Photo by permission of Shirt Matters
Update: 3/12/2010: It appears that Shirt Matter is out of business since the links do not work. However, it is still a nice entrepreneurial l story. For related stories, see at the end of the article. Green Talk has lots of goodies on the site aimed to please your green minds.
The other day I looked in my closet and realized I must own 2 dozen t-shirts that are at least a decade old.I can’t live without my t-shirts. They are soft against my skin, easy to wear, and so comfortable.
I started to think. How many people wear t-shirts that tell you something about them? Tees are walking billboards of who we are and what we believe in. Some people wear their favorite team or sport t-shirts because they enjoy sports, while others wear sayings on their t-shirts that amuse them or provide a political message. T-shirts have impact.People read them, laugh at, and agree, disagree, or align with their messages.
Paul Mak of Shirt Matters feels that T-shirts with environmental messages will reminds us daily to consider our impact on the Earth and each other.
“We all understand the world is changing for the worse; the peace, the environment and people are being threatened. Our mission is to remind and alert everyone about the problems our planet is facing and what we all should do. Our goal is: Better people, better world.”
I asked him why the T-shirt business to promote environmental messages? He believes everyone in the world should contribute to make the world a better place. Since his talents lie in graphic design, and he loves wearing t-shirts, he figured he could combine these two loves by creating messages on T-shirts to educate people. In turn, he feels each person who wears one of the Shirt Matters’ t-shirts will be contributing to the world everyday.Each time someone reads the message on the T-shirt, he or she will be reminded to do something good for the Earth.
Here are some examples of how certain T-shirt messages could help to make the world a better place:
- Every time you wear your “start recycling” t-shirt, perhaps someone will pause, and be reminded not to throw that plastic bottle or aluminum can in the garbage can.
- Wear your “trees matter” t-shirt with pride, reminding people of the importance of trees in stopping global warming.
- Maybe your passion is with animals. Countless animals are abandoned, abused, and neglected every year. Proudly wear your love of animals over your heart.
What makes Shirt Matters t-shirts special is the graphics displayed on each shirt. Paul designs each shirt himself with the intent that the more graphic the t-shirt, the more attention someone will pay to the message. His use of colorful t-shirts just adds to the message being displayed. At the present time, there are 10 designed shirts with different messages about our impact on either our Planet or our communities. The natural colored T-shirts are made of organic cotton; however, the colored t-shirts are not organic. Quality and customer satisfaction is a top concern for Paul. Basically, he would not sell you any t-shirt that he would not consider wearing himself.
“We use American Apparel’s fashion fitted tees. They are made of the finest quality (100% combed cotton). The cutting is stylish and fits your body beautifully. The shirts are smooth and tight-knit with reinforced shoulder construction to maintain shape through repeated washings.
Well, no matter what, tee shirts are a form of expression. The graphic has to look good and the shirt itself has to be fashionable and comfortable.”
All Shirt Matters T-shirts are made in the U.S.A. and silk screened in Canada. According to the Company, both manufacturing and printing processes take place in a socially conscious environment, and absolutely no sweatshop labor is involved. Paul is in the process of finding an alternative organic source for all of the Company’s t-shirts.
So what matters to you? Let Paul know. He has invented a section on the website called, “submit a matter” where anyone can submit an idea of what matters to them that would be helpful to the Planet or people. He announces every month the winners via the Company’s newsletter. It is fun way to get involved to help the Planet. Want to contribute to helping the Earth? Consider wearing a T-shirt that promotes your passion and reminds others what really matters.