A History of T-shirts and Violence

This blog was supposed to an add-on to the boxwrestlefence website…which was meant to be a t-shirt shop for the WMA community. We spent a great weekend drinking wine and brainstorming. I wrote up a horde of slogans and sayings, and Courtney started playing with fonts and putting together some rough layouts. We wanted to have a webfront shop that catered just to our fellow sword people, and gave them great t-shirts to wear. We put up a few sample shirts, nine designs for men, and ten for women. We thought we’d see how sales would go for the first bunch, and then put the rest up. If sales were good, we’d start to go for bolder full-shirt designs from other shirt printers.

We’ve only sold a few t-shirts through our shop, but the blog has taken off. Weirdly, we’ve sold lots of the “Hit like a girl” shirts via the cafepress market…mostly to Texans. I don’t know what’s going on in Texas, but apparently a lot of people go on to Cafepress and look for t-shirts that talk about hitting like a girl in a positive light. Cool. If you see a woman in Texas with one of our shirts, be sure to thank them from me for the support!

I still like the idea of t-shirts for the community. Who doesn’t like to show off their hobby? And I found most of the other shirts out there somewhat lacking. I like a bold message that speaks to those with inside knowledge, but is still attractive and interesting to outsiders. The kind of shirts that would start a conversation you’d actually want to have. I thought the messages on them should also speak of a quiet, mature pride…clearly showing that you were the kind of person who trained in a serious way with real arms.

It’s an idea we might revisit again in the future, when the market has grown more. In the meantime, though, it costs us nothing to keep the shop open, and add new designs. Well, there is a cost to me…hiring a beautiful and talented Emily Carr University grad to do the design work costs me dinners, dishes and backrubs.  But I’m willing to pay that price, for you…

So, any requests for new designs? What do you want from a WMA t-shirt? What kind of logos, slogans, or quotes? Feed me some ideas!

4 Comments

  1. I like the t-shirts and have a few ideas, but I must say 37 bucks for a t-shirt seems pretty steep to me.

    • Most of the designs are available in a “value t-shirt” option that is only $16.50. Bluntly, I’m not interested in running a bargain shop. Custom shirts designed by a grad from a fairly prestigious art and design university should run higher than average…

      That said, Cafepress takes most of the profit for themselves. If anybody out there knows of a similar platform with smaller base prices, by all means let me know!

  2. Perhaps some rapier focused designs? I like your designs but I don’t do longsword or sabre.

    • Doesn’t Marozzo count?

      Or did you mean the actual graphic? Our intention was to play down the graphic element to avoid to much cheese, and rapiers don’t translate well that way. Just a little too busy. I might try working on something with Courtney later, but I would have to convince here there was a market, first.

      So far Marozzo shirts are outselling everthing but the “Hits like a girl” shirts. I’m happy. 🙂

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