Since the quake hit Japan on March 11, devastating northeastern parts of the country, people worldwide have shown their support by giving generously to charities organizing relief efforts in hard-hit regions. Japanese celebrities and brand names are also encouraging people to donate by organizing benefits and releasing special T-shirts, with profits going to the cause. Here are some of the tees that you might want to think about.
Online shopping mall, Zozotown’s Start Today t-shirt, impressively gives all of its ¥2,100 price tag directly to the Japanese Red Cross Society. In collaboration with its numerous suppliers (including A Bathing Ape and X-Girl), Zozotown takes care of the manufacturing, handling and postage charges (within Japan). The front is emblazoned with the message “Start Today,” and on the back are the names of all the suppliers who are collaborating in the relief project. The T-shirt can also be bought by overseas buyers (with additional postage costs). At the time of writing an impressive ¥309,908,000 had been donated to the cause.
AA, the solo project of Ueda Kishi of the rock band Mad Capsule Markets, has come up with a striking black t-shirt that boldly makes its point with “We’re Not Alone” printed on a clenched fist. It costs ¥3,500 and all proceeds, again, go to the Japanese Red Cross. Hardcore rock band Brahman have teamed up with fashion brand Virgo to create their charity tee, also at ¥3,500, with proceeds being donated to relief efforts. On the front, “Wake Up” is printed over a arresting image of a figure with its arms raised, while its back simply states “Re:Birth.”
Singer Ayumi Hamasaki’s simple “H♥PE” shirt is a feminine white tee, with a pink heart as the “o” in “hope.” Designed in collaboration with ViVi fashion magazine, it’s available for ¥1,500. Similarly using the heart symbol, celebrity idol Chinatsu Wakatsuki, who runs her own successful, if rather unfortunately named brand, W♥C, has based her design on the iconic “I ♥ NY” T-shirt. Her “I ♥ Japan” tees cost ¥2,100 on the W♥C website with all proceeds going to the Red Cross.
Designers, too, have come together to create original tees, including several international names that can be found on T-shirt printing company Sweatshop Union’s Rebuild project (all tees are ¥1,400 with all profits going to the Japanese Red Cross) and on Tomodachi Calling, with shirts for around $45.