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Dogs Of Threadless: Bruce

by betsym / creative /

We’re back with another installment of Dogs of Threadless. Meet Bruce, who works hard every day beside User Experience Director Brock. His birthday is coming up, so make sure to throw him a bone!

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Name, Age, Breed Bruce, 4 years old (on August 15). Boston Terrier.

What department do you work in? Snacks and Naps.

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What do you like most about Threadless? Visits from the Starfruit Kefir truck! Oh, and getting to hang out with fun people all day.

What is your proudest accomplishment? I've trained Brock to give me snacks just for doing stuff like sitting, laying down, or going in a circle.

What hobbies or tricks do you have? My true passion is the pursuit of snacks, but I've been known to hop on a skateboard, take an agility class, or head to the beach.

What was your life like before Threadless? When I was little the great people of the Midwest Boston Terrier Rescue looked after me, and I lived with a nice lady in Michigan until I found my forever home with Brock in Chicago.

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Join Us At Weapons Of Mass Creation Fest!

by migreyes / creative /

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1 weekend in Cleveland, Ohio. 20 speakers. 20 designers. 20 bands.

And we're one of them. I'm headed to the Weapons of Mass Creation Fest this summer to speak about making stuff and screwing up. Joining me are some of my pals and heros: Aaron Draplin, Mikey Burton, Quite Strong, Jessi Arrington and Joseph Hughes -- among many more! The best part? We want you to be there right with us.

We're giving away a pair of tickets to the festival, and all ya gots to do is tweet about it.

image Hey @Threadless, I want to join the fun at @wmcfest with you! http://bit.ly/threadwmc

We'll randomly pick a winner this Friday.

WMC Fest isn't the only place we'll be this year. You may or may not find us at the HOW Design Conference and perhaps even Pivot: AIGA National Conference. 2011. Party time, excellent.

The Art Dept. Is Speaking At Columbia

by migreyes / creative /

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Designing For a Million+ of Your Friends

Whoa, we're speaking! Spend an evening with us crazy, kooky folk in The Art Dept. as we take you behind the scenes of our in-house creative department. You'll hear stories about creating for community, screwing up and staying scrappy. And since the theme is all about designing for (and with!) friends, you can expect some video cameos from our cronies at Facebook, Vimeo and a few other pals chiming in on the topic. (And no, there's no need to wear your favorite Threadless tee to the lecture.)

So if you're in the Chicago area this coming Tuesday, come on out to Columbia College and let's make a night of it.


Tuesday, April 12 6:30pm - 8:00pm

Facebook Event Info Here


Columbia College Hokin Hall (109 in the 623 building) 623 S. Wabash Ave. Chicago, IL 60605

Make Us Your Best Threadless Search Story

by migreyes / creative /

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Together, Google and YouTube created a fun tool called Search Stories. Perhaps you've seen this in action during the Super Bowl last year?

Well, now you can create your own, and we'd like to see what you come up with. Your challenge:

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Create a Google Search Story about Threadless.

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Contest over! Congrats to these three winners!

01.) A Designer's Dream by rhythmdev9. 02.) This literally happened by the lol-inducing SuperRyan 03.) Changing My Ways but the hopefully not-naked Braniel.

Honorable mention to jess4002 and her making friends Search Story, and alvarejo for showing us how he spends his cash.

This was fun. Hilarious stuff, everyone!

Designing The Mobile Site

by glenncochon / creative /

Last summer, Mig and I decided that we wanted to get the ball rolling on a Threadless mobile site for our Awesome Time project. Like you guys, we felt like this was something way past due. So whenever we had free time, we dished out early comps of what the site could look like and how it could work.

Since a mobile site can't have all the goods of the full site, I had to focus on the core basic functions to be optimized for the small screen. With the help of Brock's user experience expertise, we narrowed down the site to 3 sections - shop, score, and blog.

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Over time, I spit out more designs, listened to suggestions, shopped around other mobile sites, and made lots of red markings on paper.

I played around with type treatments and graphics.

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I also had learn how to design for swiping thumbs and fat fingers.

Here's a quick evolution of the tab structure and filtering system.

Some screens of the final product.

Luckily, we got our friends Mobify to do our dirty work and within weeks the site was up and running.

We know you can't do everything you want on the mobile site yet, but we're hoping over time we can add more features. Like slogan submitting and scoring, which we just added. In the meantime you can always click the "full site" in the footer to go back to the old way.

Keep on the lookout for more mobile fun in the coming months!

The Update To Slogan Submission + Voting Is Here!

by brockrumer / creative /

You may remember the post I wrote a while back about changes we wanted to make to the slogans submission + voting process. The priority and order of some things has changed a little since that post, and some things will happen in stages, so let me update you.

Today you'll see these changes:

Limited submissions To start you'll only be able to submit 1 slogan per 24 hours to focus the process on crafted slogans, and even if the random junk submitters continue their impact will be minimized. This means you'll need to decide between variations before submitting, but that means votes can be concentrated on one version rather than spread across several.

Better instructions The submission form has been spruced up and we've added some tips in-line that we hope will make things clearer and help improve the quality of the slogan pool. (I hope you like it, b/c I think it looks great.)

Voting time frame Slogans will be up for scoring for 7 days, just like design subs. Since nearly everything already submitted is older than 7 days, they will no longer be available for scoring. (But they aren't lost forever... stick with me, more about that below.)

Flagging We're adding the ability to flag slogans which you've probably seen on other sites. At first we'll be using a threshold approach - once something gets flagged a certain number of times, it won't be shown until we review it - but we'll tweak that as we need to.

One last big change is still to come:

----> We will let you know when this happens. <----

Archived slogans All the old slogans will be archived and AFTER that happens you will have the opportunity to resubmit slogans you think are swell. (that means NOT NOW)

This is one of the best changes for those of you reading this blog. Right now even if a great slogan exists in the pool it's buried and it's not likely to surface, so there is little chance of it getting printed. However, if you choose to resubmit your old gems can get the spotlight they deserve. You'll have to use up your 1-per-day but if it's a winner that didn't get noticed it's worth it, right?

What if someone submits one of my slogans? With fewer slogans being submitted, you'll probably see it. Just flag it. But, it's not all on you. We'll still be doing the checks we do now against the database to make sure the right submitter is rewarded for a picked slogan.

And here's what's happening with a few other things mentioned in that first blog:

Profile Updates Great things are in store for the profile overall this year, but you may see a few small updates soon to reflect the archiving, the voting window, etc.

Smart sorting Even tho I like to nerd out over the idea of momentum-based sorting, it's overkill until we see how many slogans are submitted, and how many are up for voting at any one time.

Twittering @threadslogans We're still interested in using this and other ways to promote slogans, but that will come after we have the core process up to speed.

Most important of all, these changes are a part of a renewed commitment to printing TypeTees.

We're working on making the internal process of getting them designed more efficient. And you'll be seeing TypeTees released on a regular basis. I hope one of those is yours!

Have at it below, but keep in mind that these things will evolve over time. Is 1 the right number per day? Is 7 days the right voting window? Do we need more details when something is flagged? None of those are set in stone, but we want to change them based on what actually happens. So we will start here, see how it goes, adjust, and repeat.

Exposing Scores On The Submission Pages

by skaw / creative /

As a lot of you noticed, yesterday we experimented with publicly displaying the current score a design is getting while it is still in the running. Part of the reason for that is to give designers more info about their design so they can act on it, be it finding ways to promote their design more or otherwise.

But the bigger issue here is that since about 2007, the number of people voting has been dropping pretty hard. Last year, we had significantly less votes registered when compared to 2007. Those votes are so important to our decisions in picking designs for print and we really need more people voting.

Separately, we feel like the last couple years the work we've been doing at Threadless has been mostly focused on sales, promotions and otherwise things related to the "Shop" section of the site. This year we are refocusing on the community and participate side of Threadless. There is a ton of exciting stuff happening in the community that goes unnoticed... and it's more valuable to the health of the company and the community for people to come in and start scoring designs than it is for someone to come and buy a t-shirt.

Right now when a design is submitted, it goes into this black hole where Threadless can't really talk about it... But by exposing scores publicly, it's the first step in give us the freedom to showcase the cool stuff that's happening in the community. So rather than just us talking about printed t-shirts for sale or a promotion we're running, we can talk about artists and their submissions, get people in there voting, show leader boards of currently top scoring designs, promote designs in the running to people that are just shopping on Threadless right now, etc.

That all said, right now I'm leaning towards a system where the average score becomes exposed after you've scored the design... kinda like how most poll systems work. So the score is still public in a way but it won't influence your own score. You could always go back and change your score but I don't think that will have nearly as large of an effect as exposing it up front would.

We'd love to hear any of your thoughts on how we can increase scoring numbers on designs and also how to make the cool stuff happening in the community more front and center to Threadless.

365 Days Of Awesome!

by cshimala / creative /

Day 365: 365 Days of Awesome!

First, just want to say thanks to everyone that checked out this account and followed along the entire 365 days. It was a fun ride.

I thought long and hard of a way to end this with a big bang. I had a few solid ideas but in the end I thought ending it simple was the way to go. After all, this is not the end of this account. It won't continue on as a daily post for 365 days but more of a behind the scenes account as things happen naturally. With this new format there could be multiple posts on a day or none at all. It all depends on the content. Speaking of content, we would love to get community contributions. If you have something you'd love to share drop us an email, send us flickr mail or if we stumble upon something we adore from you we'll be in touch.

Also, of note. When I was looking back at everything last night I noticed I missed a day! If you can find it in the photostream there's $25 gift code in it for you.

Shimala

Stock, Stock, Goose!

by brockrumer / creative /

In addition to our big changes to the shopping section, we’re making one small change and removing the Stock Chart from the nav.

You probably have one these reactions, so continue Choose-Your-Own-Adventure-style:

What’s Stock Chart? Yeah, that’s pretty much the point - it wasn’t being used much. (If you like stats: only 0.3% of visits in the past month included /stockchart) But to answer your question, Stock Chart was designed to let you to see all in-stock designs by size and the relative quantities available. At this point Stock Chart is starting to show it’s age, and now you can do most of that (and more) in the catalog, and it more sense to focus our efforts there.

But I love/need Stock Chart!? That’s cool. The page isn’t going away. You’ll still be able to get to the page at threadless.com/stockchart directly, just not through the nav. Think of it as our special secret stock club. Oooh, maybe members could get a fez! Tho I guess that’s not exactly a secret hat. We’ll have to figure out the hats, but in the mean time Keep Calm and Carry On!

Your Guess Is As Good As Mine, But Not As Good As Ours.

by brockrumer / creative /

Have you read The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki? I haven't either, but I know enough about it to inspire this little experiment:

One of Surowiecki's examples is the old "how many jellybeans?" guessing game. He claims that the average of all the guesses will probably be closer than any of the individual guesses.

Unfortunately I'm fresh out of jellybeans, but as you know the Black Hole Friday sale is this weekend, so I thought we'd use that for some data.

Here's the question: What do you think the maximum number of visitors at one time on Threadless.com will be over the weekend?

Cast your guess in a comment below. I'll find a prize for the person who comes closest, and a bigger prize if someone nails it. All entries must be in by 12:01am Friday.

Threadkins: A Pumpkin Carving Contest!

by cshimala / creative /

Fancy yourself a fancy pumpkin carver? Then this contest is for YOU!

Browse through our archive of designs and turn your favorite into a pumpkin carving! You can even paint on a pumpkin as well. Also, your carving can be exact or loosely based on a design.

Once complete, snap a photo and submit it over on our Facebook contest page.

You are only able to submit once to the contest page so if you plan on creating more than one pumpkin you can post it up here and it will still be considered for the contest.

Contest Ends - October 31, 2010 @ 11:59:59 pm (CDT) The Threadless Staff will vote on all submissions Nov 1 – Nov 3 Winners Announced Nov 4th!

Grand Prize - $250 Gift Certificate to Threadless.com - Brain melting Threadless art panel (48″ × 36″) - Killer electric pumpkin carver - Super sharp carving kit - Retina burning pumpkin light

2nd Prize - $100 Gift Certificate to Threadless.com

3rd Prize - $50 Gift Certificate to Threadless.com

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Slogan's Heroes

by brockrumer / creative /

We love slogans, and we're committed to printing them. And you might have noticed that back in the spring, we brought TypeTees site back into Threadless.com to make sure everyone gets to see them.

Other people must love slogans too because slogan submissions have really exploded. We've received almost 2.25 MILLION slogan submissions since we started - 850,000 in 2009 alone!

There are some gems in there, but there are a lot of variations, duplications, and stuff that wouldn't get printed for one reason or another. That makes voting a chore and hard to get enough votes to be meaningful (the average number of votes per submission on Threadless is around 225 but the average on slogans is only 17).

Getting a slogan printed is almost as good as seeing your name up in lights. And we've heard your frustrations with the current process. After mashing that up with the ideas we've had around the office, we've started working on changes to the slogan process to simplify things, increase voting and exposure, and ultimately get more slogans printed.

So here's what we've got cookin'.

First up, we'll do this stuff:

Limit submissions You'll only be able to submit 1 slogan per 24 hours. Yeah, it's drastic, but that's the point. We want you to only send your very best from that day. And that way, scoring is focused on the slogans people are really behind.

Have better instructions There isn't a hard and fast checklist for what will or won't get printed but there are some general things to avoid. Odds are if you are reading this blog, you know these, but we'll give some quick tips on the submission form.

Show trending We're going to incorporate some of the way Twitter tees worked and use viewing/scoring in addition to submission time to sort the list of slogans available for voting. This will allow the really good slogans to rise to the top and it will also prevent vote stuffing by getting more eyes on the ones that are getting a lot of votes.

After that, we'll do a second round:

Tweet @threadslogans Submissions will be automatically tweeted to a slogan-specific address. (We're still deciding whether that will be all slogans or ones that have reached a certain threshold - say 10 "I'd wear it" votes.) Every day we'll also tweet the highest scoring design and then @Threadless will retweet.

Create a timeframe for voting Slogans will be up for scoring for 7 days, just like design subs.

Have profile updates We're going to tweak the slogans tab to improve the presentation of your slogan contributions.

We're still talking about exactly when these changes will happen, but we'll keep you updated. We want everyone to help us make sloganeering better. So once we do these things, we'll be able to test things like how many subs you can make, lengthen the scoring period, etc. based on your feedback.

Select - What Would Y'All Like To See?

by arzie13 / creative /

So, y'all have seen and soaked up the feel of the new Select line. There is definitely a specific aesthetic to this first batch. The second batch will have a fairly similar feel, but this doesn't mean they will always look and feel like this. The designs and styles in this line will always be evolving.

What do y'all think? What sort of designs do y'all think should be select-ed (new and reprints alike)? What sort of styles of garments would y'all like to see more of? (ie crewneck sweatshirts, YES!)

Woo Hoo!