[walks on stage]
[takes sip of water]
That’s right, friends…after nearly 4 years in hibernation, your favorite t-shirt brand slash-pretend union of internet workers is once again open for business (this time on its sister site, Cotton Bureau). We’ll give you a second to collect yourselves.
Alright, so the big question: why did we bring UP back? Well, when we took it offline at the end of 2014, the first question everyone—and we mean everyone—asked was: can’t you just keep it going on Cotton Bureau? Our answer at the time was always the same: no…at least not the way UP deserved. CB just wasn’t mature enough yet as an e-commerce platform to handle the complexity of UP. Time has passed, however, and things have changed. CB has grown up a lot since 2014, and frankly, we need an in-house brand that can show off everything CB does nowadays. A brand that can support everything from tees to hats to pins to coffee mugs. A brand with campaign, in-stock, and print-on-demand products. A brand that people genuinely love, and can generate enough traffic to stress the system from time to time. If only we had a beloved brand sitting on the shelf that fit that description…
But most importantly, we just missed it. We missed the community. We missed designing products for ourselves. We missed that killer Aaron Draplin-designed logo. UP is what put us on the proverbial map, and has been more responsible for our success than any other single thing we’ve ever done as a company since 2009. We knew we couldn’t allow it to stay dormant forever. A few months ago, we quietly started asking around, seeing if anyone still cared, gauging interest in a UP reboot, and we were honestly surprised at the enthusiasm of the response. So we decided it was time.
Say hello to United Pixelworkers 5.0. Let us show you around.
We’ve had a lot of time to think about how to make UP better since 2014, and we kept coming back to one thing: opening the doors to this amazing design and development community, and inviting in those less fortunate or privileged than us. So here’s what we’re gonna do: every quarter, with your help, we will select a deserving charity or non-profit to benefit. For each t-shirt, pin, notebook, or other item that you purchase, 10% of our gross revenue will go to an industry-related organization in need. The first round of donations will include all sales through the end of 2018. We have some solid ideas of where to direct the money, but let us know on Twitter what you think. We’ll be making the final selection in the next few weeks.
Local shirts are always on.
Local t-shirts have always been the bedrock of UP, but in the past we struggled to keep them in stock. No more. All 69 local tees are now available as print-on-demand. Whether you’re from New York or Newfoundland, Austin or Boston, the Triangle or the Moon, you can now rock your local UP tee. And for the first time ever, you can snag your city on a tank top or hoodie as well. If your city/country/region is not represented yet, circle the wagons and yell at us on Twitter (Oakland, CA and Columbus, OH have already made strong cases for their inclusion).
Notebooks + Pins!
We’re all a little older than the last time UP was a thing, which means our memories aren’t as sharp as they used to be, which means you’d better start writing stuff down. The brand new UP Standard Issue Pocket Notebook is a fine place to do just that. 3.5″ wide x 5″ tall and conveniently double-sided so you can flip it over and use it the other way too. 32 pages of dot gridness to handle all your business. Made in Portland, OR from 100% recycled materials by our friends at Scout Books.
Soft enamel pins sure are all the rage now…so we made our own. Put it on your laptop bag. Wear it on your lapel during your next campaign for office. Jam it into your enemy’s chest and tell ’em “compliments of United Pixelworkers.” One imperial inch wide with a deluxe locking clutch (because we don’t want you to lose this thing).
Classic logo tees.
Our old favorite UP logo tees are dang near threadbare at this point, so it’s time for some new ones. Available for the next two weeks only: the classic Standard Issue and Standard Issue Blackout designs, printed on a whole mess of colors, styles (hoodies!), and fabrics, so there’s no excuse to miss out. Speaking of product options…
United Pixelworkers on Blank.
From the very beginning, UP tees were available in both men’s and women’s sizes. Unfortunately, as we learned very quickly, “women’s” sizes are really “junior’s” sizes. After years of looking for a solution, we gave up and made our own tees from scratch. If you somehow missed out on last year’s announcement, Kickstarter, and launch of Blank by Cotton Bureau, let us be the first to tell you how amazing these shirts are. They’re made in America (the fabric is milled, dyed, cut, and sewn in Los Angeles), size inclusive (XS–5X for women’s and men’s cuts), and true-to-size (real sizes for anyone buying a women’s size, and a little more forgiving than other premium brands for anyone buying men’s sizes). Blank is a premium option on all campaign tees; local tees (and anything else available via print on demand) should be available on Blank later this year.
Thank you so much for supporting everything we’ve done, whether you’ve been paying your dues since the beginning back in 2010, or whether you’re just now joining the union. We hope this is just the beginning of the rebirth of United Pixelworkers, but that’s up to you. We have endless ideas for new products. If you keep showing up, we’ll keep cranking them out. We promise.