Arts Post
Posted at 09:30 AM ET, 02/01/2012

Occupy T-shirt: Is Vineyard Vines mocking the 99%?

Updated 9:50 a.m. with a response from Vineyard Vines

Vineyard Vines — clothier of those who use “summer” as a verb, as in, “I summer on Martha’s Vineyard” — is a brand with a consumer base that stands on the wrong side of the Occupy Movement’s 99 percent. But that didn’t stop them from giving the one percent an Occupy of their own:an Occupy Martha’s Vineyard T-shirt.
(Screenshot, Vineyard Vines)

The $35 shirt features a front pocket with the brand’s pink whale logo and the word “occupy” below. On the back of the shirt, a beachgoer rests in a tent, surrounded by signs that read “More ice for the cooler!” “More cheeseburgers” and “More time on the water!” Below the image, the whale appears again, with the phrase “Every day should feel this good.”
(Screenshot, Vineyard Vines)

Is D.C.’s McPherson Square no different than a campsite at the beach? The shirt seems to imply it doesn’t take the protesters, and their issues (among them: poverty, unemployment and lack of healthcare) very seriously. As of 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, the link to the shirt’s page on Vineyard Vines’ site was broken. Spokesperson Lindsey Worster said this was because the t-shirt has sold out.

Vineyard Vines responds:

We were also intrigued by the sudden burst of interest in the blogger community last night, as the t-shirt has been online for a while now.
Here is a comment about the t-shirt from brothers and co-founders, Shep and Ian Murray:
We left our corporate jobs in Manhattan to pursue the American Dream. With a lot of hard work and perseverance, our business continues to grow and we feel grateful everyday to our employees and loyal customers.
Everyone who knows us knows us [sic] we’d rather be on the beach than behind our desks, hence the inspiration for our “Occupy” design. As businessmen, we understand the severity of the economic climate and its impact on the industry. However, by nature we are lighthearted and never take ourselves too seriously.

By  |  09:30 AM ET, 02/01/2012

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