In this video Alex Zevallos names a few popular brands that print or have printed on Gildan blanks.
Firstly what is Gildan and what are blanks? Gildan is a manufacturer of blank or plain apparel items (available in a range of colours and sizes) that you can use to print your own designs on, say if you were wanting to start a clothing brand or create uniforms/merchandise to represent your brand, band, company, etc. You could go to the trouble of manufacturing your own blanks but for brands and companies that don’t have a lot of capital using blanks, such as Gildan’s, can be more cost effective.
What brands are on Alex’s list? Anti Social Social Club (who have used Gildan in the past but are now apparently using Independent Trading Co blanks), The Life of Pablo, Vlone (sigh), and Fear of God (only certain lines).
Why should I care? Some of you might not care, say if you like the cut/feel of Gildan or if you don’t mind dropping hundreds for a t-shirt manufactured and printed for only a few dollars, but most of us don’t have that much money to spend on one tee and if we did we would expect that the product would be a better quality and/or fit since it’s three or four times the price of a typical t-shirt. As Alex explains when you’re spending hundreds of dollars (either retail or resale) buying from these brands you’re paying for hype not quality. Sure these five brands and others have grinded to build that hype but are their products really worth the exorbitant prices?
How can I spot a Gildan blank? This can be tricky, particularly if you’re buying online. Your best bet would be to either contact the brand directly and ask or Google the brand and see if you can find any information on what blanks are used. If they’re using high quality blanks or manufacture their own items they’ll likely advertise it.
I’ve found a product I like but it’s expensive af and I know the brand uses cheap blanks. What should I do? The market is buyer driven so if you want to see more competitive pricing or better quality from your favourite brands don’t buy into the hype and only purchase items that you consider to be fairly priced. There are tonnes of other brands out there that offer on point designs at affordable prices, you just need to know where to find them. A great recent source for me has been the streetwearstartup subreddit which features posts from new, relatively unknown brands. Some of it takes the L but there’s also some quality in there like Anomaly Attire, RESURGENCE, and Steady Hands. Note that some of the brands that you come across may be using cheap blanks but a) the pricing is way more realistic and b) you’ll be supporting an everyday person trying to make their way in the streetwear industry, not an established brand taking advantage of the popularity of their products.