By Richard Hernandez
Many students worry about what they are going to wear to school the next day, but not many go out and actually make the clothing that they are wearing. Juniors Melanie Allen and Joey Hechler on the other hand do quite the opposite. After gaining inspiration from other clothing brands, such as Underbelly and What If Co., the duo went out to create their own creative brand known by the name of Thrifty Exhibit Applications, or TEA Shirts.
“Tea Shirts is the brainchild of two hard working creative minds,” Allen said.
Tea shirts allow for a change in the way that people buy their clothing. Not only does Tea Shirts offer their signature designs with their “unlmtd” line, but they also offer the customer the chance to be creative by allowing them the leeway to determine what they want their Tea Shirt to look like.
“It’s a way for us to express our love for design and art by creating our own shirts with our “unlmtd” line,” Allen said. “With our “lmtd” line, we give you a chance to put your own ideas onto a shirt. You decide how much freedom you want us to have with it, and we go from there. It’s unique in the way that you will be the only one that ever has it.”
Creativity is never lost during the process as both Hechler and Allen always have something in store for their designs, leading to desgins that they are proud to make.
“My favorite was a shirt we made where we used strips of different colored paint to print a phrase, and the colors blended together. It looked like a rainbow,” Hechler said. “We’ve been trying to find another purpose to employ this technique again, but we’ve yet to find time and the means to do so.”
Though both Allen and Hechler balance school and extracurricular activities, they look forward to working on their Tea shirt projects.
“[We look forward to] seeing how the shirts turn out after tons of hard work, and seeing peoples’ reactions to the way their orders come out, especially when we feel insecure about them,” Allen said.
The duo responsible for Tea shirts has no intention of slowing down and has high hopes for the future of their business.
“[We plan to stay around] as long as we can keep people interested, which will hopefully be a long time,” Allen and Hechler collectively stated.