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Future of Vintage t shirt Hobby

Post by stage1dave »

Hello all, been a while since my last post here...too damned busy with day job this year.

First of all, sorry to hear about the loss of the sales forum. I have noticed that dealing with paypal has become more complicated over the years (even for a private seller) so can't imagine the "hassle factor" in frequently updating a board/forum sales area to conform with their frequent policy changes.

Next, some personal observations; I have noticed my sales figures slipping over the last year. Undoubtedly, Canada Post shares some of this blame, usually the late summer/early fall is quite busy and it sure wasnt in 2018!

Secondly, I've noticed a real dropoff in vintage band shirt sales overall compared to the last 4 years. I think the vast amount of offshore rips are partly to blame here; but as Jimmy mentioned the sheer number of licensed reprints by the bands - or their management - at severely discounted prices (compared to a true vintage t) has probably had a disastrous effect on our market.

(I'm also wondering if we've exceeded "peak market" for some of these vintage t's, and just how much of an effect that's having)

The few casual encounters I have with millenials has convinced me they could care less about originality. As one 14 yr old told me, "this band" is really hot right now, so she just wanted a shirt with the band name on it. In other words, it just has to look cool...and be cheap!

(considering the band was Nirvana, I debated whether to tell her they are no more and Kurt left the building before she was born...but decided to let her uncle - who's a friend of mine - do that)

As with everything else, this hobby is generational. I've been involved with several "collectible" areas over the last 5 decades, and have continually noticed this...coins, musclecars, sportscards, albums, antique furniture, whatever.

(With the resultant ups n downs as participants move on, up, down, or sideways, and take their money with them)

I have also noticed that the sports end is picking up nicely tho; 1980/1990s NBA, MLB, and especially WWF stuff has outsold all my music stuff this year! I don't move too much TV stuff, but I see good interest in that as well. Not sure if there's enuff volume here to make up for the loss of the vintage tour t market, btw.

I'd be interested in hearing other sellers/collectors experiences in this (or other) regards, btw; as well as where the collective intelligenstia thinks this hobby is, or may be, headed.

(I'm of the opinion that "hard core" collectors are always in for the long haul, btw; with the odd tweak in their collection now and then)

Furthermore, on a positive note; I can see this site becoming a real clearing house for sellers/collectors to exchange whats hot or not, and hopefully keeping the enthusiasm for a closet full of vintage t's extant.

As well as the odd bitch and complain session, btw...

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Re: Future of Vintage t shirt Hobby

Post by jimmyj »

Hey D - indeed times are a changing!

The hobby is still alive and well. Seems like the millennials are using Instagram rather than eBay. There's definitely a higher degree of people purchasing for fashion rather than knowing much about the band in question. But all types of trends come and go. Definitely still a solid hobby and a collector's scene. But I do think the 80s is no longer in a sweet spot nostalgia wise, it's mid 90s and even 2000s.

The market also continues to be flooded, with more more people finding and posting - as well as more and more repros.

I'm trying to figure out what the best strategy going forward is now that I'm finally in a spot with more time on my hands.

Happy 2019!
Jimmy J

(Please note: Legit checks I do in this forum should not be considered 100% conclusive; I'm simply giving a gut reaction based on the limited information provided.)

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