I don't commonly wear clothes with words on them. I'm not even a big fan of little symbol logos, but it's getting harder and harder to avoid those. In general, clothes should speak for themselves, without a billboard on the pocket.
So when a friend of our family started this company called Lakegirl awhile back, I wasn't paying a lot of attention. It was sweatshirts with the word "lakegirl" and I did not feel inclined to buy or wear them. Yes, I love my lake. Yes, I'm happy to be part of a lake-based community. But did I need to express that excitement across my chest? I wasn't sure that I did, even though I thought her company was wonderful and impressive and I was happy for her.
And then I moved far away and I missed my lake and my lake community terribly. Suddenly, when I was back to the lake to visit, a sweatshirt with that word emblazoned on the front held strong appeal for me. It expressed a piece of who I am, and when I was far away, it felt nice to wear it as both a reminder to myself and a notice to others.
Now, I'm lucky to be living near my lake(s) once again, but in spite of no longer feeling homesick, I still feel happy to wear items expressing my pleasure at being a Lakegirl. However, in spite of that pleasure, a few adjustments are necessary, as I am rarely happy with the cut or fit of t-shirts or sweatshirts.
Some years ago, I started paying attention to a wonderful company called Alabama Chanin. They create couture garments and also DIY kits entirely based on organic cotton jersey-knit fabrics. The books supply patterns and technique suggestions for changing the humble fabric of tee shirts into a gorgeous (and comfortable) wardrobe. I have made a number of these garments. The techniques are habit-forming, and they allow one to enjoy the fun aspects of sewing (beautiful hand work and garment creation) without some of the most annoying aspects (tricky machine issues, fabric compatibilities, disguising seams).
As a result of my addiction to the ways of Alabama Chanin and my guilt at abandoning clothing which no longer pleases me, I have a pile of tees and sweatshirts in my rebuild/rework pile. Currently I am working on one of of these. In its original form, it was boxy and oversized, shaped the way my college sweatshirts were. I hope to make it longer and leaner but still forgiving and comfy, durable but with a touch of the hand-sewn. Stay tuned.