This time of year, many blogs will give out gift guides. Tech blogs will let you know the hottest gadgets. Amazon will make year end lists of the best books and CDs, as well as clue you into great gift choices. To be sure, the humble shirt blog is no different. If you search the blogosphere, you'll surely run into plenty of suggestions for everyone on your list's chest-covering needs. Here at SingulariTee, however, I wanted to give you a holiday guide with a difference. That's why I'm focusing my attention on a very underserved market: me. So if you have an Adder on your list, get out your pen, paper, and maybe a trusty credit card. I guess you can keep reading if I'm not on your list, too. Or you could add me. New friends!
1: Bears With Saws (shown above) - Pretty much the most epic thing ever. From TopatoCo, featuring web comic merch galore. A great stop for any fans of such strips as Dinosaur Comics, White Ninja, or A Softer World, but just as interesting, and sometimes moreso, to browse through unbiased. Half the fun on this shirt is not understanding the why of the ridiculous collage, and the other half is appreciating it anyway, as well as the sweet text job.
2: Captured Nostalgia - A simple drawing of a camera, but with much more impact. The black-on-white linework is stark and perfect, while the small stream of color gives a focal point to the piece. This shirt is perfect for photographers and dreamers and obviously me, and due to Threadless's swanky holiday sale, it's an easy and cheap decision to slip one into your cart while checking out for yourself. What's an extra $10, right?
3: Bees - Probably more logically titled "Elephant Head Man," this Heavy Tees shirt is something I dig for the bizarre factor, as well as the weathered feel and the colors. It's something I'd rock happily yet am tentative about biting the bullet on, which could make it a perfect surprise gift for anyone who loves oddities and surprises.
4: Das Einhörnchen (shown right) - It's adorable. It's a little evil. It's bloody well drawn. This little squirrelcorn is ideal for nearly anyone on the cute spectrum, whether in love with fuzzy bunnies or preferring a mix of creepy with their sweet. It's from A Better Tomorrow, which is a German site, so you'll give the extra gift of not making your loved one have to figure out German to get it.
5: The Great Gatsby - I've got to hand it to Urban Outfitters, the unlikely purveyor of this classic literature tee. It's easy to pass off retro film, music, even cartoons as hip fashion, but to suggest those same hipsters embrace classic literature is a pretty ballsy move. Still, it helps when the cover art is so gorgeously translated into a shirt, eschewing boxiness and opting for a navy backdrop and full-size print. As a lit nerd, I'd wear this proudly, though I'll be the first to admit part of my desire for it is to give me the proper kick in the pants to finish The Great Gatsby once and for all. If you have a Fitzgerald fan who is less of a slacker, or really any bookish sort, this could be a quite unique gift idea.
6: Avocado Man (shown left) - This one's specifically for my own sake. You're probably not going to come across this shirt.woot cult classic, because it's been reckoned away for well over a year now. Still, like those massive Lego space stations I always knew I'd never get, I have to include it. Part of the appeal is being outside the realm of what i'd normally try to scoop up. Part is the color combos. Part is that I want to imagine avocados looking like this in the wild. But what it comes down to is a desperate hunt... one of the ones that got away. If you find a copy, score for you, but if it's a men's XL, I will so hunt you down.
7: Intelligently Designed - You really can't get much simpler than this godly Cotton Factory tee. It makes a statement while remaining wearable and keeping an air of maturity in the mix. While evolution is certainly the theory of choice for the overwhelming majority of the educated, intelligent design IS evident in the tee, where the black outline and gold ink play against each other to give a brown look to the star of the shirt. A solid idea if you're looking for one more stocking stuffer for your favorite science-type, animal lover, or a gag gift for the yankee swap your Baptist neighbors are throwing.
8: Taft in the House - Love history, politics or bathtubs? Consider Amorphia Apparel, which also sells a handful of other tongue-in-cheek presidential designs. Taft's is the most family-friendly, but then, Taft is funny in general. The simple icon of an image helps keep the whole thing attractive, and while I, once again, stand by Amorphia's default suggestions, both in brown and blue, you can even create your own custom color combos. Just play it safe.
9: The Retort (shown right)- An exercise in absurdity, and frequent readers know I love me some absurdity. Big, Bold, and Colorful, like any good Design By Humans print, the designer sums it up as "a collage of public domain imagery with patterns and a touch of snobbery." Two out of three ain't bad for me! The color choices, the eyecatching patterns, and the big-ass fish make this ridiculously wearable and wearably ridiculous, but the speech bubble is the point of the shirt. Might be perfect for your favorite fisherman, but might be even more perfect for your favorite economist.
10: Black Ceremony - I don't understand "streetwear," which I believe this alleges to be, but I cannot help but be drawn to this Tank Theory tee. It's a double sided print with bold colors, beautiful flowing lines, and creepy shadow silhouettes. It's a great example of how a shirt can become wearable art. It also looks oh-so-very rockstar, which on its own is reason enough for me to be drawn to it. And because it's priced for indulgence only, it makes for a much more special gifting experience. Especially for the shirt-addict blogger who might not be able to afford it otherwise. Not that you know anyone like that.
Hopefully I've provided some fresh new ideas for the holidays. Sometimes it can be difficult to find something a little special and different, but you should be able to find something here that's just right for any size-XL-but-2X-at-Design-By-Humans on your list. Or probably people of other sizes. They might like them too.