Thursday, July 5, 2012

Wilder Style: Newport, That Stud Farm (or) Awesome Tees

For the six months I've been posting every day on TWT, I've gotten some great tips from readers. I love when people let me know about something they think would be a good fit for the blog, be it a song, a shoe, or a photo of a sweet boat. It's reaffirming for me when people reach out and tell me about things I could feature; it's a sense of connection, and makes me feel like what I'm doing on here every day isn't just spiraling out into cyberspace. One such tip recently came from a friend of mine, Spike, who told me about the tee above that his friend Dylan Schmitz designed. I saw photos of it and immediately knew I wanted to feature it on the blog.

I talked to Dylan to get the scoop on the shirts (and it turns out we know some of the same people in the boating world...not shocking, considering how small a world it is). I wanted to know what had inspired him to make the tees, and what the full story behind them was.

He told me that he and his friends, all from Newport, RI, had been talking about making shirts for a while now, and no one had taken action. So Dylan, who's done some freelance graphic design work before, decided to make the dream a reality. He found a company he liked that makes shirts of "great quality, with a faded-in look." He knew he wanted the text to have to do with Newport, and that he wanted it in a "boxy, worded in area" on the back. The anchor logo on the front was a definite. All he needed was the perfect quote.

Fortunately, necessity is the mother of invention late night internet surfing. One night, after being out with friends, he and a buddy of his found this quote from Mark Twain's autobiography:
"Newport, Rhode Island, that breeding place, that stud farm, so to speak, of aristocracy; aristocracy of the American type."
The quote is almost obnoxious, but it's funny (and true) enough that instead it works perfectly. Plus, Mark Twain said it, soooo, that's pretty good validation. I think Dylan should start his own line of shirts, because if this first one is any indication, he's pretty damn good at making them.

Here are some more images he sent me:

Nothing like a shakeweight to add to an image (above, top right).

Huge thanks to Spike for the find and the heads up, and to Dylan for taking the time to chat with me about the tees. Readers, don't hesitate to tell me about things you think could be a good fit for TWT. You'll be rewarded with eternal fame on the blog (enticing, I know).


  1. Knowing what I know of Twain, there's no doubt that quote was made with the proverbial tongue planted firmly in cheek. I love the image of Newport as a stud farm though. Anyone who has ever spent any time there in the summer knows that there is any number of willing fillies for an aristocratic stud.

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  3. Agreed, Randall. Pretty good stuff.


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