In 2010 I was researching the book on what makes kinds of markers indicate love or an emotional connection with our cities. I came upon STL Style out of St. Louis and several other similar companies who were making local themed t-shirts aimed at their local citizens. These I thought were fantastic examples of a “public display of affection” for you city. When you wear an STL Style or Rubber City Clothing (Akron) shirt you are proclaiming your affection for your city. ( Also check out Fleurty Girl from New Orleans and Detroit Lives.)
New t-shirts now available at STL Style
About a month later I was attending the Great Lakes Urban Exchange (GLUE) conference in Cleveland. As I looked through the list of attendees and their affiliations I noticed Jeff and Randy Vines from STL Style. These were the guys I had written about and here we were, far from our respective homes, coming together because of our passion for cities! Of course I introduced myself and we immediately connected.
So when I started thinking about doing a t-shirt that would coincide with my book, Jeff and Randy were the obvious connection. This shirt, which we designed together, embodies the idea of love of cities. When we connect with our city on an emotional level, amazing things can happen. We see when children, plants, pets or even objects are loved, they thrive. We need to nurture our relationship with our cities and find again that which we love about them.