Don’t let the site design fool you. BlackSheep78 peddle humor t-shirts, plain and simple. And plain and simple would also be a fitting description for the designs/tshirts. The tees are all one or two color designs but nothing that really blows me away. That said, I could wear most of them and I do like the I Like Grass tee. It’s a great tee for Paddy’s Day. It’s green and funny and you don’t have to put it away on March 18th.
The background to the store is more interesting than the store itself I think. As you may have noticed, the tees don’t really suit the style of the web store. Looking at that web store I was expecting to see some really gothic/dark designs with lots of skulls. But then you browse you see bright happy designs, designs that you would expect to see at Busted Tees or somewhere like that.
Anyway, here is the story of how BlackSheep78 got started from Tim, who runs the site.
BlackSheep78 is essentially a black sheep in it’s own right. A far departure from what it was originally set out to become, it has since transitioned into something very different.
BlackSheep78’s initial ideation was to become a more high-end creative/illustrative based t-shirt design company. Along the way we (a friend and myself) decided that we would do everything ourselves. We did the research for business, printing, marketing, came up with a brand positioning, identity, designed shirts and a website, then ordered our equipment and supplies. We soon found out that printing was not as easy as it looked. My friend got discouraged and gave up, I on the other hand (with help from friends and family) continued on. After getting comfortable with the general printing process, one of the first things I realized is that we should have ordered a press with micro-registration and a larger drying unit. The sometimes intricate, complex, and almost always multi color shirts we had designed would never quite get that exact registration and when it was pretty spot on, it would never hold for very long. The dryer was only 16×16 and many of the designs we printed w ere larger than this, curing was inconsistent and could not be trusted. Now by myself (pretty much), I decided not to waste the money I had invested to this point and would instead redesign the shirts to primarily one color and occasionally two color college humor style shirts. The large majority of the designs are completely original with a few classics that you may have seen before. We’ve come a long way and have even farther to go but I’m pleased with the results so far, I hope you like them too.
This is no small endeavor that Tim has taken on and he’s doing a pretty good job of it. I can understand the the challenges he is facing on many levels as he tries to get his business off the ground. Tim tells me that when he can recoup his costs he is going to set up a new site to sell the type of tee he originally hoped to and I am looking forward to it but for now it’s one $14.99 (great price) humor tee at a time.