Cotton Blog

t-shirts, fashion, stuff...

Archive for March 2010

FizzyT, March 31st, 2010

Topshop has changed a bit over the years hasn’t it? I really didn’t think it would stand the test of time after a dodgy patch in the 80’s and early 90’s, but here we are, years on and they’re going stronger than ever. Topshop and it’s alter ego for boys, Topman  have reinvented themselves as not only a purveyor of mainstream fashion but also as edgy and innovative, signing up designers for limited collections featuring distinctive prints and artwork.

Fashion-tastic!

Fashion-tastic!

Added to that, there is the recession busting fashion juggernaut that is Kate Moss. Kate, being charmingly honest, is inspired by items from her own wardrobe rather than actually claiming to have created them herself. This particularly canny declaration has gone down rather well in a market saturated with celebrity clothing lines. Kate is now on her 10th collection for the store, and I imagine her wardrobe is pretty extensive, so I expect she’ll be churning out chi chi little numbers from her closet for a while yet.

Cool T

Cool T

One t-shirt that really caught my eye (although not from her range) is this Collage New York Photo Tee. Just how fab is this? I love the photo montage printed onto the t-shirt, and the mix of images is really eye-catching. This is such an interesting design, and has immediately set me off into my own creative little orbit! Oh here we go again!

London Collage

London Collage

This is a really great idea to produce on your own t-shirt. It’s very easy to give your prints the Andy Warhol treatment, lay them all out together (have a go with different photo packages, you’ll be amazed what you can find) and then to print them onto a t-shirt. This would make a great gift idea for a leaving present or an end of era style yearbook for friends finishing school, work or college. The possibilities are endless and the versatility of our custom t-shirt design preview option that allows you to see how your finished collage would look on a t-shirt, and the different styles of t-shirt that you can print onto. I just found a London-themed collage on the internet to see how it might look. Using the preview option, I’ve shown this printed onto a unisex fair-trade t-shirt, but you can have a play around. This particular kind of design would look great our other styles of t-shirt, hoodies or mug . Marvellous….time to get cracking!

FizzyT, March 30th, 2010

Hold on old chap, I'm just chasing some oiks!

Hold on old chap, I'm just chasing some oiks!

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, has been at it again. Practically a one man crime fighting force roaming the streets of London, he tackles hoodies with aplomb, wielding brollies at oiks (his word, not mine!), and latterly chasing litter louts across the capital on his bike, taking them to task with his unique brand of admonishment. Oh, if only more politicians were as hands-on as Boris, the results would be hilarious! Ooops! I mean the world would be a better place. Obviously. Writing in his column in the Telegraph, Mr Johnson describes how whilst cycling home at “the speed of an elderly French onion seller” he was hit on the head by a travelling trajectory lobbed out of a “souped-up Astra” Catching up with them was no hardship for bicycling Boris, and he took them to task forthwith. “Open up now! ..you aren’t going to get away with it. I am the mayor” (said the mayor) “I know you is the mayor” the driver replied “and it was a accident”

Mayor-in-waiting!

Mayor-in-waiting!

One of these days, I fear, Boris is going to come a cropper, although I sincerely hope not in the meantime however, you can imagine that being assailed by a red faced mayor ranting about litter might put you off EVER dropping any again. I would love to dedicate a customised t-shirt for his mayorness yet I suspect it might never see the light of day as I don’t think I’ve seen him in anything less casual than a suit. He would surely appreciate the design I have printed on this mug however, I guess if he didn’t like it he could always chuck it in the bin!

FizzyT, March 29th, 2010

James Perse

James Perse

One of the most highly sought after items on anyone’s essential wardrobe list is a perfect fit white t-shirt. But where on earth do you start? So much depends on body shape, required length and shape, oh yes, and that old chestnut, the price. One of my favourite t-shirt designers has to be  James Perse.

Beautifully fitted or loose t-shirts for men and women in what I find is just the right length and totally soft and smooth to wear. However with all gorgeous things, the price tag is at the high end (£47 for a fitted t-shirt from net-a-porter), this kind of makes it totally worth it but you really have to buy them one at a time, rather than grab a handful to keep you going for a while. I do like the American brands though, I think they do good t-shirts simply because they have cause to wear them more than we do. They have nice weather, with sunshine not endless cold and rain. Check out Ella Moss or C&C California for some great fits, but again, not the cheapest.  At the other end of the spectrum, Marks and Spencer (who else?) do a really wide range of t-shirts. I really like their Fair Trade short sleeve t-shirts, from £5 each (2 for £8) which means you can still fill a basket with them yet not need to feel ethically challenged.

American Apparel

American Apparel

One brand that ticks all the boxes is American Apparel. Hugely innovative with an ethos that reads like a manifesto on how to build a business without exploitation of either workers or environment. I love the drape to the sheer jersey unisex t-shirt, and some of their prints and t-shirt designs are fantastic. In fact, we love this company so much we will soon be featuring a range for you to print your own designs onto. The high quality of the cotton and the softness of the fabric make them ideal to personalise, with either slogans or photos or other prints, the colours are amazing on this cotton rich fabric. I’d better stop now, or else I will be in danger of turning into a t-shirt anorak, if there is such a thing. Watch this space!

FizzyT, March 28th, 2010

Move over Posh and Becks (or thick and thin as I like to call them), there’s a new his n’ hers couple  in town. Enter Katie Price and Pink Price, oh sorry Alex Reid, best known for wearing girl’s clothes and being completely under  not only the  over manicured thumb but also the great silicone shadow of his missus.

In one of those moments of “Oh we’re so in tune we even dress alike” they have been sporting a printed pink t-shirt apiece. And oh how wrong it looks! A bright pink t-shirt is fine on a girl, and if a boy wants to wear it, then that’s doable too, but both together?  Instant chav attack! Do you know what this reminds me of? Oh yeah, Posh and Becks wearing matching leather gear in the 90’s. Some couples will never be cool, or even remotely bearable, but oh boy do they persevere!

FizzyT, March 27th, 2010

Whilst sitting in the reception area of my local garage, waiting for my car to have something horribly expensive fitted, I had a perfunctory browse through the classic car magazines. Now,whilst the classic car magazine is not my most usual reading matter, I did find myself gripped by all the cars of yore. So stylish. What happened to automotive design between say the 1973 Ferrari Daytona, and er….the bug ugly Fiat Multipla? Is there no justice in the world?

Anyway, whilst pondering this and other matters, I noticed an advert for Rari Tee, a t-shirt design company that turns your photograph of a classic car, plane or dog into a vintage style line drawing and then prints them onto a t-shirt. What a lovely idea, I thought, there must be ways to do this myself using photoshop or some other design programme. And how easy peasy it is.

From this.....

From this.....

To this!

To this!

By uploading a picture, you can draw over the outline however you want, and there you have it. As if Bob were your uncle! I am going to have a go at making evocative gifts for all and sundry from old photos of classic planes and grannies and things and putting them onto mugs, t-shirts, mousemats and the like. Well, everything we sell, basically. And I thought a trip to the garage was going to be boring!

FizzyT, March 26th, 2010

I wonder what the opposite of inspired is? Is it “de-spired” or is that something that only happens to a cathedral? What is it when you have a truly awful starting point and feel compelled to go back even further? Maybe something to do with self flagellating? Anyway, having trawled through the archives to see where the Russell Brand “look” (and I use that term loosely) originated, I saw a lot of similarities in them there rockers of the 80’s. Def Lepard, Helloween, Whitesnake, and kings of the chest hair, Bon Jovi.

First on my list sporting a blow dry effect that would make even the most pampered pooch blush is Jon Bon Jovi. How could an otherwise good looking chap get it all so wrong? I’ve got an ancient Vileda super mop that’s seen better days than that hair, and he must have more split ends than the Mississippi!

Still, Jon Bon Jovi, having scraped through the other side of his bad hair decade still has plenty to offer.

Here he is, looking much less angora-rabbit like, in a corking t-shirt  and with a cleft in his chin that would make Kirk Douglas proud. And I have to say, there’s something about a vintage music t-shirt that makes you feel like you’ve grown up. Been there, done that, had a silly 80’s do, still got that t-shirt!

Oh Yeah!

Oh Yeah!

Actually, stuff the old one back in the cupboad, along with all the other miscreants! I love this number, up to date, yet that vintage feel and slogan that goes so well with a decent haircut.

FizzyT, March 25th, 2010

Another day, another girls outfit from the sartorially confused Russell Brand. Do you remember those games when you put people’s heads on other peoples bodies? Well this looks just like Russell Brand’s head has been bunged on Kate Moss’s body by mistake.Big Big mistake. The t-shirt’s not too bad, bit of a nautical theme going on there, quite summery which is appropriate as he’s in Los Angeles. But these jeans are killing me. Again and again. Tight skinny legwear that stop at the ankle are never going to be, never were, and never shall be in the slightest bit fashionable on a man. Even a man who likes to dress like Jon Bon Jovi circa  the early 80’s when style was on a sabbatical.

See what I mean? Compare and contrast. Both gorgeous in their own way. Both way way wrong.

FizzyT, March 24th, 2010

You might just have missed Cheryl singing in Radio One’s Live lounge yesterday, but Chezza’s biggest fan, Hannah obviously didn’t. If getting her t-shirt personalised with a photo of the two of them  wasn’t going far enough, she also has a bag with  the same picture.They have evidently met before and are (almost) the best of friends. It’s quite sweet really, and one of those things that Hannah will keep forever, even when Chezza has retreated into obscurity and become fat and boring. (As if!). And whilst clearly the girl is a huge fan, it just stops from becoming borderline obsessive. Sort of.

Chezza’s live performance was brave if a teensy bit quiet, although to be fair, she was never plucked from the thousands of wannabes on Pop Stars The Rivals solely because of her voice. It was because even then, she was a perfect little pop princess in waiting. And she was a little bit hungover, and whatnot. (whatnot being Ashley). Still, as the t-shirt proclaims, she will remain Hannah’s hero forever. Ah!

FizzyT, March 23rd, 2010

When Russell Brand burst onto the comedy scene with his big hair and dandified manner, a whole generation of girls had a new crush. Controversial and hilarious, Brand got signed up for more and more, and a glittering career beckoned. But then there was that slight little hiccup on Jonathan Ross’s radio show (oops!), and like a shooting star on a one-way mission to earth, Brand plummeted in the popularity stakes.

Well, luckily for him, but not for the oodles of girls who still fawn over him, Russell has found a respectable (ish)young girly in the shape of the lovely Katy Perry, who likes kissing girls (allegedly!), and is thus not put off by Russell’s bouffant, and slightly effiminate dress sense. But what’s with the vest, Russ? It is very thin if you know what I mean? It looks very much as though he is wearing ALL of Katy’s clothes, from the far too sheer vest, to the short skinny jeans to the flip flops. Did he get dressed in the dark maybe? Surely it’s the only explanation! I do rather enjoy Russel’s brand of humour (sorry) and would like to see more of him. But not that much more. No! No! No! and yet again No! There, I feel better now.

FizzyT, March 22nd, 2010

Never one to miss a (photo) opportunity, Tory leader David Cameron has been getting into the news this week for taking part in running  for Sport Relief. Leading the runners (how symbolic is that!), David took part in the fund raising venture, running a mile through the capital, duly wearing his slogan t-shirt and showing a fine pair of calves in the process. Asked how he thought Gordon Brown would have faired, he smartly replied “I don’t know – he should have turned up” Miaow. Charity, David charity, remember! Anyway, Sport Relief has so far raised over 30 million pounds to help change lives both over here in the UK and in some of the world’s poorest countries. How amazing is that? And it has to be said good on DC for donning his t-shirt and going the extra mile. But how long will he be out in front for? Expect Sarah Brown, Gordon’s not-so-secret pr weapon to up the ante again.  Another million twitter followers, another photo call with her hubby looking desparately normal? Watch this space.