Drawing Blanks

Recent personal projects have had me pondering the quality of blank tees lately, and when I want to consider the quality of American sportswear staples the first place I usually looks involves the wisdom filled rants of Gary Warnett and his reposting of The Vibe’s article which saw Dem Franchize Boyz review a bunch of white blanks is a good place to start if not for joy alone. It also helps that he seems hell bent on finding the perfect crewneck sweat and I can completely identify with that sort of narrow-sighted focus.

Blank tees are quite daunting when you start considering that devoid of any sort of print or gimick to really sucker yo into buying it it’s going to depend solely on the quality, cut and longevity (unless it’s $10 for a 3 pack). Oft I’m found pondering giving up wearing any shirt emblazoned with a print but the thought of investing into a staple piece of clothing that has nothing but a piece of fabric between you and the world is imposing. I suppose it’s the fact that at a level, the weird tweaked nerd part of my brain wants some sort of justification for everything that graces my body. My shoes have a story, my jeans have a story so if I’m wearing a tee there needs to be some sort of reason. It’s either deeply philosophical or (more likely) all those years of subliminal Coke ad’s have taken their intended toll on my brain.

Regardless, the blank tee is a lifetime staple that can save you from any sticky situations and at the same time serves as a platform for any man and his dog to start their own brand. The chase to find the perfect tee varies for everyone, some people want it cheap and disposable (ala Jay-Z’s one-and-done Uptown ethos) whilst the menswear forum dweller depends on the cut and details. Ultimately it ends up that everyone wants something different and there’s a million ‘perfect tees’ out there but in reality it’s not true. A tee can’t be too small, it can’t be too thin and it can’t shrink after the first wear, anything that falls into that category (and it’s at least 95%) is disqualified.

3sixteen produce a heavyweight blank which seems interesting, especially when you see that it’s a Canadian weave cut in San Fran featuring a “no sag” triple-stitched collar. I’m interested to see how they fare, anything from a company that builds denim for a living gives me the impression that they know how to make things last. The chaps at Goodhood have created what they feel to be the ultimate tee with their own fabric. With the amount of quality they stock you’d think they know how to do it right, however the warning that they fit large has me worried a little. The opposite applies to FUCT’s SSDD offerings, with their Japanese-made sizing throwing things into the more boxy and short category which is useless for a creature as lanky as yours truly.

In the end it all gets overly confusing and like many, I’m forced back to what I’ve already settled on whether that be AS Colour, Triple A, Hanes or whatever you’ve found works. Alas one day the time will come that I can afford the time and effort to sit down and cultivate something that works, in the meantime I’ll keep listening to that little voice convincing me I need stupid shit.

Stupid shit that can (and does) include this Indigofera wool blanket emblazoned with some of Wes Lang’s artwork. I’m not quite sure how I feel about Lang’s involvement with the Yeezus tour but ultimately I’m sure the payday was great and getting your work out to a completely different audience is always good. I was going to say that up ’til now it’s possible that nobody that once wore shutter shades knows about his work but we all know that isn’t true; half of the guys wearing 18oz denim, boots and vis whilst pining for a time when outlaws ruled the highways were probably losing their shit over Louis backpacks and popped polo collars a few years ago. Meanwhile Doomsday just got a few tees from Gasius which look obviously rad, similarly PRMTVO (it’s an acronym for Primitivo) are doing good things for a new name in a world where it seems like just about every second person has quit being a DJ and now “runs a brand”. The “Losing Touch” tee mixes the right amount of psychedelic reference whilst still being a shirt that if you saw a dodgey guy wearing it you’d be inclined to possibly believe his shirt’s proclamation.

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