48-Hour T-Shirt No. 1: “I Show How You Feel”

Posted by Rob Walker on December 1, 2008
Posted Under: 48-Hour T-shirt

The first 48-Hour T-Shirt is now no longer available. That’s the design, above: Three colors (metalic silver ink, black, flourescent green) on a gray American Apparel 4.3-ounce fine cotton athletic fit T. A summary of the research inspiring the design, below, is also available in PDF form, here.

This phrase was quoted in a recent paper by scholars researching the subject of mimicry and its role in the day-to-day marketplace.

One study, for instance, found that a waitress received larger tips when she “mimicked” customers by repeating orders verbatim, than when she paraphrased their orders. According to the researchers, being subtly mimicked “creates feelings of rapport, affiliation, and closeness toward the mimicker.”

The research was summarized in the April 2008 issue of The Journal of Consumer Research, in an article titled “Of Chameleons and Consumption,” which noted that prior studies suggested “that mimicry serves as an important communication tool, communicating to the person being mimicked that ‘I show how you feel.’” This newer research specifically explored “the effect of mimicry on consumption,” and how it might be used in, for instance, sales techniques.

Design by Derek Black, MFA candidate in the graphic design department of Savannah College of Art and Design (www.redneckillustrator.com).

The T-shirt “I Show How You Feel” is was available until 10 a.m. (Eastern) Wednesday, for $18 plus shipping. Order below.

The aim of The 48-Hour T-shirt Project is to prod consumers to think more about our own behavior, about how we can be manipulated, and about how we manipulate ourselves. Yes, doing this by way of products may be seen as either ironic, clever, or hypocritical. That’s (part of) the point.

(Please note that The Murketing Organization (that is, me, Rob Walker) does not make one thin dime from The 48 Hour T Shirt Project. All (100%) of the profits go to the student designers involved. In fact, your order goes directly to the designer, not to me.)

This T is no longer available. But feel free to direct fan mail or inquiries about your order to: derek@firehousedesigns.net.

Sign up to be notified via email when the next design debuts on Monday, December 8, here.

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The 48-Hour T-Shirt Project is proudly sponsored by The Murketing Organization, and Buying In: The Secret Dialogue Between What We Buy and Who We Are.

Further diversion may be found at MKTG Tumblr, and the Consumed Facebook page.

Reader Comments

would like to buy 48 hour tshirt but your web site is so confusing. none of it makes any sense all i want to do is order a 48 hour shirt

Written By phyllis bihary on December 8th, 2011 @ 10:26 am

As this and all 48-Hour T-shirt posts make clear, these shirts are no long available. They were available for, you know, 48 hours. In 2008 — the date on the posts. Sorry for the confusion.

Written By Rob Walker on December 26th, 2011 @ 11:08 am