About the Mustard colored Strong Athletic Human Tee-Shirts by LGBTQ+ Inclusive Brand Strong Athletic
There are so many labels in the world, and out t-shirt company Strong Athletic certainly uses our fair share. The original intention of our company was to make sure that if people were going to label us, it was in a way that we preferred. If you don't know the origin story of Strong Athletic, we'll give you the quick version. In 2012 and 2013, our founder Nadia Kean starting using the phrase "a fine group of strong, athletic women" to describe her teammates. She was using this phrase because she was annoyed by the fact that so many people, especially cis men, were referring to her teammates and herself as "girls."
Nadia's teammate Cristen Perks was experimenting with graphic design in and screen printing at the time and created the Strong Athletic Woman shirt in 2013 as a Christmas gift for Nadia. Nadia felt an immediate attachment to the concept of putting the powerful words "strong, athletic, woman" on her chest and she wanted to create the opportunity for others to do the same, and thus the first Strong Athletic Woman shirt was created.
Many, many people found the shirt to be empowering, but because there was no alternative to the shirt- no way to be included in the statement if you didn't identify as a woman, others found the shirt to be exclusionary. Although Nadia wanted to make a statement about being a strong, athletic woman, she didn't want to do so at the expense of people who didn't identify that way. The obvious solution to this problem was to create additional shirts for people to show their pride in their personal strength and athleticism, yet not have to do so through a binary word. The first nonbinary words that we added to our line were skater and queer in 2014. The word "human" is extremely inclusive and so it was added to our line in 2017 and we've never looked back.
Are you looking for a queer and woman-owned and operated company that is within sports and athletics? Are you looking for a company that isn't so much concerned with your performance as we are with your perception knowing that you belong? Are you looking for a company that believes that all humans should have fair and equal access to playing and competing in sports? Strong Athletic is that company and we're proud to be part of the growing list of companies that want to make sure that sports stays open to everyone.
Our hope is that when you wear our shirts you feel pride and confidence. We want you to look in the mirror and feel motivated by the words you see on your chest. When you walk down the street, we want others to be motivated by seeing you in your Strong Athletic Human shirt. We want the words to speak to them. We want the words to remind them that they too are strong and athletic.
We hear so many things about our shirts. For the people that don't wear them, the main thing that we hear is that the shirt feels too bold to wear. The word "athletic" is so specific. So many people have been raised to believe that only certain people should be able to use the word "athletic" and "athlete". We are a company that started within a sport, the sport of roller derby and rowing, and we will stay true to our roots of being a company that is within sports and athleticism. We're a company that is pro-athlete, but we are also pro-human. We will always put a human's experience before medals and competition. We think that sports should be human first, and everything else second.
Why are you drawn to this shirt? Why do you wear it? Why wouldn't you wear it? When you see another person wearing it, does it inspire you or make you want to shrink into yourself because you think you're not worthy? We know that not every t-shirt company goes this deep. We know that sometimes a t-shirt is just a simple t-shirt. But Strong Athletic decided a long time ago that we're not just in the t-shirt industry to do what everyone else is doing. We're here to support people who want to make statements. We're here to amplify the voices of athletes who are proud of who they are and proud of who they will continue to grow to be. Do you have a story about how you became the athlete that you are? We always want to hear from people and hear your why. Please write to us at hello (@) strongathletic.com.
If you buy this shirt and post while wearing it on social media, please tag us! #strongathletic #strongathletichuman #stronghuman @strongathletic
About the Shirts that Strong Athletic uses for their Strong Athletic Human Design
We have three different styles of shirts with the Strong Athletic Human design. All of the shirts were printed at a small scale shop somewhere in the United States. Most were printed by Amanda who prints out of Austin Screen Printer's Coop in Austin, Texas. Amanda is a teacher, and artist and when she's not working on her art she's playing with her cats. The design of this shirt is based on the original Strong Athletic Woman design produced by Cristen Perks as a gift for Nadia Kean. Cristen was gracious enough to all Nadia to carry on her design in the form of a t-shirt company, and for that we will always be grateful. Our logo, the Strong Athletic woman who is stamped inside of a circle, was created by Angel Ortega, owner of Garzig design. Angel is an artist and much of her art also makes a powerful statement. Angel says, "The work and art of Garzig Design is heavily influenced by metal music, her Mexican heritage, and love to redesign pop culture with a low brow chic." When Angel is not creating art she can be found playing with her chihuahuas in South Austin, Texas.
The Bella Canvas Crop Top Racerback Tank
The Bella Canvas Crop Top Racerback, style number 6682, is by far one of the most popular "cuts" or styles of shirts we've ever carried. Although not everyone is a fan of crop tops, what we know is... "Once you Crop, You Can't Stop!" This crop top is a bit "flowy" in design and it actually gets longer as the sizes change. For sizes Small, Medium and Large the length is more like a traditional crop. For sizes X-Large and 2X-Large the length is longer- more like a regular tank top. The armholes of this tank are made to look as if you cut them yourself with a pair of scissors and the hem of the armholes are not stitched, adding to the look. The armholes are slightly on the "dropped" side. If you don't know what that means for a tank to have "dropped armholes" or "drop arm holes" it simply means that the armholes are larger than the average tank, making it so if you're wearing a garment underneath- say a sports bra, a regular bra or a binder, there's a good likelihood that some of the fabric will be visible. For many people this is why they like the tank so much. The racerback cut means that the fabric on the back of the tank top cuts in toward the shoulder blades making more of an "x" on the back back, reviling a bit more of your back than a traditional tank top would. The color of this crop is the traditional heather mustard color and the words are printed with black ink.
The Bella Canvas Crew Neck T-shirt
The Bella Canvas Crew Neck T-shirt, style number 3001CVC, is 100% your classic tee. This shirt is designed to hang "straight down" meaning it doesn't billow and it is not "flowy". The length of the sleeves is very average when compared to other t-shirts- they are not capped sleeved and they do end above the elbow, about mid-upper arm. The length of this t-shirt is also average, with the hem coming down to the mid-upper thigh. The neck line is a traditional "crew neck" which means that it has a circular neck line and no collar. Crew necks are very common on most t-shirts. These t-shirts are preshrunk. This shirt was assembled at a WRAP facility. The color of this t-shirt is the traditional heather mustard color and the words are printed with black ink.
The StarTee Long Sleeve Crop Top T-shirt
The Star Tee Long Sleeve Crop Top Tee Shirt, style number ST1170, is not your average longsleeve. The hem of the shirt is cut to make it look as if you've cropped it by cutting it with scissors yourself. Rather than having stitching, the hem roles to a stop. The sleeves are full length and come down to your wrists with traditional cuffs. The neck line is a traditional crew neck, giving the shirt a classic look. This shirt is great to wear solo or to layer it on top of another shirt if you're not in to showing off your lower stomach, but you love everything else about the style and fit of this shirt. This shirt was assembled at a WRAP facility. The color of this crop is the traditional heather mustard color and the words are printed with black ink.
About the Strong Athletic Supply Chain, our Product Process and our Packaging
We know that there are a few companies that make awesome shirts with great slogans and sayings across the front. One thing we notice is that our shirts are usually about $5-$10 more expensive than the other shirts on the market. Ever wonder why there is such a price difference? There's a good chance that some of those companies are simply producing more shirts, faster, and so their overhead costs are lower. We can't speak for them and how they set their prices, but we can speak for ourselves. At Strong Athletic, we only use small-scale screen printers and the garments that we print on are always made in either W.A.R.P. Certified facilities or other facilities that meet CPSIA standards. We also pay all of our contract employees a pay rate that is in line with living wage standards. The majority of our shirts are associated with a non-profit and we donate a portion of profits (sometimes 100% of profits) to causes that hold dear. We believe that when products are cheap, someone is losing out on income. We don't want those people to be anyone involved in our supply chain or who work for Strong Athletic on a daily basis.
Every single Strong Athletic product is produced by a small scale screen printer or embroidery shop. Our snapback hats are embroidered by a small-scale, local embroidery shop called Vistago Print in Lago Vista Texas. The majority of our shirts are printed by Amanda in Austin, Texas who prints out of the Austin Screen Printer's Coop, a screen printing shop that is member owned and run in East Austin. When our shirts are not printed by Amanda they are printed by other small-scale screen printers such as Second Avenues Ink in Portland, Oregon or Leigh Valley Apparel Creations in Pennsylvania. The art for this design is based on the original artwork created by Cristen Perks in 2013 for Strong Athletic founder Nadia Kean. The Strong Athletic logo was created by Angel Ortega in 2015, until that point our shirts had the Get Smarty Coaching logo on them.
Every Strong Athletic Shirt comes wrapped in our signature "You are so Strong" wraps which are held together with a kraft Strong Athletic sticker. Each shirt is then packaged in a biodegradable kraft mailer that we get from a US based company called EcoEnclose. We include a postcard that shares the origin story of Strong Athletic and that is addressed by hand to the person receiving the shirt. Also included in every package is a Strong Athletic logo sticker and one of our "We Believe" stickers. Every time you open a package from Strong Athletic we want it to feel special, especially if you're sending the Strong Athletic shirt as a gift.
People either buy Strong Athletic for theirselves or for their friends. Because our shirts, hats and fanny packs are so often sent to people as gifts, we decided that we wanted to make the experience of opening a Strong Athletic package feel like you're opening a gift. When your package from Strong Athletic arrives, you'll immediately notice that the kraft mailer is biodegradable and that it's covered in our removable signature "We Believe" sticker. Opening the package you will find your shirt, wrapped in a "You are so Strong" wrapper. In addition to whatever you purchased you'll also find a few of our signature logo stickers and a smaller "We Believe" sticker, plus a postcard with the origin story of our company hand written to the recipient of the package. If you're sending this as a gift to a friend, you can have us include a hand-written message and we'll sign your name for you. Just write out what you want written on the notes in the comment section of the cart.
We created our packaging so that every time a package shows up from Strong Athletic it feels like a gift is arriving in the mail. Our Kraft mailers are made in the USA and are 100% biodegradable and recyclable. Our signature “We Believe” art is printed on the outside of each mailer, so that when the person who is receiving the package opens it, they know just by reading the words on the envelope that they’re are receiving something special from a company that not only believes in sustainability, but also in humans in sports. We hope that you enjoy your package when it arrives.