardrobe choice. However, when did T-shirts on campus become so acceptable? It seems in every old black and white photo, college men and women always seem dressed to the gills in their Sunday’s best; hair combed and neatly parted, shirts tucked in; dresses with the stockings to match.

But now it’s routine to see students dressed down in a t-shirt and flip flops. When did things change? Well, here’s a brief rundown:

The Beginning

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

It seems to be around the late 40’s/early 50’s that t-shirts became a “thing.” However, they were normally not just the item covering your naked torso. They were to be worn under button-down shirts or polo shirts, or under sweater vests or v-neck sweaters.

To put things into perspective, you’re also looking at a point in history when it was considered brash for men to unbutton the first three buttons of their shirt, and a time when rolling up one’s shirt sleeves too high was risqué. Wearing a plain cotton t-shirt was practically considered wearing underwear in public!

Boy, how things have changed.

Cultural Statements

Via Pinterest
Via Pinterest

Moving on, the clothes picked out by college kids seemed to get a little bit more relaxed around the 1980’s, when fashions changed as the decades transitioned. Disco was dead and pop music reigned supreme. Men and women everywhere were sporting shirts of their favorite bands and movies that were hot at the time. It was also the golden era for novelty tees. Of course, in the end, it was just to be comfortable, and it began a trend from those years on. The casual dress on campus revolution became too big to ignore.

School/Team Pride

Via NJ.Com
Via NJ.Com

Not only did students attending college wear pop culture tees, but they also wore shirts with their alma mater on them. This is a trend that caught on and became a part of U.S. culture. In fact, it’s not all that abnormal to see someone wearing a school shirt even if they never went to that school!

They could be a fan of that school’s sports teams, they could be parents or relatives of someone who does attend that school, or heck, they could just like the way that particular t-shirt looks; it’s a free country!

Going one further, states have so much pride in some colleges that even you didn’t go to a particular school, you may want to show off where you’re from.

Why do people do this?

Ultimately, it’s all about pride. Whether you go to a school or not, supporting it in one’s own way is something to be proud about. It’s an unbreakable tie to something people love.

Greek Life

Fraternity Men

Even further down the rabbit hole of school support is the fraternity/sorority life. Greek chapters flaunt their letters without second thought, and this is a concept that is revisited at homecoming and reunions. These folks are all about custom tees, especially during rush events. There’s always a revolving door for cleverly created Greek life shirts, or simple ones to show off a proud member of a fraternity or sorority.

It is hard to exactly pinpoint when the first fraternity or sorority tees came about. However, now more than ever, chapters are always coming up with new ideas of how to spice up letters, or how to get prospective new members to pledge. A combination of two elements really come into play here when it comes to designing the perfect t-shirt that shows pride in both school and extra-curricular adventures.

Speaking of adventures, college could (possibly) be the greatest time in one’s life. The school store isn’t just there for books; it’s there for memories, as well. Souvenir tees may be a bit pricey, but whenever you decide to wear a shirt supporting an educational institution, it’s because you are proud of where you were, or what they’ve done, or how they showcased their abilities in sporting events, the community, and beyond. The college tee isn’t just a piece of clothing; it’s a statement about what’s important to your past and your future. That’s saying a lot with just a few words and team colors.