Getaway Gorilla and Harry Hippo from Omunky

I love it when new brands contact me excited about their product because it gets me excited! Rick Waters from new clothing brand, Omunky, recently contacted me about his newest tee, Harry Hippo. Of course, I head on over and check out the Omunky products and am intrigued the offerings. If you read this blog you know that I am a sucker for character pieces. Harry Hippo and Gabe The Gorilla are both characters in the current Omunky line. The best part is that each of the tees come with a background story about the character featured on the shirt. My favorite from the pair has got to be Getaway Gorilla – love that shirt!

Omunky refers to itself as an eco-friendly t-shirt ocmpany. They used organic cottons and pre-consumer recycled preshrunk cotton. Omunky shirts are available now from $20-$22.

Harry Hippo

Getaway Gorilla

Getaway Gorilla

I Run On Biofuel

It’s 2009 and so why aren’t all cars being run with some type of biofuel? Forget fossil fuels, that was so last century. We’ve got to lose our dependence on oil. The United States must play catch up and start innovating so that we can stop relying on foreign countries for our fuel. OK, I’ll get off of my little soap box now!

You can profess your interest in biofuel by wearing this shirt from our friends at Rizzo Tees. I am sure that many of the readers can relate to that mug of ice cold beer. I think, however, that the design could have featured a corn on the cob and would have made just as much sense, in fact, I think it would have been a much more powerful and insightful shirt had it been a piece of corn instead of a mug of beer. But that might just be me!

You can pick up I Run On Biofuel from Rizzo Tees for $15! Want to know a secret? You can save 10% on your entire Rizzo Tees order by using the coupon code “COTY” at checkout. Score!

I Run On Biofuel by Rizzo Tees

Indie Tee Spotlight #12: Robit Studios

In this weeks edition of The Indie Tee Spotlight, I highlight a cool little small business venture led by Steve Orlando, self-described as a reluctant leader, disillusioned romantic and uneloquent philosophaster. Orlando started Robit Studios earlier this year with friend Jeff Gerzseny out of their frustration with graphic tees. 

I had the wonderful opportunity to chat with Steve about the company he founded, Robit Studios, and why he aspired not to be “just another pretentious t-shirt company.” He discusses his love for small-business and why it’s smart (and worth it) to go “green.”

1. How long has Robit Studios been around? What inspired you to start a T-shirt brand?

We launched our website in March of this year. However the original idea and preparations for that launch began a few years ago. The inspiration to start a brand started when Jeff (the other half of Robit Studios) and I were frustrated with the unfunny slogan tees and obnoxious graphic tees that dominate the retail world. This was before we knew about places like Threadless. Jeff had some screen printing experience and a small wooden press from school so we decided to give it a shot.

2. The tagline “just another pretentious t-shirt company” can be found on the Robit Studios site. What do you mean by this?

When we first began brainstorming ideas and concepts for shirts we thought we were going to revolutionize the t-shirt world. However, as we began studying our competition and becoming familiar with the t-shirt blogging scene we realized that a lot of people not only had the same ideas, but were sometimes better executed. It made me realize that we can’t take ourselves too seriously.


3. Many of your tees have some sort of political message associated with it. Did you start Robit with the intention of producing politically inspired tees?

It wasn’t intentional. But, like a lot of people, we’ve been caught up in the interesting political environment we’ve had over the past few years. I also think that there are very few political t-shirts that are subtle in their message. For example, I would never wear a t-shirt that said “Buck Fush”. I think there was an unmet demand for shirts like “Chance of Reign”.

4. Strong ideals seem to be a huge part of the way Robit operates. From using only environmentally friendly inks to printing on sweat-shop free tees to hand printing each shirt. What made you decide to go the “green” route (and market yourselves as such) and why is this so important for Robit Studios considering the higher cost of these environmentally friendly products.

When we first seriously began discussing the creation of Robit Studios we knew we wanted to do it in a socially and environmentally friendly way. Since then I began working on my MBA in Environmentally Sustainable Management which helped us implement those ideas into our business model. I believe that true sustainability is the solution that will allow us to continue living on the planet in a way we’re familiar with. The beauty of sustainability is that it doesn’t conflict with capitalism, but actually complements it.

5. Your about page says “We [Robit Studios] gear our product toward anyone that appreciates the small businesses and creative minds, or the efforts of individuals against careless corporations that pander to the lowest common denominator.” What is it about small businesses, as compared to huge corporations, that gets you excited? What has the experience of owning and operating a small business been like for you?

Small businesses rock, simple as that. Just imagine if your only choice of t-shirt had to come from Wal-Mart. It doesn’t take much more than that to get me excited about the hundreds of small independent t-shirts brands that are available at my fingertips.

The experience of being a small business owner has been great. Knowing that there are people around the world who are wearing something I created feels incredible. This summer we got to do some festivals and I met a lot of amazing people, artists and bands. We’re teaming up with an amazing artist, Sean Madden, for some new t-shirts as well as another project which we’re hoping to launch soon.

6. Two of my favorite tees from the Robit Studios Store are “Chance of Reign” and “Ragingly Inefficient.” What message are you trying to send with these two tees?

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