Soft Touch Reviews: Secret Handshake Designs

by Andy on August 3, 2006

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Secret Handshake (SH) get a lot of love from people, like I first put up their little advertising box someone actually e-mailed me to say how good they thought SH was. So I was pretty excited to get a package from them yesterday morning. I was the happy recipient of the Sun-Ra shirt by Tim Kerr. I must admit that I did have to make a trip to Wikipedia to find out just who this Sun Ra dude was, so if I don’t quite ‘get’ it, my excuse is that I was 9 when this guy died (or ‘left the earth’s plane’, as one Wikipedian thought Sun Ra might describe it as), and wasn’t listening to much jazz at that time.

Click more for the actual tee review and my usual dose of pics.

I like the idea of putting sketches onto a t-shirt, it seems to convey a sense of energy and give soul to an image, I don’t think that this facial expression could have been captured as well using vector imagery. The use of handwriting is also pretty nice, both in the history part (lyrics perhaps, in which case handwriting is a must! It sets my emo phasers to stun), and with the bigger text that says Sun Ra. I might be analysing too much here, but it could be that Tim Kerr designed the image in such a way to reflect how Sun Ra was in control of his own recording process, as I can’t see an artist having much more control with a pen/pencil and a piece of paper. Yeah, that last sentence probably did push it a bit far!

sunra.jpgSH also print a little bit of text on their sleeves, personally I like it, but I know there are people out there that don’t think tee company’s should put self-advertising on tees unless its a logo tee. I wouldn’t want anyone to be put off from buying an SH tee just because of a little bit of writing, it’s very unobtrusive, and I didn’t even notice it when I took my first look.
The printing itself seems good quality, not too think and heavy, which is quite surprising considering there is a pretty hefty block of colour in there. The tee is printed on American Apparel, so you know what you’re getting (I do like that a lot of small stores use the same stock tees, becuase I always know what size to order), and I would describe SH’s prices as average, which isn’t exactly exciting vocabulary, but they charge a fair price for a quality product.
Costiness=$20 ($4 off their usual) URL

  • Joe

    The SH name only apears on the first few shirts we put out (Friedman, Shirilla, Kerr, and Superstar). We kinda liked it, but it was too expensive. Originally we wanted to put sewn on cloth tags at the back neckline, but we nixed that.

    Thanks for the kind words.


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