We all have a thing about tee shirts. Especially a good old reliable, plain tee shirt. And TRiCKETT’s Sport Shirts are ones that we really like. They have always come in a couple of great staple colours – navy and grey – that look as good on their own as they do toning down a proper mental jacket or something. And now, finally, they’re available in white.
Part of what makes them so good is the fact that they include some fancy shrink to fit technology, meaning that – when you’ve worn it for a bit and bunged it in the washer (or got the missus to do it, eh, lads? Am I right? #Lads?) – it fits you just right. I don’t get it either but don’t worry, you can read more about it here and Mr. TRiCKETT will explain it better than me. Anyway, it results in an especially solid look; even more so now they come in white. To mark this, I spoke to the good folks in charge (Iain and Fern) to discuss some mutual loves – primarily stuff like tee shirts, football and American things…
Proper: Morning, you two. How’s things? Burnley ended up getting promoted, Iain.
Fern: Morning, Paul. Yeah, I am good thanks, just got back from New York City, doing a bit of work, sightseeing and eating burgers. I hope you’re alright too. Yep, Burnley are promoted… They played good football, beat a local team and didn’t get to the Semi Final of the FA Cup.
Iain: I am excellent cheers and, yes, Burnley are promoted and I still find it all a bit weird. I have enjoyed this season far more than the last promotion as, don’t tell anyone like, but I genuinely think we deserved this one and may even have a slim chance of staying up. Odd feeling. Dyche seems like a real people manager; he has ginger hair and spends far too much on shoes. So he is alright by me. In actual events in my life, I have been packing up jackets and worrying about wool.
P: He does seem a top manager. A manager – or coach – who features a lot in the world of TRiCKETT is the late, great Vince Lombardi. Could you explain this appreciation to those less versed in the history of the Green Bay Packers?
F: The only real way that I can explain our love for Vince Lombardi is that he was a bit like Sir Alex Ferguson, but without the hype and chewing gum. He was a calm character that believed in his player’s ability to win; even if they lost games, he still knew that they would come good. He was given the time to do great things at Green Bay that most coaches and managers just aren’t given nowadays. He also came out with great one-liners about leadership and teamwork.
I: I just like him because he wore great clothes. He was an alright coach too.
P: Sound enough reasons for me. Right, these Sports Shirts. Talk to me.
I: Well the Sports Shirt is something that we were keen to make when we started TRiCKETT and it was the first item that we ever made. A tee shirt is the only item of clothing you need when training or playing sport and we wanted to create something that we could wear every day. Fern and I spend A LOT of time making phone calls, talking to people in pubs, searching the internet and with our heads in books. We heard about these cotton tee shirts that NASA (I am not joking!) used in the 1960s for their newest recruits. They were one size and could shrink to fit any size. I was pretty blown away by this and doubly so when I found out it was a British company that knitted and treated the fabric. Weird, eh? Anyway, we hunted them down and found this magic fabric and it really does work. Get a size that should fit you, wear it a few times, wash it and you’ll have your perfect tee shirt.
P: Sound. American sports and that seem a big influence on TRiCKETT. Where does that come from?
I: I had relatives that lived in America and I was really lucky that my family and I got to go quite frequently. I had pretty much always liked American sport from a young age and loved watching the NBA highlights once a week on ITV with that really beautiful lady that presented it. I can’t remember her name… Anyways, all I used to do when I got to America was get my Dad to buy me all the magazines and newspapers that he could that had sport in them and I would just spend holidays reading. Be that about new shoes, Wayne Gretzky or Deion Sanders. I just fell in love, we are really lucky now that you can just go on some team from Oklahoma’s website and see how they are doing, but back in the day it just seemed exotic and exciting. Not that going to Rotherham away with my Uncle to watch Burnley wasn’t equally as exciting as watching Michael Jordan… I am a recent newcomer to College American Football after I found my long lost cousin (we aren’t really related it just sounds better) Clint Trickett and discovered he played for the West Virginia Mountaineers. Then a new obsession began. My girlfriend is a patient lady.
P: So, Fern, do you share this love or do you just really like cats?
F: Hee hee! I would say I am that annoying girl that likes sport and can have a decent conversation about events and tactics rather than talk about Marshawn Lynch’s delicious quads. I do like American sport, but I would say that my specialties lay in American Football and Basketball. As regards to cats, I love them; I have just got a new one recently called Alvin, what a cutey he is!
P: Do you get much time over in America then?
F: I get to go every so often for bit and pieces and more often than not it is New York, but I’d love to go to Texas, actually be a tourist and eat steaks the size of tables.
I: I haven’t been for a little while (by my standards) but I am hoping to get out there soon and enjoy walking through an airport with no shoes or belt on showing off my socks and trying to hold my trousers up.
P: So that must be when you collect all the baseball cards and stuff that come with every purchase. I know you’ve definitely been collecting World Cup stickers… any good swaps?
I: I am officially hooked. The first packet I bought had Pirlo AND Neymar in; so that was it, I have got to collect them all. I do have a Brazil shiny that I can swap you for a Benteke and Lukaku?
F: Words fail me.
P: Quickly back to baseball – what the hell is going on?
I: Simply, it is 9 innings, no clock, 3 strikes, bat and ball, load your bases, take as long as you like to play, smack it out the park and have a good snooze in the stand if you are at a boring match in the sun. Yeah, it’s slightly more in depth than that but literally we all don’t have time to do that I have dogs to walk.
F: I have no idea what is going on for the most part, but the pitchers always excite me, how can you chuck a ball that hard? I am a Mariners fan sadly and never seem to watch them win much, but they do have a good logo.
P: Who should I support? Who is the Manchester United and who is the Stockport County?
I: There is one rule and one rule only to deciding what team to support and that is anyone but the Yankees. Well that used to be the case, but now I add the Dodgers to that too. Baseball is about as close as Americans come to having heritage in sport, they have grounds that are over 100 years old and some teams have been playing each other for longer than we have had a Football League. I won’t tell you who to support as that’s not fair (San Francisco Giants, always support the San Francisco Giants) but have a look around there are some great teams, with great histories and really weird stories. It’s hard to do equivalent teams for the MLB as there are only 30 teams, but I will try my best, as I love stuff like this! The Yankees and the Dodgers are very much the United and Arsenal and can be switched between the two. Jealously gets the better of all of us. Burnley are definitely the Pittsburgh Pirates, have been successful, but no one likes them outside of their local town and they like a scrap. The Toronto Blue Jays are like Wolves; a team that are well respected historically, but never really do that much. Stockport are like the Seattle Mariners, never win much, no one really cares about them that much and are from a weird bit of the country.
P: Pph! That will go down well but we’re digressing. You sell all sorts; from M&Ms to shoes. Is there ever anything that you think ‘this might be a bit too niche, even for us’?
I: There are loads of products where Fern comes running in saying “These will work really well” and I have a look at it and think, ‘what was she smoking when she found this?’ I am unfortunately the person that makes the decisions on whether we run something or not and thankfully we make and stock a lot more stuff than we don’t. I am easily influenced. I think what TRiCKETT has always been about was rekindling that feeling you had as a kid of getting something truly new. Take the maple syrup for example; the people who make it at Gibbons Maple Syrup are so lovely and were amazed that a weird shop in Lancashire wanted to stock their syrup. Christmas will bring even bigger tins too! Erm, like reissues of trainers are nice and stuff, but they never really recapture that moment of pure joy when you knew you were trying something for the first time. That’s what every product we stock aims to do, whether it is putting some eye black on, eating some popcorn or putting on a t-shirt it’s just great to have that feeling of trying something for the first time feeling now and then.
F: He kicked back bacon-flavoured candyfloss!!!
P: I think that’s a mistake. I’d try that. Just to finish, what have you got coming up over the next few weeks?
F: Over the coming weeks we have (in no particular order) shirts, shorts, t-shirts, socks, chukka boots, puffa jackets and some other bits, but I like keeping some stuff secret. There is one thing that I am MEGA excited about, but I can’t say or I will get stabbed by Iain, Lawyers and other people.
Thanks a lot to Iain and Fern for chatting to us.