The modern t-shirt, one of our top selling items, has come a long way from its humble beginnings as a onesie style undergarment meant primarily for working men. A ‘union suit’, as it was called, featured a button down front, long sleeves, and it’s primary function was to be worn under a uniform to keep you warm. Frustrated by the design and fit, workers began cutting them in half, separating the top from the bottoms.
Shortly thereafter, the Cooper Underwear Company removed the buttons and it was marketed as the ‘bachelor undershirt’ to men with no wives and no sewing skills. However, this item still looked very much like underwear which was considered inappropriate to be worn in public. In fact lawmakers in several countries banned the public display of underwear items.
In the 1930’s Sears launched a version of the shirt which they called the ‘Gob’ shirt. This was one of the first versions of ‘t-shirts’ being marketed as appropriate for both an undergarment AND outer garment. However, it wasn’t until the late 1940’s - early 1950’s that the t-shirt began to shed its image as just a functional undergarment. Worn by Hollywood stars, t-shirts quickly gained popularity as trendy fashion items.
T-shirts not only disrupted the fashion world but the promotional world as well. From presidential campaigns, protests, human rights, sports teams, or your favorite band; t-shirts were becoming a powerful medium for promoting just about anything you were interested in.
We like to consider ourselves ‘disruptors’ in this market as well. At a time when over 97% of apparel being purchased in the USA is being produced overseas, we are proud to have stayed true to our American roots. All of our t-shirts are sourced right here in the USA with a supply chain that supports hundreds of American jobs from coast-to-coast.