What makes a T-shirt iconic? Is it the design? The brand recognition it inspires? The culture it defines? Maybe it’s all of the above.
During a highly anticipated Facebook livestream, sponsored by Bel Promo, Joe "The Joe Show" Haley and "Facebook" Vinnie Driscoll attempted to answer those questions by presenting what they believe are the Top 10 Most Iconic T-Shirts of All Time. Watch the livestream here. And if you agree or disagree with them, or think they missed one, jump into the Facebook comments area now and let 'em know. For the complete list, scroll below.
Top 10 Most Iconic T-Shirts of All Time
Adidas – As a child of the ‘80s, my friends and I all wore Adidas T-shirts for no other reason than the logo looked cool. And I never even owned a pair of their sneakers! That’s a branding win in my book.
Tie Dye – No T-shirt defines a culture more than this one. Popular with eco-evangelists, hippies and followers of the band The Grateful Dead, tie-dyes have come to signify oneness with the Earth … or something like that. Like, peace, man.
Hard Rock Café – What sets this T-shirt apart from other restaurant and bar merch is the name of the city under the famous logo, making it a bona fide collector’s item. For people who love to collect stuff and travel, this is a must-have.
College – Worn famously in the movie ‘Animal House’ by the late actor John Belushi, this T-shirt perfectly encapsulates that college slacker vibe. Though the movie is nearly 40 years old, the simple white-on-black screen-print is still very popular today on college campuses.
Concert Tees – What’s cooler than rock ‘n’ roll? Probably nothing, but rock concert T-shirts are pretty damn cool. Bands like The Rolling Stones, The Who, KISS and AC/DC are all famous for not only their music, but their magnificent concert merch as well.
New York City – This iconic T-shirt favored by John Lennon is as striking as it is simple. The classic lettering on a plain white ringer T-shirt is beautifully understated, although Lennon did cut the sleeves off.
Vote for Pedro – Two things represent the movie Napoleon Dynamite perfectly: the dirt-brown suit (check out mine, circa 1976) and this T-shirt. Another great ringer tee with lettering that’s reminiscent of those create-your-own-shirt shops of the '70s/'80s. You can just feel the felt-y goodness
I (heart) NY – Part of an ad campaign in the late '70s to promote tourism in New York State, this T-shirt is the personification of a campaign that included a jingle and TV commercials. When you see the shirt, you just hear the song.
Harley Davidson – Ain’t nothing more Americana than Harley Davidson motorcycles, and the T-shirts adorned with that logo, that scream America with all the red, white and blue. It also represents road warriors, whether they’re bike enthusiast or long-haulers.
Mickey Mouse – I got my first Mickey Mouse T-shirt in 1979. It’s the one thing I, and millions of other people, wanted during that first trip to Disney World. No words (doesn’t need them), this tee (another ringer!) is so recognizable and loved that once it becomes a rag, you’re jonesing for another.