Support Linsanity

I admit that I’ve just jumped on the Jeremy Lin bandwagon. I’ve seen the highlights and I have even sat through a game and watched him play. He is the truth. The only question now is whether or not he can play alongside Melo. We will see. Jeremy Lin is primed to become the first ever bonafide Asian-American NBA superstar. You’ve got my support, buddy.

Linsanity is available now from Nike for $25.

Clintees: T-Shirts With A NYC Attitude

Clintees is an amazing little brand based out of New York with a brash collection of T-Shirts featuring iconic faces and logos with a distinctly subversive edge that will separate you from the rest of the kids on the street.

“I adore Clint ever since I shot his workshop for Dwell. Whenever I wear my I Can’t Afford To Love NY shirt I get stopped on the street. It’s bold and makes people smile.” -Bradford Shellhammer, CCO and Co-Founder at Fab.com

I have to agree with Shellhammer, that I Can’t Afford To Love NY tee is an eye catcher and it speaks the truth. I still love New York, though, even if I can only afford it two weeks at a time. Right now you can score an amazing deal on these Clintees designs at Fab.com. Normally $20, they are on sale for the next two days for $16. Fab.com is an invite only website featuring some of the best designed products on the planet at a discount price. If you’re not yet a Fab.com member, here’s your invite from me to you. You can thank me later.

Shirt Detects When You’re Being Poisoned (or Drunk)

Now this is pretty rad. Warning Signs is a new type of T-Shirt designed by New York University students, Nien Lam and Sue Ngo. It is designed to detect the presence of large amounts of Carbon Monoxide. I can see it being useful if you ever find yourself stuck in your car inside of an enclosed garage, but I fear that at the point the warning sign may be a bit moot. In the video below, you can see the “veins” in the heart below turn to a light blue color in the presence of large amounts of carbon monoxide. The duo also say that they are working on a T-Shirt that will detect when you’ve had a bit too much to drink. I’d buy that shirt.

“Warning Signs is a visualization of the pollution that exists invisibly all around us. When the wearable senses carbon monoxide, the piece subtly changes color and pattern to indicate higher levels of carbon monoxide in the atmosphere to the wearer and those around him or her. This piece was designed and created by Nien Lam and Sue Ngo.”

Introducing the Brooklyn New Yorkers

It’s no secret that the New Jersey Nets will be moving to Brooklyn, New York in 2012. However, I assumed that they would take their longtime moniker with them and become the Brooklyn Nets. It looks like this may not be the case. Two lawyers representing the Nets have trademarked the name “Brooklyn New Yorkers”, along with three possible logos.

Tauntr, the popular insult blog, decided to take have a go at the New Yorkers logo. Not only did they incorporate the Brooklyn Bridge into the logo, but they also squeezed in half a hipster. They say that Brooklyn is the hipster capital of the world and so it’s only appropriate that a V-Neck wearing, PBR drinking, thick-glasses wearing, hipster with ironic facial hair would grace the New Yorkers logo.

The Brooklyn New Yorkers T-Shirt is available now at Tauntr for $14.99.

Oven Fresh Dreams: Where Dreams Are Made

You remember my friend Carlos J. EasyBake, right? He not only makes wonderful baked goods, but is also the purveyor of some damn sexy T-Shirts. Carlos has really been pumping out some awesome stuff with the Oven Fresh Dreams “Collaborate & Dream” Series. Oven Fresh Dreams isn’t a clothing brand per se, but OFD does collaborate with some of the best indie designers. You just need to look at his recent collaborations with Reuben Levi of GRITS Apparel, Nick Automatic and Filipino designer Chad Manzo to see how serious OFD really is. The latest OFD shirt is called Gritty Dreams and was a collaboration between a friend that he made while living in Houston, Texas.

“Levi (GRITS designer & owner) & I have been good friends for several months now. We met through mutual friends while I living in Houston. We instantly gained respect for each other during one of my weekly dinner parties. The “Gritty Dreams” collaboration shows the connection between the New York City & Houston lifestyles. It also symbolizes the bond I made with Levi & Houston. We are both dreamers, who know how to keep it trill & you can too!” – Carlos J. Easybake

The Oven Fresh Dreams X GRITS Apparel tee, Gritty Dreams comes in two colorways. The New York Knicks colorway (top) is available at Oven Fresh Dreams for $20, while the Houston Oilers (bottom) colorway is available over at GRITS Apparel for $25.

Below are two sneak peeks at some upcoming Oven Fresh Dreams pieces. The purple Star Wars / Legend of Zelda mashup was designed by Filipino artist Chad Manzo. Below that, is the second Oven Fresh Dreams X Nick Automatic collaboration tee. I’ve got their first collab tee, and trust me when I say that I want version 2.0.

I’ll keep you guys updated and let you all know when these two go on sale. Keep an eye out! Now, go bake stuff.

Sistine: Live and Let Live

You can say that at times I can be pretty jaded by overhyped emails notifying me of a new clothing brand or a just released seasonal line. I get a lot of these emails and most of the time, the hype isn’t worth the product. Sistine, a progressive streetwear and lifestyle brand based out of New York is different. I checked out their site and was blown away by their unique designs. It’s almost as if their T-Shirts deserve to be framed and hung on the wall of an Art Gallery in Manhattan.

Sistine’s winter collection is called Live and Let Live and it features 8 eclectic designs with a splash of pop. Imprint and I Am Not Young Enough To Know Everything are two of my favorites from the winter collection.

Imprint is inspired from Hermann Rorschach’s classic inkblot test. For the most part, I think psychoanalysis is utter bullshit but for some reason I’ve always been fascinated by the Rorschach inkblot test. It’s used by psychoanalysts as a tool to record and analyze a subject’s personality characteristics and emotional functioning using psychological interpretations. I’ve always wondered what I would say if presented with inkblot test.

I Am Not Young Enough To Know Everything is a quote from the great Oscar Wilde. It’s a reminder that the older you get the more you realize just how little you know.

I also have to mention a design from Sistine’s summer release. The shirt is called Stay Hungry Stay Foolish. The quote originally appeared on the back cover of the Whole Earth Catalogue in 1974. It’s memorable to me because Steve Jobs famously referenced this quote in his iconic 2005 commencement speech at Stanford University. Stay Hungry Stay Foolish. I live by those words.

If you love fashion and you dig art then I highly recommend that you checkout the rest of Sistine’s winter line. The shirts are priced on the high end at $36 a piece, but hey, can you really put a price on a well thought out piece of art? Nah, don’t think so.

When Silent Pandas Attack Rob Pruitt

Some of you might remember that about two weeks ago I posted a story about New York based artist Rob Pruitt ripping off the popular Threadless T-Shirt, When Pandas Attack. The tee was designed AJ Dimarucot and Jimmy Benedict (aka jimiyo), despite this, neither artists received attribution for the design nor did either provide Pruitt with permission to use the design.

Since then, the close knit T-Shirt community has been discussing this hot topic, with one forum thread on the popular T-Shirt site Emptees receiving 300+ posts regarding the topic.

Threadless, a popular Internet based T-Shirt company with a tight knit and vocal community decided to take things into their own hands. A handful of Threadless faithful made their way to Pruitt’s “Pattern and Degradation” gallery in West Village for a silent protest of sorts, with each member decked out in the original When Pandas Attack T-Shirt. Oh, and they also had a huge panda accompanying them. Threadless posted a few photos from the event and promises to share video. And guess what, Pruitt was at the gallery.

“Yesterday in NYC at Gavin Brown’s Enterprise, Threadless fans and staffers staged a silent attack against the use of a Threadless design, “When Pandas Attack” (which was originally a collab by Jimiyo and AJ Dimarucot). Rob Pruitt, the artist who allegedly misappropriated the design (to put it kindly) was actually in the gallery at the time, and was completely baffled. We’re sure the guy sneaking around in a panda suit helped our silent yet powerful cause too! Talk about art creating art creating one very confused “artist.”

Now you’re wondering why Threadless doesn’t just sue Pruitt for copyright infringement. It turns out that since Threadless is crowdsourced, they only keep the rights to the apparel, while the original artists hold the rights to the actual design. So therein lies the problem. AJ Dimarucot, one of the co-designers is based in the Philippines, which makes things quite complicated. he wants to take action, but because he lives so far away, it is difficult for him to do so. And Jimiyo has gone on record as being quite apathetic to the whole situation.

So what to do? Well, first off, we can start by showing Pruitt that he is wrong. If you live in New York:

  1. Show up to the gallery wearing you When Pandas Attack T-Shirt and ask Pruitt why he ripped off two artists without giving attribution or getting permission.
  2. If you don’t have a When Pandas Attack T-Shirt, then show up anyway, and question him and/or bug the staff or curators about the situation. Let people know that he ripped off this piece.
  3. Post about this story on your blog, or better yet, RT this post or link to it on your Facebook page so that when people Google Pruitts name, this and the other posts linked will also show up.

Stealing art is bad, even pandas know that.

When Pandas Attack

When Pandas Attack

When Pandas Attack

When Pandas Attack

When Pandas Attack

When Pandas Attack

Photos via Threadless’ Official Facebook Page.

The Seal of Dreams

Dreams are a funny thing. For some people, dreams tend unravel quickly. For others, dreams take some time and come true at the most surprising of moments. For Carlos J. EasyBake, Oven Fresh Dreams is a dream in progress that was born out of his passion for baking, tattoos and T-Shirts. Oven Fresh Dreams was inspired by clothing lines such as Paul Frank, Johnny Cupcakes, and Benny Gold, with the hope of intertwining the t-shirt, tattoo, and baking community.

I had the opportunity to meet up with Mr. EasyBaske on a recent visit to New York and he invited me to meet up with him at the bakery that he works at. We chatted about out common interests: T-Shirts and food! It was awesome to learn that Carlos was a foodie like myself and I had a great time picking Carlos’ brain on all things food and restaurant related in NYC. We even had a chance to stop by a few of his recommended dining spots, and of course, they were amazing experiences. The one thing that I did get from my visit with Carlos was that his passion for the things that he loves (baking, tees, family) is 100% pure.

The big dream for Carlos is to one day open his own bake shop, and fuse T-Shirt and skate culture into it. The Seal of Dreams T-Shirt is an indication that Mr. EasyBake is taking the right steps into the right direction. He has done a great job at branding Oven Fresh Dreams so far (he has over 1600 fans on Facebook) and has made connections with some amazing people within the T-Shirt community, like Nicolo Nimor of Nick Automatic, who designed one of his first collaboration tees.

“This shirt represents the dreams we carry with us every day. Oven Fresh Dreams is much more than a baking, lifestyle company. It’s a movement that embraces individuality & achieving anything we put our minds to. By wearing this shirt you’re letting everyone know you’re not afraid to take risks because you’re a dreamer!”

The Seal of Dreams is printed on a white American Apparel tee and is available now from Oven Fresh Dreams for $15.99. Go pick one up now and start to make your dreams a reality!

Oven Fresh Dreams

Oven Fresh Dreams

A Visit To Jon Wye’s New York City Boutique

I’ve been a fan of Jon Wye since he first contacted me in 2008 when I was just starting out with this blog. He was one of the first guys that saw potential in my website and he even sent me one of his custom leather belts for me to check out and review. I was a newbie to the blog scene back then and so it was a bit more difficult to get products to review than it is for me now. Needless to say, I was blown away by his generosity and by the fact that he was excited by my site and what I was doing.

Since then, I’ve been following the Jon Wye brand and have provided updates here whenever possible. The most exciting news from Jon Wye recently was the opening of his brick and mortar shop in the Flatiron district of New York City. It’s a little boutique that is located inside The Limelight, an old church that has been converted into a three story market space for fledgling creatives and entrepreneurs.

Jon Wye is known for his custom made leather belts and his store has every variety that you could ever want. It’s an eclectic style that will appease anyone who is looking for complimentary accessories that do not comply with the status quo. Jon Wye is much more than the status quo, he is original and his products inspire creativity.

Unfortunately, neither Jon nor his right hand man, Jeff, was there when I stopped by. However, the nice young lady that was manning the store was quite nice. I told her that I knew Jon and that I had blogged about his products in the past. She was more than happy to allow me to snap photos of his shop and I was more than happy to snap away.

The shop itself is amazing. I shouldn’t be too surprised considering Jon has an impeccable eye for detail and perfection. It’s a small space but it is pretty grand. There’s a fireplace in the shop and also a cheeky little painting of Jon that graces you as you walk up the steps to his shop. And of course, you’ll find all of his T-Shirts and belts neatfully displayed against the walls. Located on the top floor, it is as if the Jon Wye shop is the centerpiece of The Limelight. When you first enter the old church and then look up, the bold red and yellow Jon Wye insignia just captures you.

If you are ever in New York City and have any interest in T-Shirts and/or quality leather products, then Jon Wye is a must stop destination. Tell him that I said hi!

Jon Wye
656 Avenue of the Americas
3rd Fl Limelight Marketplace
Manhattan, NY 10011
Neighborhood: Flatiron

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Toronto/New York Trip Day 5

Day 5 T-Shirt of Choice: FFB Raglan by Fur Face Boy

NYC Neighborhoods Visited: Theater District, City Hall, Brooklyn Bridge, Union Square, and TriBeCa.

Today was a big day and long day. We kicked it off by crossing one big and long bridge – the Brooklyn Bridge! Completed in 1883, the Brooklyn Bridge is one of the oldest suspension bridges in the United States. It is 5,989 feet (1825 m) long and 85 feet (26 m) wide and it connects Manhattan to Brooklyn. This was my second time crossing the bridge so I knew what to expect, but this was Michelle’s first time. I kind of wish that I had timed the length of time it took us to cross the bridge.

49 Street

Brooklyn Bridge

Once we reached Brooklyn, we headed straight for Grimaldi’s Pizzeria. After getting lost for a little bit, we finally found this little pizza gem on Old Fulton St. The establishment has quite a storied history:

“Patsy Grimaldi, the founder of Grimaldi’s, learned to make pizza at his uncle Patsy Lancieri’s pizzeria (trained under pizza patriarch Gennaro Lombardi of Lombardi’s Pizzeria) in 1941 at age ten. He eventually opened his own restaurant, Patsy’s Pizzeria, in Brooklyn. Grimaldi originally planned to build it in Manhattan. However, he believed that coal-fired brick ovens produced the best pizza, and it was illegal to build new coal ovens in Manhattan. As a result, he moved to the current location at South Ferry, Brooklyn.”

We ordered a small pizza with pepperoni, italian sausage and mushrooms. My first bite reminded just how much I loved this place the first time I visited in 2007. Grimaldi’s is awesome and it will be one of those place that I will always visit whenever I visit New York. The crust is perfectly thin, the meats were nice and fresh and spiced perfectly, and the cheese was thick and plentiful. Mouthgasm? Hell yes. The amazing part is that the amount of time it takes to cook a Grimaldi’s pizza in their over 100 year old brick oven is faster than it takes a Pizza Hut to cook a pie in their modern ovens. Whenever I eat pizza, I will think of Grimaldi’s. Grimaldi’s is the real deal. If you want good pizza, you must pay a visit to the mecca of pizza, Grimaldi’s Pizzeria.

Grimaldi's

Grimaldi's

Grimaldi's

Once we had our fill of Grimaldi’s, we headed toward Union Square so that Michelle could make a stop at Trader Joe’s. What’s awesome about Union Square is it’s commanding and engaging intersection. People come to union square to relax, sit, people watch, mingle and even play chess. And since it’s surrounded by shops, it’s the perfect place for tourists who want to escape the madness of Times Square.

Saddled by bags of Trader Joe’s nuts, we headed back to the hotel for a little rest. We needed that rest so that we wouldn’t fall asleep during our broadway experience – American Idiot! In factor, American Idiot was the entire reason why we began planning this trip. I am a huge fan of Green Day so I had been dying to see this musical by Billy Joe Armstrong, featuring music from the iconic 2004 Album, American Idiot and select songs from their latest album, 21st Century Breakdown.

The St. James Theater is the home of American Idiot and lucky for us, Hotel Mela is located a measly 3 minute walk away. We left the hotel at 7:30 pm for an 8 pm show and arrived in our seats with ample time to spare and take in the inspiring interior of the St. James Theater. Once the curtains went up, the madness started and it was complete rock and roll for 90 minutes. Non-stop punk and non-stop Green Day for 90 minutes. I loved it. I loved every burning second of this musical. I loved it so much that I want to see it again. The songs came alive right before my eyes and I was in Green Day heaven. Did I say I loved it? I loved it.

American Idiot - St. James Theater

American Idiot - St. James Theater

After waiting around a bit for the stars of the show to meet and greet, we jetted off to TriBeCa to dine at Ninja Restaurant. I had been itching to go there ever since I first heard Dan Trachtenburg and the rest of the Totally Rad Show crew talk about it in one of their past episodes. I was sold when Dan mentioned that Ninjas appear out of nowhere. Awesome.

When you first arrive at the unassuming front door, you are greeted by a host in a small room with an elevator. I don’t want to spoil the experience for those of you planning to pay a vista to Ninja Restaurant, but, I will say that the Totally Rad Show guys swear right – Ninja do appear out of nowhere. Oh, and if given a chance, take the secret yet dangerous path. You’ll love it. Michelle and I found ourselves still talking about it the day after. It was that fun.

Ninja Restaurant

Ninja Restaurant

The food at the Ninja Restaurant was okay compared to the Ninja experience. We had the Four Elements sushi (California roll topped with tuna, salmon, yellowtail and eel) and the Spicy Tuna sushi to start. Being from Hawaii, we know good Sushi – this was just okay sushi. For the main entree, I had the Ninja Paella (orzo pasta with seasweed and miso marinated salmon, short-neck clams and veggies) and Michelle had the Poseidon’s Pot (a pot of mussels and calamari, steamed with white soy sauce and sake). The serving size of my entree was unexpectedly huge. Five large filets of salmon was the main attraction for my entree. The salmon was cooked well, but again, living in Hawaii, I’ve had better fish prepared and cooked much better. Still, the Ninja Restaurant is quite the experience. You’re even treated to a Ninja magic show prior to eating. Neat!