Chain Reaction: logo t-shirts

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LogotshirtDo you know what I love? I love it when you get a trend which responds to another trend and then you get a trend which responds to that one and pretty soon you end up with a big chain of statements and responses where the fun is trying to stay ahead of it all.

So, for example you have Katherine Hamnet’s political T-shirt slogans in the 80s, which Frankie Goes to Hollywood then popularised. Various people referenced this trend in the intervening years (my favourite was the House of Jazz’s ‘Donatella Says More’ T, circa 1999) but then House of Holland came along with their fashion in-jokes in nu-rave neons. This sparked a huge trend this summer (you might have noticed if you have eyes) with every store in the high street coming up with their own big block lettered slogan. The best I saw was ‘I Started This Trend’, which to me was the perfect summation of the whole sartorial conversation.

This is the effect graphic designers Experimental Jetset were trying to create with their John, Paul, Ringo & George
T-shirt back in 2001. They were self-consciously tried to design a new
type of band T-shirt and it seems to have worked. The design team have
collected some of the variations here
and, despite claiming they wanted to create a new archetype, they seem
peeved people have copied it. Not included is this one, from Manifest
via Eastwest. This is my favourite, as it features the names of the Wu-Tang Clan. Why would you want a Beatles T-shirt anyway?