May 27, 2011
In January, Newsweek released a list of dying cities with Grand Rapids at spot #10. It ruffled a few feathers. In response, Grand Rapids gathered 5,000 citizens and put on a world record-breaking video to the tune of Don McLean's "American Pie". It was shot a few days ago downtown and was filmed using one single shot.
Newsweek responded today, citing its support of GR and deflecting responsibility:
"To the Grand Rapids crowd:
First off, we LOVE your YouTube LipDub. We're big fans, and are inspired by your love of the city you call home.
But so you know what was up with the list you're responding to, we want you to know it was done by a website called mainstreet.com--not by Newsweek (it was unfortunately picked up on the Newsweek web site as part of a content sharing deal)--and it uses a methodology that our current editorial team doesn't endorse and wouldn't have employed. It certainly doesn't reflect our view of Grand Rapids."
We personally didn't take offense, since we work out of Grand Rapids and fully know that this isn't a dying city. But it is nice to see the community band together against bad publicity. We even got a little exposure... Notice the Mitten and Love Michigan shirts @2:45min? :^)
The Mitten State
May 25, 2011
It was 5 years ago that a few of us decided to start up a t-shirt company. We didn't really know what we were doing. Frankly, we didn't really know how to design, either. But progress comes to those willing to put in the hard work and persistence, right? Out of about 10 original designs (on a website that no longer exists), we came up with one gem: the Grand Rapids Boxes t-shirt. That shirt would become the genesis for The Mitten State.
In 2008, plans for a TMS website started taking shape, a proposition complicated by 3 business partners in 3 different states. It launched in 2009, with designs dedicated to our home state. We had but two shirts: the Grand Rapids Boxes (original unisex version) and the Grand Rapids Hand (original unisex version). You could get them in any color, as long as it was blue.
Eventually, we added more cities: Ann Arbor, Detroit, and East Lansing. And things were good. As our brand developed, and we honed our design skills and tastes, we moved away from our 2 original designs, leading to the current line up you see here.
And so it is with great pleasure that we re-introduce some of our original vintage Michigan t-shirts, straight outta the TMS archives. We're only selling what's left, so snag one at half price while we have them in stock. You can find them here: TMS Originals.
The Mitten State
May 22, 2011
It wasn't very long ago that we quit our jobs and set out to start a company that would celebrate the best of Michigan and its people. We believe that the Mitten State speaks to us all in a unique way and means something a little different to everyone, but unifies us nonetheless by way of our communities, citizens, and places. Where else can you use your hand as a map and not get strange looks? (We tried out West. It only served to confuse people and make us miss home).
So on this sunny day in late May, we'd like to take a moment and list a few of the reasons why this state is so great:
- There are more 5 star rated golf courses in Michigan than in any other state in the USA. [Golf Michigan]
- Michigan ranks #6 in number of breweries and #16 in breweries per capita. [Drink Local]
- We have over 3,200 miles of shoreline, more than any other state except Alaska. [Love Lake Michigan]
- Standing anywhere in Michigan, you're never more than 85 miles away from a body of water.
- 11,500 lakes. Need we say more?
- Despite its current stuggles, Mo-Town remains one of the most iconic and well-known cities in the world. [Motor City]
The Mitten State