Although we are clearly the best t-shirt company, we are not the first t-shirt company. Many have tried, many have failed and a few have succeeded. In modeling our company, we observed many of the companies that we liked in order to make ours better. Here are a few of those companies who have done what we are setting out to do:
Diamond Supply Company
Based out of California, skateboarder Nicky Diamonds created a clothing and skate accessories company that is currently one of the hottest street wear brands out right now. Mostly centered around their diamond motif, the designs are simple, using mostly one color text or simple images. The hip-hop world has really picked up on their stuff and it can be seen in countless music videos and has even been featured in television commercials. The brand has done a great job of using a single idea, the diamond, and using that in many different ways to create a united brand that has caught the attention of the market.
Started by Benny Gold after getting tired of his job as a graphic designer, he moved from a single sticker reading "Stay Gold" to a full clothing brand. The company has just recently moved out of his living room and into a new storefront in San Francisco. Most of the designs involve strong, short text which is extravagantly interwoven with smaller images. The favorite image seems to be the paper airplane, which appears in the Benny Gold logo. Although Benny is still working his way to the top, its nice to be able to see someone doing right ahead of us and remind us that it can be done.
According to them, "The Imaginary Foundation is a think tank from Switzerland that does experimental research on new ways of thinking and the power of the imagination." IF is a company which uses much more involved images and new ways of placing them on the shirt which makes them very unique. Rather than simple images placed on the chest of the shirt, IF uses the whole space, and they use it well. Their images revolve around the use of imagination and combine a thoughtful message with a intricate, fantastical image. One of our favorite companies, these guys are super unique and super good at what they do.
Arguably the most important street wear brand in existence right now, The Hundreds, based in LA, was started in 2003 as a combination clothing brand and online magazine. No one combines online and in store business like these guys. Their blog offers insight into their creative process and day-to-day work as well as reporting on art, skateboarding, travel, other brands and whatever else Bobby Hundreds, the main blogger, runs into. They have a wide range of clothes which go from simple designs with their genius "adam bomb" logo to cut and sewn button down flannels to skate shoes and denim. Walk around any hip district in the US and just try not to see a number of people rocking their stuff.