10 T-Shirt Top 10’s of 2009

As the year comes to an end, I’d like to present to you 10 of my very own T-Shirt Top 10’s from 2009. You should note that the T-Shirts posted here are listed in no particular order and are heavily based on tees that I’ve blogged about here in the past year. 2009 was an amazing year for T-Shirts and I can’t wait to see what 2010 has in store for us all. What were your top 10 tees of 2009?

*Once Again, the lists are presented in no particular order.

Top 10 T-Shirts of 2009

There were a billion T-Shirts released in 2009 but only a few really great ones. The following 10 tees are my picks for the Top 10 tees of 2009. I own 5 of the 10 tees here and let’s just say they are on regular rotation in my T-Shirt wardrobe. There are two tees on here just because of the sheer attention that they drew (Zombama Brains and Three Wolf Moon / Three Keyboard Cat Moon). The rest are here because I absolutely love their design.

1. Mecha-Labaw by csj89. csj89 took the big prize from Design By Humans, $10,000 big with his Mecha-Labaw design.

Mecha-Labaw by csj89

2. The Struggle by Miles To Go Clothing. The struggle from Miles to Go Clothing always impressed me – it truly is a piece of art.

The Struggle by Miles To Go Clothing

3. Knuckle Collision by yonil (ShirtFight). Knuckle Collision was probably Shirtfight’s because seller of the year, I was sad to see them stop the contest portion of their site.

Knuckle Collision by Shirtfight

4. Powermitt by Johnny Cupcakes. Powermitt was my favorite Johnny Cupcakes tee of 2009 – Never Say Die came in a close second.

Johnny Cupcakes Powermitt

5. Zombama Brains by Pop-Monkey (Teefury). Zombama Brains from Teefury earned a spot on the list because of the controversy and interest it drew and for the fact that this was the first tee to outsell Shirt.Woot.

Zombama by Teefury

6. Filter Heroes by Chop Shop. Filter Heroes from our friends at the Chop Shop appeared on a ton of mainstream blogs – all photoshop power users should own this shirt.

Filter Heroes by Chop Shop

7. Three Wolf Moon / Three Keyboard Cat Moon. I thought that the Three Wolf Moon T-Shirt belonged on here due to the sheer amount of interest it garnered. And I’ve clumped Three Keyboard Cat Moon with the Three Wolf Moon tee if only because it was the fastest shirt to go to print from Threadless. Although I’d never wear either the Three Wolf or Three Cat tee, I thought that they belong on the list by default.

Three Cat Moon

Three Wolf Moon

8. The Gaming Revolution by Sean Mort (Threadless). The Gaming Revolution by Sean Mort is the second Threadless tee on the list and my absolute favorite Threadless tee of 2009, hands down.

Gaming Revolution

9. Da Vinci’s Mario by Exploded Tees. And finally we have da Vinci’s Mario by Kevin Tong, the amazing illustration made this pick a no brainer. I continually referenced it, along with iSteamPhone, on Co-Tee TV throughout the year.

Da Vinci's Mario

10. And Then I Woke Up… (Blue and White Colorway) by Ugmonk. Ugmonk made huge strides this year – and the ampersand heavy And Then I Woke Up Tee… played a huge part in their growth. It’s a classic.

And Then I Woke Up...

Top 10 Co-Tee TV Reviewed Tees of 2009

To date, I’ve recorded 50 episodes of Co-Tee TV (and hopefully we’ll get to 52 before the end of the year). That’s a lot of T-Shirts. If I did 2 tees per episode that would mean that I reviewed 96 tees total. And that number is being generous considering I’ve reviewed more than two tees in a handful of episodes. In any case, here are my picks for my Top 10 Co-Tee TV Reviewed Tees of 2009. These were the cream of the crop and are all highly recommended!

1. Stroller by Finroo. Reviewed In Episode 28: Aaitski, Finroo and Robot Strollers!

2. Otter-Tude by Rethink Clothing. Reviewed in Episode 7: Emptees Zombies, ReThink Clothing and Otters

3. Buddha by Miles To Go Clothing. Reviewed in Episode 12: Woot Worms, {miles to go} and Buddha

4. iSteamPhone by Kevin Tong. Reviewed in Episode 15: iSteamphone, AlrightOK and Salutations

5. Slide To Unlock by Milk & Eggs Co. Reviewed In Episode 32: Milk & Eggs, Slide To Unlock and iPhones

6. Through The Glass by Full Metal T-Shirt. Reviewed in Episode 22: Quixotic Clothing, Full Metal T-Shirt and Light Bulbs

7. Mack Hated Mondays by Linty Fresh. Reviewed in Episode 13: X-Ray Goggles, Linty Fresh and Mack

8. Bears, Beets, Battlestar by Doubletake Clothing. Reviewed in Episode 16: 57 Cuts, Doubletake Clothing and Battlestar Galactica

9. I Believe In The Loch Ness Monster by EIO Clothing (Excess Is OK). Reviewed in Episode 50: Co-Tee TV Episode 50: Loch Ness Monster, Supermandolini and Shooting Target

10. Filter Heroes by Chop Shop. Reviewed in Episode 39: Cottonable, Funky Koreatown and Chop Shop

Top 10 Packaging Reviewed on Co-Tee TV of 2009

1. Desired Hearts. Reviewed in Episode 38: My Book Woes, Benny Gold and Desired Hearts

2. 410BC. Reviewed in Episode 43: A Whole Lotta 410BC

3. Amon Clothing. Reviewed in Episode 46: Raglans, Amon Clothing and Get In Shape

4. Butchrd Apparel. Reviewed in Episode 42: Zipperking, Butchrd Apparel and Paul The Pig

5. Full Metal T-Shirt. Reviewed in Episode 22: Quixotic Clothing, Full Metal T-Shirt and Light Bulbs

6. A-OK. Reviewed in Episode 15: iSteamphone, AlrightOK and Salutations

7. Supermandolini. Reviewed in Episode 50: Co-Tee TV Episode 50: Loch Ness Monster, Supermandolini and Shooting Target

8. Linty Fresh. Reviewed in Episode 13: X-Ray Goggles, Linty Fresh and Mack

9. Homage Clothing. Reviewed in Episode 40: My Better Half, Homage Clothing and Kent State

10. New Math by Craig Damrauer. Reviewed in Episode 41: Melted, New Math and Pirates

Top 10 Favorite Indie Brands of 2009

I found myself constantly talking about these ten companies throughout the year. Take a look at these ten brands and you will get a sense of the style and type of design I enjoy.

1. Glennz Tees. Every shirt from Glennz Tees is a no miss hit, in my opinion. Glennz is always at the top of the popular culture scene and ready to poke fun even at an M&M’s expense.

2. Ugmonk. Jeff Sheldon produced some of the most iconic tees this year. I see big things in the future for Jeff’s brand.

3. Linty Fresh. Every month a new tee. We saw 12 new tees this year from Eric Terry and his brand Linty Fresh, I loved all of them with the exception of a rare few. With the big move to the country of cheap, China, Linty Fresh looks to make huge strides in 2010.

4. Milk & Eggs Co. This indie brand based out of California came out of nowhere during the mid part of 2009 and blew my mind with their simple and fun designs. I own probably 75% of the Milk & Eggs Co. line – that’s how much I dig their stuff.

5. 410BC. In 2009 410BC became darker and better than ever. They’ve moved away from goofy illustration tees to more adult themed designs. Growth is good and 410BC is doing a lot of growing!

6. Seibei. The king of monsters! 2009 saw a couple of new colorways for the much loved Sandwich Dino tee as well as a bunch of new monster tees. Seibei closed out the the year with a must see late winter release. David Murray left his job to focus full time on Seibei so expect huge things in 2010, including a newly redesigned website.

7. Electric Zombie. Kyle Crawford is the king of hype and rightfully so. His Electric Zombie line is worth every second of hype that it is given. Kyle released a couple of lines this year, but none could beat his recently released winter line featuring some custom cut and sew items, two of which I ended up buying.

8.Fuzzzy Ink. If you like mustaches then there’s no better place to go then Fuzzy Ink. No big releases from Fuzzy Ink just a couple of single tee releases here and there. Game Over and Identity Crises were two of the most fun tees of the year.

9. Print Liberation. Print Liberation has mastered the art of the controversial type tee. Every one of their tees seems so bold, brash and iconic.

10. Supermandolini. This Greek based online boutique is a brand to watch. After reviewing Shooting Target, I have placed Supermandolini on my permanent radar of tee companies to keep a close eye on.

Top 10 T-Shirt Designers of 2009

1. Jeff Sheldon (Ugmonk). He has a way of creating very simple yet effective designs. His type placements are impeccable.

2. Garry Booth. This illustrator is the master mind behind many of the exploded tees we’ve seen this year, including Exploded 128 and ZAP Exploded.

3. Evanimal. If you’re looking for intense and powerful illustrations then look no further than Evanimal. He is definitely one to watch out for in 2010.

4. Olly Moss. If there was one artist that I would most like steal talent from, it would be Olly Moss.

5. Alex Solis. I love Alex’s extremely detailed work.

6. FlyingMouse365. FM365 made a name for himself by submitting a new design to Threadless once a day for an entire year. An amazing feat.

7. Philip Tseng. It almost seems like every other week Threadless releases another Philip Tseng designed tee. In any case, I love his work! Mr. Roboto Goes Sightseeing is a personal favorite of mine.

8. Aled Lewis. The man also known as fatheed! Aled, is yet another prolific Threadless designer. The Meaning of Life was the definitive Aled Lewis tee of 2009.

9. Glenn Jones (Glennz Tees). Every one of Glenn’s designs leave me on the floor laughing out loud. Glennz Tees can do no wrong. His designs often leave you thinking, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

10. Wotto. Everywhere you go you see a Wotto tee. And the thing is, you know it’s a Wotto tee when you see it. He has a very distinct, one of a kind cartoony style.

Top 10 Typogrpahy Tees of 2009

1. You Are The CSS To My HTML by Pop + Shirty

You Are The CSS To My HTML

2. Hello by Buddy Carr and Antonio Carusone


3. Now Panic and Freak Out by Olly Moss (Threadless)

Now Panic and Freak Out

4. And Then I Woke Up… (Blue Colorway) by Ugmonk

And Then I Woke Up...

5. Alive and Well by Homage Clothing

Alive and Well

6. A (Reversible) by AlrightOK

A (Reversible) by AlrightOK

7. B Positive by lunchboxbrain

B Positive

8. I’m Huge On Twitter by @xenijardin (Twitter Tees)

I'm Huge on Twitter

9. I Believe In The Loch Ness Monster by EIO Clothing

I Believe In The Loch Ness Monster

10. Modern Art by New Math

Modern Art

Top 10 Geek Shirts of 2009

1. I Be Au Sm by Lawrence Villanueva (Threadless)

I Be Au Sm

2. Exploded 128 by Exploded Tees

Exploded 128 by Garry Booth

3. Rock Paper Scissors Lizard Spock by ThinkGeek

Rock Paper Scissor Lizard Spock

4. Super Cuts by J!NX

Super Cuts

5. Farewell To Arms by Cloxboy (check if 2009)

Farewell To Arms by Cloxboy

6. It Came Out of Nowhere by Aled Lewis (Shirt.Woot)

It Came Out of Nowhere by Aled Lewis

7. H1-N1 by Aaron Russell (Loiter Ink)


8. Good v Evil by Glennz Tees

Good v Evil

9. Game Over by Fuzzy Ink

Game Over by Fuzzy Ink

10. The 8-Bit Invasion by radiomode (Tilteed)

The 8-Bit Invasion

Top 10 Places To Buy A Funny T-Shirt

1. Shirts Taste Good. The place to go if funny viral videos are your thing.

2. Rizzo Tees. A quick review of their site show that they’ve got a good selection of funny food related tees (bacon, beer, breakfast, broccoli, SPAM, etc.) as well as other funny stuff.

3. Busted Tees. A big player in the funny T-Shirt arena, if you’re looking to get your giggle on, check these guys out!

4. Snorg Tees. A lot of random funny tees here, if you’re looking for something current in pop culture, they’ve probably got a tee that pokes fun at it.

5. Kosher Ham. My favorite Jewish humor site! And even if you’re not Jewish, their tees will make you crack up.

6. Crazy Dog T-Shirts. I’ve only recently started to check out Crazy Dog T-Shirts regularly, but nonetheless, they’ve got a great assortment of funny tees!

7. Loiter Ink. The home of TomBurns, the man behind the famous Communist Party Threadless tee. You’ll find a lot of his work, and some others at Loiter Ink.

8. Ban T-Shirts. Looking for funny politically inspired tees? There’s no better place to go then Ban T-Shirts.

9. Found Item Clothing. If you’re looking for a rare tee that you’ve spotted in a vintage 80’s movie then there’s no better place to start your hunt than Found Item Clothing. They specialize in recreating obscure tees from our favorite movies from yesteryear. And yes, a large bulk of them are quite humorous.

10. NerdyShirts. Nerds unite! You don’t necessarily have to be a nerd to enjoy the funny tees over at NerdyShirts – but it would help!

Top 10 Emptees Shirts

Over at the T-Shirt community and submission site, Emptees, people literally love the shirts that impress them the most by clicking on a tiny heart button. I “loved” a bunch of shirts over at Emptees throughout 2009. Here are 10 of my favorite Emptees submitted designs. I only chose from the tees that I “loved” in 2009.

1. Battle by alexmdc


2. Mighty Morphin’ by Nicolo Nimor

Mighty Morphin

3. The C0mposition by Ninthwheel

The Composition

4. Psychological Barrier by Flying Mouse

Psychological Barrier

5. Tee off round one: DC comicbook heroes by eZ-kun


6. Why So Serious by buko

Why So Serious

7. We Solve All Your Problems by mathiole


8. Lusty Man #7 by sinisterguido

Lusty Man #7

9. All the Answers by alexmdc

Picture 2

10. Nick Automatic Pencil Crew by Nicolo Nimor


Top 10 Threadless Tees of 2009

To say I follow Threadless is a gross understatement. I am mad about Threadless. Coty Loves Threadless. Here are 10 of my favorite Threadless releases of 2009.

1. I Be Au Sm by Lawrence Villanueva

2. Heartless by Juan Carlos Bueno

HEARTLESS by Juan Carlos Bueno

3. Magic Mushrooms by Ian Summers

Magic Mushrooms by Ian Summers

4. Party Animal by John Hegquist

Party Animal by John Hegquist

5. Freakanaut by Aaron Hogg

Freakanaut by Aaron Hogg

6. LightSaver by Matthijs Smitt

LightSaver by Matthijs Smit

7. Now Panic and Freak Out by Olly Moss

Now Panic and Freak Out

8. Mr. Roboto Goes Sightseeing by Philip Tseng


9. The Meaning of Life by Aled Lewis

The Meaning of Life by Aled Lewis

10. The Gaming Revolution by Sean Mort

Gaming Revolution

We’ve reached the conclusion of the final epic list of 2009! I can’t wait to do it all over again in 2010. If you enjoyed this article I would very much appreciated a little retweet or post to your Facebook page! Help to spread the word so that more people can discover these wonderful tees, indie brands and artists!


  1. says

    Thank you so much for including my Superhero Pervs design in your top. First time I am mentioned looking back at 2009 and its tees. Must say, it feels great and makes it all worth while!