March 10, 2018: T-shirts and Tea Cups

“Every child is an artist, the problem is staying an artist when you grow up”

– Pablo Picasso

A few weeks ago I was at a Vertical Alignment meeting. As is per usual at many a Webb City staff meeting, we began with a meet-and-greet activity. Walking around the group sporting my super stylish Pompeii headband (thank you Mary Sears) I walk up to the third person. I extend my hand and say, “Hello I’m Laura.” My new partner tells me her name and says, “you’re the t-shirt lady, right?”

This gave me a good chuckle. I have to admit, if I have to go by any moniker, I’m more than cool with that one. And, it’s true. I design a lot of t-shirts. Enough that the company I fulfill most my orders with has assigned me a personal contact.

I once tried to count how many I’ve made in the seven years that I’ve worked at Webb. I don’t think I ever got an accurate count. I can tell you it’s at least 12 separate designs. It gets a little hectic in the money gathering and getting out individual orders.

No matter the parts that are less thrilling, I do really enjoy the functionally creative aspect of t-shirt design. I love opportunities to satisfy curiosity and creativity in different outlets (writing, painting, etc.). Most of those outlets are very personal and even private. T-shirt design lets me stretch my comfort zones and push out of my introversion (you know because it’s a healthy thing to do…) in a somewhat comfortable (for me) space. Maybe that sounds silly but it’s what works for me, even at 13 when I was the new girl in town.

I didn’t start designing t-shirts just for Webb City. The first t-shirt I ever designed was for middle school band. Our instructor decided we needed a group shirt. He allowed the students to submit designs. I don’t remember how many kids came up with something. The whole band voted on which they liked best.

I remember I voted on a someones design that had claw slashes, or something like it. It was very cool.My design was a little haphazard. I designed it on a cool program, that was only a couple years old, Word. I remember I included just about every picture related to instruments I could find on the ClipArt addition.

I am a well known pack rat, especially when something has sentimental value. (I still have a mini tea set, still in the package. My Great Grandma Earp got it for me well past the appropriate age. I kept it because she was well into her 90’s and despite deteriorating health had physically gone to the store to buy it for me.) Being so thorough of a keep-saker I was disappointed to find that I hadn’t kept the shirt (though I did find my 5th grade graduation t-shirt).

Band lasted for six years (4th-9th), but the “t-shirt’n” is hanging on strong.

-Peace Out

P.S.- I’m super excited for everyone to enjoy design number 13… the Slice of Life shirt for 2018!




5 thoughts on “March 10, 2018: T-shirts and Tea Cups

  1. Caitlin Bever says:

    This introvert gets where you’re coming from! I force myself out of my comfort zone with the white board drawings for my students. I, too, am a packrat when it comes to things with sentimental value. I’m looking forward to seeing this years Slice of Life t-shirt!! Maybe you’ve moved past the days of designing them on Word… 🙂


  2. Julie Stover says:

    Earp…are you related to Wyatt?!! I keep things that are sentimental as well. I have a house full of things and some I’d like to pass on to my kids. Right now, they are young and uninterested in these old things!! One day…they will cherish them as I have…I have faith!


    • I am. Or at least my Grandma Koch (maiden Earp) is. She is a long distance niece, I think? My dad walked me through the lineage once but I got lost. (My other Grandma was a Lee and a relative of Robert E. Lee… seems the women have the more decorative branches in their family trees.)
      They’ll get there one day. There is something about having a tangible reminder of those you loved. It brings great comfort. The comfort only gets stronger the older you get. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s