These days, T-shirts are big business. From high end to low, there’s a t-shirt sold for every mood, budget, and occasion. But it wasn’t always that way. For the founders of the North Carolina-based brand, My Pride Apparel, the selection of pro-Black tees available was too limited — so, they decided to start a brand that sold the kind of tees they would want to wear.
Today, My Pride Apparel has grown into a full e-commerce destination, selling tees, hoodies, hats, mugs, and more. If you use social media and you’re Black, you’ve probably seen one of their designs. Best-sellers bear phrases like, ‘Michelle Is Still My First Lady’, ‘Young Black and Determined’, and ‘Protect Black Women At All Costs’.
Black celebrities have also been seen rocking their products. My Pride Apparel’s ‘Shades of Us’ sweatshirt was worn by actress Yara Shahidi on an episode of Grown-ish, Eboni K. Williams donned the ‘I’m Black Mixed With Black’ sweatshirt on The Breakfast Club, and Grammy nominated artist Jidenna famously wore their ‘Protect Black Women At All Costs’ hoodie to an NBA game where he was honored.
My Pride Apparel maintains its reputation for relatable, wearable phrases by getting a lot of their shirt ideas from customer suggestions. Once a phrase is selected, the brand then contracts with Black graphic designers to create the design. The brand keeps the designs fresh by using different designers each time, allowing them to create a broad range of unique products.
This past summer, the brand saw an uptick in sales as Black people across the country took part in protests against inequality and police violence. In turn, My Pride Apparel made contributions to the George Floyd and Breonna Taylor memorial funds, with plans to make many more contributions to organizations that are committed to Black lives.
According to their customers, My Pride Apparel’s designs are not only visually appealing, they are also great conversation starters. Customers say that the ‘Protect Black Women At All Costs’ shirt sparks a lot of questions from non-Black people.
“Shoutout to Black Women just because you saved our nation!” one testimonial about the ‘Shoutout to Black Women … just because’ shirt reads. “I love this tee, it’s so empowering. It’s about time the black women received their flowers in hand.”
Shop My Pride Apparel here.