A previous article explained why a torn t-shirt tag could indicate the print is a bootleg. It’s no surprise that bootleggers preferred printing on budget t-shirts, and a torn tag can indicate a factory second, or reject, that bootleggers would buy at discounted prices. But what other types of tags are a red flag for a bootleg tee?
Bootleggers were mostly nickel and dime operations that wanted to make some quick cash, but they were also very aware their inventory could get confiscated. With that in mind, you can bet they wanted to spend as little as possible on their inventory.
Enter the infamous Pakistan blanks.
Budget Blanks from Pakistan
In the late 1970s and 80s, Fantasy tags were the stand-out blank for bootleggers. They were cheap, and somewhat cheerful, but mostly poor quality. Fantasy tees featured what appears to be thicker cotton fibers but a much lower count of them, and the most basic construction possible. Most of them would shrink to unwearable sizes after a single wash – and also get completely mishappen.
A Fantasy XL is a modern M…if that.
1970s and 80s Fantasy Tags
Fantasy tags have also been targeted by modern counterfeiters, check our database for an example of a fake Fantasy tag.
But there were a ton of other Pakistan-based t-shirt tags from the same era, below is a sampling, and we’ll continue to add to this list.
If the shirt was worn to any degree – these tags often appear blank/frayed, with all the branding and text worn off.
Some of these brands were better quality, but none rivaled the cotton and construction of the US blanks that were circulating around the same time. You can see with all of these examples there is no strip of neckline fabric that the tag is usually neatly tucked under – the labels are just fastened directly to the collar seam.
1970s and 80s Pakistan-Based Vintage T-Shirt Tags
US Branded Tags, Pakistan Manufactured
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em! Brands in America likely caught wind of how inexpensive Pakistan blanks were and started using them for their merch.
Sherry, Florida, Made in Pakistan
The vast majority of Sherry tags read “Made in U.S.A.,” so it appears as though they experimented with lessor expensive blanks for a short period of time.
Poly Tees, Hawaii, Made in Pakistan
These tees always appear to have always been featured on Pakistan blanks.
TWT Transtees of USA, Made in Pakistan
Sun T-Shirts, LA, California, Made in Pakistan
If you have a Pakistan-based tag that isn’t featured here, please share it in the comments!
To be continued…