This Summer’s Wardrobe Staple? Make It A Statement T-shirt

Statement T-shirts

by grazia |
Updated on

More often than not, you’ll find us fashion folk preoccupied with the search for the perfect white T-shirt(heavyweight cotton, high neck and a box fit, since you ask). But that doesn’t mean that our hearts don’t skip a beat when we see a heavily-printed, multicoloured, hand-embroidered witty slogan, patchwork or tie-dye tee. (See the recent furore surrounding Loewe’s ‘I Told Ya’ slogan tee, loved by Zendaya, Josh O’Connor and JFK Jr himself). World, meet your current wardrobe refresher: the personality tee. Yes, we’re talking cutesy cartoons, tongue-in-cheek slogans, kitsch prints, ’90s band merch and enigmatic internet lingo. Forget chic and timeless, this is all about a loud fashion moment.

Zendaya in Loewe's 'I Told Ya' T-Shirt ©Getty

In pole position is @thefootballgall (aka Diana Al Shammari), the London-based designer who’s customising vintage soccer kits by hand-embroidering them with floral motifs, as recently seen on Joe Jonas during a concert (needless to say, she’s going viral).

Like most celebrities, Rihanna, too, is partial to a top with character. Over the years, she’s been an avid supporter of London designer Conner Ives’ signature upcycled patchwork T-shirts and bandana tops. And fashion enthusiasts were won over by Rihanna’s recent archive A/W ’03 Comme Des Garçons top.

Fashion writer and brand consultant Emma Hope Allwood is one of them, having previously scored a top from the same collection. ‘My biggest fashion fear is looking generic,’ she says. ‘For me, a vintage graphic tee (ideally in a child’s size for that perfect tight, cropped fit) is such an easy way to turn a boring outfit into one that feels unique to me and my style, as well as a reflection of my years of collecting clothes – all with their own stories and memories.’

Rihanna in a Comme Des Garçons Top ©Getty

And the market for the apparel equivalent of a mood ring is booming: Everpress, which offers a huge array of limited slogan tees reminiscent of the nonsensical artworks of David Shrigley and Ganni, whose logo designs you can’t escape in the Saturday morning queue for a cardamom bun, are among the best brands cashing in on T-shirts that do the talking for you.

So whether you find said souvenir in your loft, while browsing vintage T-shirt e-tailer Jerks Store for a rare ’90s Jawbreaker band tee or succumb to the ‘Daddy’s Little Meatball’ ringer T-shirt on your next trip to NYC, a personality tee is the easiest way to add some oomph to your get-up. Fashion that makes you feel something other than ‘quiet’ and ‘luxurious’? We’re sold.

Keep scrolling for Grazia's edit of the best statement tees to buy now.

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