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Now a timeless piece of clothing for anyone’s wardrobe, the printed t-shirt has come a long way since the beginning. Derived from the shape of the garment’s outline, the word t-shirt didn’t even make it into the dictionary until the 1920s. Originally worn only as an undergarment, the t-shirts we know and love today evolved from its use in the 19th century by miners and stevedores, who found it as a convenient covering for hot environments.

Fact: In 1939, the motion picture debut of The Wizard of Oz saw the first ever promotional printed t-shirt.

Although we all frequently wear t-shirts as the only piece of clothing on our upper bodies today, this only became popular 30-years on from its entrance into the dictionary, when famous American actor Marlon Brando was seen wearing a custom made t-shirt as a standalone, outerwear garment in the 1951 film, A Streetcar Named Desire. Along with some other appearances in t-shirts from influential people like James Dean and even Elvis Presley, wearing a t-shirt on its own suddenly became cool and rebellious.

Fact: Over 2 billion t-shirts are sold every year around the world.

Around the same time of the t-shirt becoming a symbol of rebel youth, some companies based in Miami, Florida began to decorate their t-shirts with characters and resort names. The very first is a company called Tropix Togs, who had the original licence for printing Walt Disney characters. In particular, the Mickey Mouse t-shirt was popularised quickly, with thanks to its appearance in the 1983 film, ‘The Outsiders’. This helped even more to bring the printed t-shirt into mainstream culture.

With so many designs available for printing onto a t-shirt, let your creativity flow and bring your ideas to life with My Garment Factory. Look out for part 2 of our blog, as we continue to explore how the printed t-shirt became so popular.

In My Garment Factory’s first tutorial, we’ll show you how easy it is to make your very own reusable shopping bag, out of an old printed t-shirt.

All you’ll need is: 

  • A t-shirt (plain or printed)
  • Paperclip or safety pin
  • Scissors

And that’s it!

Step 1 –

Cut both sleeves off of your t-shirt. Keep these for later.

Step 2 –

Make your bag opening by cutting either a round, square, or V shape at the top. (We’ve done a square one)

Step 3 –

Make two small slits at the very bottom of your t-shirt, about the same distance apart (but not past the stitching).

Step 4 –

Cut strips out of the shirt sleeves and stretch them slightly so they become longer and slightly curled.

Step 5 –

Tie one end of your strip to the safety pin or paperclip.

Step 6 –

Feed this through one of the openings in the slits you made, until it comes out of the other side.

Step 7 –

Tie the two ends together.

Step 8 –

Repeat for this process for the other slit.

Step 9 –

Tie all of the strands together as tight as you can, to help make your bag sturdy at the bottom.

Step 10 –

And you’re done! Now just make sure you remember your new bag when you’re out shopping next...

Share your new upcycled printed t-shirt bags with us by posting your photos on our Facebook wall.

Why not make a few and give them out as extra Christmas presents? Forget gift wrap - just put all of their presents in their handmade t-shirt totes and help reduce waste.

Following on from our post last week regarding the recent Office of Fair Trading report, which highlighted the high costs of school uniform, we’ve put together a short presentation video which quickly explains our solution to this problem. 

We’d love it if you could watch it and share it with your friends.

We think our new modern approach to buying school uniform will really help to simplify the way things are currently done, saving both time and money for everyone.

If you like the sound of our idea and would like your school to take part in our modern solution, make sure you speak to us today. 

Call us on 02920 741 678


You might have heard on the news recently about a new report that’s been released by the Office of Fair Trading. With thorough investigation conducted by IFF Research, it has just been revealed that many parents currently have a lack of choice in purchasing their children’s school uniform. This is mainly due to schools rightly wanting to ensure consistency in the appearance of their pupils, but this has left mums and dads around the UK out of pocket due to not being able to shop around for a bargain.

At My Garment Factory Cardiff, we are no strangers to this problem. As parents ourselves, we understand the sometimes painful and costly procedure of having to shop for school uniform for your children. Long before this report was published, we came up with an easy-to-use solution to help resolve this problem, by offering all schools in the South Wales area a new, modern way to purchase school clothing.

Our innovative platform offers a simple process for parents, allowing them to order conveniently from the comfort of their own home, receive free delivery, and at the best prices around comparable to those of supermarkets. On top of all of that, they can also help to raise vital funds for their PTA or school too.

Want to know more? Make sure you speak to us today.

With Halloween officially over, it means you-know-what is just around the corner.

To celebrate the countdown to Christmas, My Garment Factory Cardiff has designed some seasonal garments for you to purchase, all of which are available in a selection of colours and sizes. We’ve got all the Christmas classics lined up, including Rudolph silhouette printed t-shirts and mistletoe aprons:

Take a look at the full selection here. All of our garments are custom printed by our professional and knowledgeable team, and quality checked each and every time to ensure that you receive the very best. With over 25 years’ experience in the printing and embroidery industry, you can trust My Garment Factory to deliver in both quality and price.

There will be more festive products coming soon to the store, so make sure you keep your eyes peeled. However, if you have a specific design in mind that you’d like to see come to life, why not speak to us today and let us create something unique, custom-printed or embroidered, just for you. You can share your ideas on our Facebook page, talk to us on Twitter, or email us here. Alternatively, if you’d rather hear someone’s voice and not stare at a computer screen, you could phone us too! We’re looking forward to seeing your great designs.