nighsparrow


quality posts: 0 Private Messages nighsparrow

Add me to the list of folks who are disappointed by the switch to non-American made shirts. It's tough enough to find clothes that are made in America, and I appreciated that I could count on Woot to give us a product that helped bolster American jobs. That change will make me think twice about buying shirts here, especially when I am looking for gifts with that label that says "Made in the USA."

dolemite007


quality posts: 0 Private Messages dolemite007
amcatanzaro wrote:And, holy crap, mods need to stop the commenting. They aren't making this any better. Answer intelligently and informatively. Don't snark.

Agreed. Although they're not saying much of anything at the moment...most likely because they can't (or aren't allowed to by Amazon) counter anything that we're saying with anything but an annoying snarky comment. But snarky comments are great, because everyone knows that pissing off your user base that way is a fantastic way to conduct business instead of being straightforward and honest.

kipin


quality posts: 1 Private Messages kipin

I just sent this email to all of my friends who I know have ordered shirts from woot in the past based solely on my recommendation of the site:

Just a heads up since I know you guys have ordered shirts before but woot! is switching their t-shirt supplier to Anvil. They say the quality is the same but the shirts are 3/8" shorter in size.

Not that I really have a problem with this fact since I'm a super economist and all (free trade woo!) but the new shirts are also not made in the USA. Oh and they raised the price to $12 last month before the switch to the new (cheaper) brand.

Just figured some of you might want to know so you're not surprised on your next shirt order.

Forward to whomever you please.

Cheers



I think other active community members should send similar messages to your friends who have ordered shirts but don't necessarily follow woot! as religiously as you do.

crazydoglady


quality posts: 4 Private Messages crazydoglady
ramyb wrote:Just a thought (and this is probably coming a bit too late since it seems all decisions have been made and finalized at this point)- but what if you were to print first-day shirts on anvil (at $12 or whatever), and then continue printing shirts in reckoning on AA? Especially when buying in bulk, the price difference between anvil and AA is not more than $3, and it would give people who want AA shirts the option to wait until it was in reckoning to purchase. Maybe a solution like that isn't feasible because reckoning shirts don't sell in high enough volume or something but I figured it could be a thought worth mentioning.



I had a similar thought that I wasn't going to bother to post, but since you have a little bit of pull at woot I'll piggy-back on your post. I would be willing to pay an additional $2 or $3 per shirt to get it on an AA. And I would be willing to wait for it. How about giving the option of an AA (where one chooses the size) for an additional cost and a "print once a week" arrangement? I pay extra for green and recycled products because I believe in supporting what is important to me... American jobs are important to me.

ETA: To be clear, I would be willing to pay $17 or $18 for a shirt in reckoning if it was on a blank made in America.

tnode192


quality posts: 2 Private Messages tnode192
Narfcake wrote:
Texas Jeans are made in the USA, so consider that the next time you need to buy a pair.



Thanks! Had not heard of them. The custom fit options look good since I'm both big and tall.


dcroe05


quality posts: 12 Private Messages dcroe05

After sleeping on it, and reading the responses of everyone else, I think I have a better handle on my own feelings about this change.

1. I've never liked the AA blanks that Woot uses, but I don't dislike them either. They were just what Woot shirts came on, and I like the designs.

2. I'm not wild about the outsourcing, but that's tempered somewhat by the knowledge that AA is no worker's paradise.

3. I feel manipulated and lied to. This decision has obviously been in the works for a while. In this thread, there is a staffer saying they've been testing Anvil blanks for years. Yet only 36 days ago, when they announced a price increase a Woot staffer said this:

Jason Toon wrote:The sad fact is, nothing in our business - blank shirts, ink, labor, shipping - is getting any cheaper. A happier fact is that Shirt.Woot has a full roster of cool projects in the works for 2012, which we just couldn't do on the incredible shrinking margins of our old price.



But now it seems like 2 of the 4 things that aren't "getting any cheaper"--blanks and labor--now are getting cheaper. And moreover, you knew that when you made the post.

I make my shirt-buying choices based 3 things:

1. The quality of the design. We have yet to see whether this decision will deter the artists from submitting here.

2. The quality of the product. I guess I'll have to try one and see what I think.

3. The quality of the company. And right now this is the one I can't pin down. In my few experiences with your customer service, you guys have been top-notch. But how your company makes changes like this is part of how your company is viewed. And I don't think that announcing a price change while holding back the knowledge that you're also going to change the quality* of the product is up to the standards I've come to expect from Woot.

* I'm reserving judgement on whether this change is going to lower quality, but I think we can all agree it will change it.

How do I think this will affect my own purchases?
I don't know. Unless I see a design I can't live without I'll probably hold off buying any of the new blanks, until I hear feedback from others. And I'll see if my favorite artists stay here, or if they trickle away to other sites.

I do think, however, that if you're so confident of the quality of the new shirts, that a wonderful gesture would be to pick some of your better artists and customers (artists and customers that are vocal and active on these boards) and send them one or two comps. Let them tell us whether these shirts are as good.

j-o-h-n


quality posts: 4 Private Messages j-o-h-n

Dear shirt.woot,

No thank you.

Higher prices AND crappier blanks, no thank you

novastarj


quality posts: 30 Private Messages novastarj

Personally, I'm going to hold off on new purchases until I start reading some feedback about the quality of the new shirts.

And like many people here, to me this seems like a pure money grab. Last month the price is raised $2 (increasing profit margins $2, sad but understandable). Now the blank switch increases profit margins ~$3 more. So a total of $5 extra made by Woot per shirt (and pure additional profit, unless Woot was selling the shirts at a loss in January). I understand the increasing costs of doing business, but these actions in combination still reflect poorly on the Woot brand.

Also, I hope artist compensation (both first day and royalties) at least increases. It's held steady for too long, and amid the large increases to the first day print run and price increases, it seems appropriate.

moorerandall


quality posts: 1 Private Messages moorerandall
dcroe05 wrote:
But now it seems like 2 of the 4 things that aren't "getting any cheaper"--blanks and labor--now are getting cheaper. And moreover, you knew that when you made the post.



The shirts are still screen printed in the US that doesnt mean that the labor cost Woot has going into it gets any cheaper does it ?




dilettante


quality posts: 0 Private Messages dilettante
crazydoglady wrote:ETA: To be clear, I would be willing to pay $17 or $18 for a shirt in reckoning if it was on a blank made in America.



This.

I vaguely remember a website I purchased shirts from a while back that mainly printed on Gildan, but had an AA option as an upsell... why wouldn't this option work here?

There's a "build-your-own" T-shirt shop down the road from my house that also offers both, with the AA shirts being a little more.

bhcompy


quality posts: 15 Private Messages bhcompy

Please offer tall options. American Apparel is short as it is and barely goes past my belt(6'2, long torso), and that's with upsizing already to offset the rather childlike adult sizing.

letsgoskatepool


quality posts: 2 Private Messages letsgoskatepool

I am sure I am repeating the sentiments of everyone else, but I am pretty disappointed by this move. For starters, my wife loves the way the shirts fit. She refuses to buy shirts online except from Woot because of the quality and fit of the blanks they use. Personally I prefer the quality and made in USA stamp, at least one of which are going out the window. I have a feeling this is one of those decisions that came from above, the Amazonian overlords, telling the Woot people to increase their margins if they want to maintain the autonomy they currently have over the company. The price increase and supplier change fit that narrative. We will try the new stuff, however we will be much more picky when it comes to buying a shirt. While clicking the big yellow button was done on the slightest whim, now it will actually have to be a conscious decision. I hope you change your mind, but if not thanks for all the good times of free-spirited shirt buying.

ctdietz


quality posts: 3 Private Messages ctdietz

A few observations.

Woot's an American business. If this move helps them remain in business and keep their jobs located in America, then hooray! If Shirts.woot can no longer maintain a profit but continues to use the same supplier out of some misguided sense of public duty until they close their doors, does anybody really win?

Now think back on all the crap you've bought from the woot parent site over the last several years and ask yourself how much American Made really means to you.

Quality and fit are more real concerns. But I'll wait until I have tried the new shirts and form my own opinion at that time. If I don't like them then I'll make a decision not to buy based on that.

I'm not saying we shouldn't support American companies. Just keep in mind that Woot's not exactly located in Kazakhstan. You can boycott if it makes you feel better. Just keep in mind that you're jeapordizing American Jobs by doing so.

dcroe05


quality posts: 12 Private Messages dcroe05
moorerandall wrote:The shirts are still screen printed in the US that doesnt mean that the labor cost Woot has going into it gets any cheaper does it ?



Valid point. I should have clarified that only some of the labor is affected.

chennai8


quality posts: 2 Private Messages chennai8
jeninmaine wrote:...
Bluck, Anvil shirts are total crap. My folks have owned a silk-screening shop for 25 years (until they took arrows to their knees...just kidding) and Anvil shirts are the craptasticest of the crap.

The cotton/poly blend are flimsy and wicked uncomfortable, and the 100% cotton are just weird. Stiff as hell and thick - too thick. I remember wearing lots of misprints as a kid and the Anvil shirts were no good for doing any kind of sports in as they felt like wearing a tarp. The neckholes were too tight, the ribbing around the neck was so wide (I like the narrower ribbing on the AA shirts a lot better), and the fit was just weird.
...
Shapeless discomfort, ahoy!



ProfHotpants wrote:I have some blanks I have personally been testing for three years. They have been worn and washed weekly. They still look great and feel soft, and they are my preferred tees. Hands down.



One of you is lying ... Which one is it ?

neyfam2000 wrote:Woot!--going from "Deal-a-day" to "Site-a-day"

citizencoyote


quality posts: 42 Private Messages citizencoyote
ramyb wrote:Just a thought (and this is probably coming a bit too late since it seems all decisions have been made and finalized at this point)- but what if you were to print first-day shirts on anvil (at $12 or whatever), and then continue printing shirts in reckoning on AA? Especially when buying in bulk, the price difference between anvil and AA is not more than $3, and it would give people who want AA shirts the option to wait until it was in reckoning to purchase. Maybe a solution like that isn't feasible because reckoning shirts don't sell in high enough volume or something but I figured it could be a thought worth mentioning.



Or, would it be possible to give wooters the option of shirt blank when ordering? I understand that could be a logistical nightmare, but one can dream.

I'm disappointed, obviously. The "made in the USA" angle was a selling point for me with Woot, what with the nation's economy struggling so over the years. Yes, it's good Woot has chosen a supplier that obviously works hard to be responsible and pay their workers living wages, but those workers are in another country. Great for them, not so great for us.

I guess for now I'll wait and see how these new shirts perform while I mull over the switch. I'm not happy, though, and us wooters deserve a better answer about recent events (price increase followed by this switch) than we've been given.

killerorca


quality posts: 4 Private Messages killerorca

Woot you can add me to the list of people who are going to take a wait and see approach with the new anvil blanks. I have nothing terrible to say about the AA shirts, except they wore a little long on me (shut up I know I have a shorter torso), but I have not had the shirts for any length of time to judge their durability or longevity.

You may seriously want to consider lowering the daily price back to $10 though, many people are feeling quite baited and switched. Or at least keep AA as an up-sell option.

p.s. the sizing chart for the binge is still broken.

MrsBones


quality posts: 1 Private Messages MrsBones

Add me to the list of ladies that actually like AA's sizing. I understand that a fair amount of ladies do not, so if we are moving to a format that works better for them, it probably will not for me. I am 5'8", small-chested, and slim build (about 117 lbs.) It's hard for me to find a tee that's cut appropriately for my frame - most end up being too baggy in the chest/sleeves.

I also support the idea of being able to "upgrade" to AA at checkout. I'd pay an extra couple of bucks to get a shirt that actually fits my scrawny little body.

If I'm to keep buying shirts, I need MXS! Please add my size!

Narfcake


quality posts: 279 Private Messages Narfcake
ctdietz wrote:Now think back on all the crap you've bought from the woot parent site over the last several years and ask yourself how much American Made really means to you.



I bought my radiator for my truck (built in Loiusiana) from Amazon because it was made in the USA.
I bought my extension cords from Amazon because they were made in the USA.
I bought my toilet seats from Amazon, because they were is made in the USA.
I bought my Ridgid PEX crimper from Amazon, because it was made in the USA.

My ancestry isn't from the USA, but I live here ... and I rather purchase products made here too.

amcatanzaro


quality posts: 8 Private Messages amcatanzaro

If I have two choices of an item, one US vs one non US, I will pick the US one easily every time. It's part of my decision making process and I choose faster when that is an option.
Do I buy 100% US goods? Of course not. I have small children that adore plastic. But if I have a choice, US goods are what I choose.

I wasn't going to stay up. Drat! Foiled again!

Travel in style! Travel in a Woot shirt!

bluetuba


quality posts: 58 Private Messages bluetuba

Most of my concert tee shirts are printed on Anvil and I can say that I like them far less than my AA shirts from Woot. The anvil ones are noticably shorter (I'm a tall guy) and less comfortable because they are more coarse and don't seem to fit as well.

Gesani


quality posts: 6 Private Messages Gesani

Increased labor cost!?!? Guess I'm in the wrong state. I haven't had a raise in 4 years, and the last one was due to the fact minimum wage went up. I'm sure millions of people out of work it shouldn't be to hard to find cheaper labor. I'm sure that's not the path that wants to be taken but the turn off is there. Sadly since most corporations have noticed they can get more done with fewer employees and at lower cost it's a road that's very commonly taken.

docsbear


quality posts: 3 Private Messages docsbear

I'm sorry to hear this news Woot. I would definitely be loath to change to a different blank even if that was the only issue. I truly enjoy the AA tees. My largest point of contention, however, is the fact that your tees will no longer be printed on blanks made in the USA. As a U.S. Navy retiree, I make a conscious choice to buy American as often as possible. I buy only American vehicles and apparel. On these two points, I refuse to waver. I am not all that picky about clothing. I'm one of the few women out there who wears T-shirts and jeans for most all occasions. But it was sure nice to find some tees that matched my humor, fit me well and were made in the USA, all at a cost I found reasonable. I even supported your $2 increase in price because you said it was to enable you to stay with your same AA partnership. Bully for you! I bought your first $12 shirt. Now I am disappointed. It seems I must stop buying your shirts, not only for myself, but also for my husband, my children and as gifts for friends and family as well. Good-Bye shirt.woot. It was fun while it lasted.

sgtgreeneusmc


quality posts: 5 Private Messages sgtgreeneusmc

I think this is a bad move all the way around.

Haast


quality posts: 0 Private Messages Haast

I am nowhere near the customer a number of other posters are, but hiking the price then changing to a cheaper blank feels extremely disingenuine.

I don't come to shirt.woot for pet projects, I come here to buy quality screen print t-shirts on quality blanks at a reasonable price. So your suggestion you need the margins for pet projects means absolutely nothing to me.

I won't give the "I'll never buy another thing here" ultimatum. The $2 price hike made me think a little more before clicking buy, but was understandable. To follow on by switching the blanks mfg to a low cost supplier a month later.... shady. I've had bad experience with Anvil shirts in general, though I won't rule out that you guys found a quality blank from them. Now I see you as on par price and quality-wise with any of the other guys on TeeMagnet, whereas you used to be the only vendor I seriously considered.

tl;dr - your changes won't get a total boycott from me, but there will be a much, much higher threshold to pressing the buy button. It's fairly likely my shirt.woot oddessy is over after I pick up a couple of reckoning shirts I've been eyeing for a while.

Mavyn


quality posts: 22 Private Messages Mavyn

I doubt the ProfHotPants bought a shirt 3 years ago to 'test' it. I do not doubt that she HAS an Anvil tee that was purchased three years ago, and wears/washes it often to feel comfortable evaluating it's feel and wear.

That said, I am sad that woot won't be supporting an American company. Not sad to see AA go, just sad that there aren't other options. I do hope the shirts continue to be 100% cotton and not a poly/mix.

My speech is not parsing. I am speaking in ellipsis.

kwlundy


quality posts: 0 Private Messages kwlundy

So, when you are going to add Big & Tall shirt sizes? I see so many shirts that I want to buy for myself, but alas, cannot because your shirts are too small (or short) in all the wrong places.

obiwancanubi


quality posts: 0 Private Messages obiwancanubi

I love the AA's soft and form fit. Anvil is a sub-par import shirt, stiff and not as comfortable on the skin.

I would rather the shirt price increase to meet profit standards rather then move to a cheaper shirt for WOOT.

Sorry but I won't be buying Anvil shirts.

salemsticker


quality posts: 1 Private Messages salemsticker

I just ran to my closet to find out if I had any anvil brand shirts, before I weighed in on this. As it turns out, I do. On of the staff shirts I received doing work for a non-profit has an anvil tag. I got the shirt in mid-July of 2011 (7months ago). The neck is toast. The $6tees shirts I have, have held up better, which I got a year before and have worn more. The Anvil tee fit well at first, but I haven't worn it for a couple months because of the neck and because it's gotten a worn (out) feeling to it now. Maybe I have a big head.

Also, raising the price didn't matter to me; as in if two bucks means you can't afford it, then you can't afford the ten. Changing to a cheaper shirt after the price increase makes me feel like I've been the victim of a bait and switch. I'd rather pay more still to keep quality where it is.

Lastly, American made means American jobs. I think it's great that anvil does right by their people, but as an American company, that means you're not doing right by yours. I realize that AA will neither live, nor die by your purchase, but at the quantities you guys order, I'd be willing too bet that at least one Joe lost his job or got his hours cut.


Please stick with AA. Please Please Please.

tsummers23


quality posts: 0 Private Messages tsummers23

shirt.woot just pulled a netflix.

Icy13


quality posts: 0 Private Messages Icy13
bluejester wrote:I second the previous "well said" post. Even when ordering the randoms, if I got something that I didn't like, it was still a comfy shirt in the end.

America needs jobs and there's a big part of me that grieves the end of using AA blanks. I know that this may sound trite to some, but to me there was a quintessentialy American feel to shirt.woot. They used American made product to provide opportunity to all designers of all backgrounds.

I really do like woot as a company. They have great customer service and staffers who go the extra mile for their customers and from what I can tell, their employees as well.

I didn't mind and totally shrugged off the notion of the price increase, inflation happens. But this...I love you guys, but this...

...it gives me pause. Why would you do this to Americans who need jobs? You seem like you guys care over there.



Yes, America right now needs more minimum wage jobs sewing t-shirt blanks. That is the magic bullet to save the american economy. Low wage, low skill, low future labor.

Well said.

trenton21


quality posts: 0 Private Messages trenton21
Icy13 wrote:Yes, America right now needs more minimum wage jobs sewing t-shirt blanks. That is the magic bullet to save the american economy. Low wage, low skill, low future labor.

Well said.



You have to start somewhere.


taternuggets wrote:On the plus side, I'll no longer need to "adopt" that little Honduras kid... he'll find work.

And that will free up another $20 bucks for woot shirts.



I concur.

Hopefully this will mean less of those commercials.

Narfcake


quality posts: 279 Private Messages Narfcake
Icy13 wrote:Yes, America right now needs more minimum wage jobs sewing t-shirt blanks. That is the magic bullet to save the american economy. Low wage, low skill, low future labor.

Well said.


You're showing your ignorance.

AA pays around $13/hour to their factory workers, PLUS benefits.

In the past decade, the US lost over 700,000 jobs in the textile industry. It matters.

Eeoraptor


quality posts: 0 Private Messages Eeoraptor

My biggest question is do they FEEL the same. I have some horribly scratchy Gildan shirts from other sites and cant bear to wear them even though I love the graphics on them.

You can tell me about the sizefitribbedcollarblahblah... but its the hand.. the feel of the fabric that matters most when I choose clothing.

I have sensitive skin

dolemite007


quality posts: 0 Private Messages dolemite007

So far everyone BUT Woot are saying Anvil shirts are inferior to AA. Hmm.

BTW, people are talking about how AA treats their workers...can anyone elaborate on the working conditions there?

aharrison7


quality posts: 0 Private Messages aharrison7
nmpls wrote:1/2 an inch is huge when you should already be buying tall sizes (I already buy 1 size too big). I'll try one when a design I like comes up, but I'm unhappy.



Exactly...1/2" is no small matter for a 6+ footer....Woot shirts (AA blanks) were always great in actually being...well long enough without swimming in the width of the shirt...

also...so much for "still made in the USA"

The sad fact is, nothing in our business - blank shirts, ink, labor, shipping - is getting any cheaper. A happier fact is that Shirt.Woot has a full roster of cool projects in the works for 2012, which we just couldn't do on the incredible shrinking margins of our old price.



Dear Woot - this is from your price increase post. Apparently, you are mistaken. Your cost of business IS getting cheaper. At the cost of your happy shirt.wooters.

ehsanders


quality posts: 0 Private Messages ehsanders

As a purchaser of around 40 w00t shirts over the last fourish years I think I'm qualified to offer an opinion, the first comment I've offered in that time, BTW.

The AA shirts fit me great, at 6' with a long torso the length was on the bubble for me, so the shorter shirt might be an issue. I'll buy one when a design comes up that I like, but I have not been a fan of Anvil in the past, so I am definitely a bit wary of the change. I'm disappointed because the new shirts aren't made in the US, but I'll be even more disappointed if I end up paying $2 more for the same heavy, scratchy, very inconsistently sized Anvil shirts that I have known in the past.

jeremytheindian


quality posts: 17 Private Messages jeremytheindian
salemsticker wrote:I just ran to my closet to find out if I had any anvil brand shirts, before I weighed in on this. As it turns out, I do. On of the staff shirts I received doing work for a non-profit has an anvil tag. I got the shirt in mid-July of 2011 (7months ago). The neck is toast. The $6tees shirts I have, have held up better, which I got a year before and have worn more...



It is highly doubtful that Woot ill be using and selling the same quality shirt that a non-profit used for it's volunteers.

It's already been posted multiple times that staff has tested and approved the shirts based on quality. People need to stop comparing them to the free shirts you got in college for going to study night until they have a chance to test them out themselves.


Wootx16-Winex1-Kidsx13-Shirtx20-Selloutx8-Homex1-BOCx2

j5


quality posts: 63 Private Messages j5

Mr Collins, what do you think of all this?

move along

profbrendan


quality posts: 7 Private Messages profbrendan
dolemite007 wrote:So far everyone BUT Woot are saying Anvil shirts are inferior to AA. Hmm.

BTW, people are talking about how AA treats their workers...can anyone elaborate on the working conditions there?


Having not worked there I can't tell you from personal experience, but from my understanding it's not so much about how the workers are treated as how the owner, Dov Charney, behaves. He's been hit with several harassment lawsuits due to his beliefs and attitudes toward sex, and the company has generated discrimination controversy by making retail hiring decisions based at least partly on the candidate meeting an appearance standard. Naturally, these incidents have been refuted or explained by others within AA, but they're still out there.

On the other hand, as Narfcake pointed out the manufacturing workers make double the minimum wage, there's apparently a very good benefit package, they promote from within, they seem to be environmentally conscious in reducing their waste, and they have a pretty strong history of promoting equality and immigration reform.

So are they the worst company? No. Are they the best? No. They have some very unique flaws but also make a good product, so ultimately it comes down to whether the consumer is comfortable supporting them.

You can also google "American Apparel Controversy" and read plenty of other stuff about them, some bad and some good, from the past 12 or so years.