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Alex Solis and Terry Fan to design two t-shirts for The Valerie Fund

April 6, 2009

I’m thrilled to announce that Alex Solis and Terry Fan will be creating two t-shirts for The Valerie Fund this month! Alex and Terry are both Threadless rock stars so we feel lucky to have these guys working with us on a limited edition tee for this cause. Each of them felt strongly about the project so we can’t wait to see what they come up with!


Great causes inspire great design

March 23, 2009

What makes the creative process flow smoothly for a designer?

In my experience, designers seek inspiration because it makes the work fun. Where does inspiration come from? For me it’s when I’m challenged to make something that I think could push the limits of design or when the artwork has the potential to take on a larger meaning. When an illustration can represent a positive influence in society (a non-profit organization doing great things for example) things have the potential to get really interesting. The art becomes larger than life.

no contest

March 23, 2009

I’ve been working towards a solution for bringing artists together with non-profits to produce t-shirts for doing fundraising. Originally I thought about posting a contest on CrowdSpring and/or 99designs for the Valerie Fund shirt AND issuing an RFP to select artists -and then changed my mind because once I started talking to more artists the more I realized the contest wasn’t necessary. I think this more personal method will give the artist the best possible shot at creating a great t-shirt that speaks to what the Valerie Fund represents.

Valerie Fund T-Shirt: Creative Brief

March 20, 2009

We are looking for t-shirt artwork that symbolizes some of the essential qualities that the Valerie Fund represents including compassion, family, support, perseverance and recovery. We are all about helping children and any artwork that will strike a chord with us will need to represent our core values. The artwork must be strong enough to stand on its own. 


Male and female, ages 16 to 50. 
We want to look contemporary, casual, progressive, stylish.


This tie was created to raise funds in 2008. It shows a field of hearts and the letters “VF”. It is a good example because the tie is aesthetically pleasing in and of itself but also references the Valerie Fund specifically.


Do not place the Valerie Fund logo in the design.


leave comments with any questions you have or email miguel (at)

Valerie Fund Website


March 20, 2009

Thropic? T-Shirts for social good? What’s the deal with that (with crossed arms and suspicious undertones)..

When I speak to non-profits and people in general about Thropic this is usually the first question I face. It’s natural and fair and I honestly welcome the skepticism because it gives me the opportunity to talk about Thropic and what we do. What worries me is that people have this question but don’t ask. So in the interest of full transparency I want to try and lay out a few important points about what we believe in and how we operate this unique business.

Thropic provides a method and a platform for free-agent fundraisers to raise money for causes on the internet via custom designed t-shirts.

Because we are in the business of creating great shirts that raise money for non-profits we realize that we must uphold the highest level of integrity and openness.

Open and Fair

We’re open about what we do and (we think) fair and equitable with all aspects of how we do business. In a nutshell this is how Thropic rolls when it comes to sharing the dollars:

  • Shirts sell for $15
  • Shirts cost approximately $3-$4 for Thropic to manufacture (depending upon the nature of the artwork, number of colors, print techniques, quantity etc.)
  • $1 per shirt will be given to the winning artist
  • 50% of the profits will be given to the non-profit (about $5-$6 per shirt, payable as a donation from Thropic)
  • Donations over and above the $15 sale price will go directly to the non-profit (via paypal)

We base this approach on the Fair Trade model since we realize the need for a sustainable system that lifts everyone: non-profits/causes, artists and Thropic.

We don’t give away 100% of our profits (or say that we are) because we believe having a business with a positive cash flow puts us in the best possible position to help. In order to effectively compete in the market and continually expand the usefulness and reach of  Thropic we need profits (but only our fair share). 

Valerie Fund T-Shirt Drive Announcement

March 12, 2009

We are doing a T-Shirt fundraiser for The Valerie Fund !!  The Valerie Fund Children’s Centers comprise the largest network of healthcare facilities for children with cancer and blood disorders in New Jersey, and one of the largest in the nation. They host over 35,000 patient visits each year. Here is a great video (created by the folks at @coynepr) that tells their story: