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How many times have you been at a friend’s house, or eating out with someone and you see a really fantastic T-shirt but thought, “if only it was a little different?” You’re jealous, to say the least, because that’s the kind of T-shirt you’ve always wanted to own, with a few changes. The colors, the graphics, the way it looks like it was randomly splattered with other things, it all rocks. Of course, you could go to a T-shirt design shop and work with them to make your own, but it’s too time-consuming and let’s face it, you’re lazy.

Uniqlo, the store that seems to be expanding to more parts of the globe every day, has your back. And it’s really as simple as swiping your finger across the screen of your smart phone. Oh, and of course, shaking it.

Uniqlo, a casual wear designer, manufacturer and retailer, is one of the most well-known Japanese fashion brands outside of Japan. With stores located around the world, including 17 stores in the US (with plans for 200 stores across the United States by 2020), Uniqlo is targeting annual group sales of 5 trillion yen (about $61.2 billion US) by 2020 and is aiming to become the world’s biggest specialty retailer of “fast fashion” which includes stores like Zara, H&M, Forever 21, Urban Outfitters, etc.

In 2007, the “UT Project” store was launched in Harajuku. Designed to be a “futuristic convenience store for T-shirts”, it features T-shirt designs from many popular designers and the UT section of Uniqlo stores have grown bigger and more popular since then. You can now find UT T-shirts featuring well-known characters from comics, movies and Disney at most Uniqlo stores.

And now, with the release of their app UTme! Uniqlo has put the power of design right in your hands!

This app which is available on the Apple and Android stores, lets you design your own T-shirt right on your phone or tablet. You can choose three different methods to design your shirt: paint, typography and photo.

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With a few different color palettes and the freedom to draw whatever you want, you can come up with some pretty snazzy art!


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If you want a more exact lettering process, you can use the typography option to type in whatever you feel like! There aren’t too many formatting options though, only top/middle/bottom and left/center/right. You also can’t change fonts.


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You can upload pictures from your device to put onto your T-shirt. Either select from your library or take a photo right there! You can rotate, stretch and size the image as you like, but it must fit within the rectangular area in the front. No sleeve or back art unfortunately.

After you choose between paint, typography or photo, you get to step two: shake and remix!

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You can choose from three remixes, splash, glitch and mosaic. Only mosaic comes with a few more options as you can change the shape used to make the mosaic: square, rounded square or circles.

Then, shake away! The more you shake, the more you can alter the image. Don’t worry about over-shaking though, you can always clear what you just did.

You can add up to three graphic images on your T-shirt, and with different layering options you can create some pretty neat designs. The limit is your imagination (and the three graphic image limit)!

If you end up with something you like and you live in Japan, you are in luck! You can order your very own t-shirt for 1,990 yen (about US$19.60) plus shipping and taxes. At the moment, T-shirts only come in white. If you live in the Tokyo area, you can opt to go into their Ginza store to pick up the shirt yourself. Also if you order three or more shirts, they will waive the shipping fee.

Playing around with the app, we’ve definitely created some pretty cool T-shirt designs! One thing to note though, there was a disparity regarding who owned the rights to the T-shirt design. Originally, Uniqlo owned any T-shirt design that was produced by the app, but after some complaints, the terms of use for the app quietly changed so that “the copyright of the Posted Data belongs to the User” (Article 9 iii). You should still be careful with copyright infringement, as the responsibility for usage of copyrighted material is on the user with the Terms of Use stating, “The User hereby shall get a prior approval to post or otherwise transmit the Posted Date.” So, be careful!

This is only the first week of the app, and it certainly has room to grow, but for now it’s extremely entertaining. As inspiration can strike from anywhere, you’ll definitely be glad the app is installed on your phone for the next time you see someone wearing your ideal T-shirt.

Here’s what we’ve made so far!

▼Staff T-shirts on the way!

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▼We also might have super hero syndrome

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▼For those who like a little scenery in their shirts.

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Source: Huffington Post Japan, Wikipedia (Uniqlo), UTme! Uniqlo
Top Image: UTme! Uniqlo
Images: RocketNews24
Video: YouTube (UNIQLO)