Sunday, March 30, 2008

This got the creative juices flowing

Whats our team got that you aint got?
McAdoo, McAdoo, McAdoo. Sung by teammate Randy Smith.

Thanks to

Marketing Freebie Idea for Buffalo NY t-shirts

Did I mention I got my stickers in the mail recently? They look great and can't wait to give them away to friends and family (and down the road, some customers). I also had a nice little promo idea. With the purchase of a t-shirt, the package will include one or two stickers AND one old bills or sabres trading card. Just to reinforce the Buffalo aspect of the company. This is a nice and inexpensive hook to get people interested. Who knows, maybe that will influence a sale in the hopes of getting a certain card...or maybe not but its still a nice piece of cross promotion that cost me only .05 cents per shirt (or so). The image above are some of my recently purchased cards. Anyone want a 1981 Gilbert? Or how about Lindy Ruff? Then order a t-shirt and you might get it for free!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Some Creative types out there

Star Wars remake. Thanks EBaum's World.

Monday, March 24, 2008

BfloTees Stickers ordered!

I ordered my stickers today! Should be done and in hand by Thursday, then I can start handing them out. Heres what they'll look like.
If you need stickers, I went to Sticker Giant. Good pricing, fast turnaround.
Want one, post a comment and I'll get in contact with you

Fun with peeps

Check out the diarama's and vote for your favorite. Me? Im a sucker for the butt jokes.

Tags for front of shirt

Good news, I found an embroiderer that is doing 40 of the front tags for me. Which is good since I wasnt keen on buying 1200 of them up front from the giant factory. Start small and build from least thats the plan.
Next up is to buy 40 shirts for the first, small run of shirts...and then off to the races!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Around Buffalo NY: Delaware District

Embroidered Front Label

Heard from the labelmaker and the price is pretty good: $205.00 (shipping included) for 1200. Thats a cost of 0.17 each for a high quality piece of branding.
Embroidered Damask no less.
My next inquiry is to produce these in low quantities (25-50) locally and forego this expense for now. I know someone (hi mom!) with an embroidery machine so the cost would be supplies only. That would be good for the initial run of shirts.
I also worked on hang tags and stickers (to give away) yesterday. Sticker cost initially will be $34/250, that's .134 per order (as these will be given away with each order) A great marketing/promotional tool though so its worth the .14 cents.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Web Landing Page

Worked on the "Opening Soon" landing page for the website today. Thats it above. Nothing major, just wanted to give it a little Buffalo blue collar attitude. Ill also put a link on it for people to sign up for the mailing list. Never too early to get a customer list!
I'm also working on t-shirt tags, Ill get some pricing for them this week. You can see the tags on the landing page-these will be placed at the bottom hem on front of the t-shirt. A nice branding effect I thought. I'll give props to Johnny Cupcakes on this idea. BTW, if I can model/promote my brand like his in the least, Ill be in great shape. What a great story.
Thems some tasty tees.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Friday Walk in Buffalo NY

Took a walk during lunch today and snapped a few pics.

I think this is the Larkin House that was recently purchased from a private school and being rehabbed into a private residence. Im guessing the missing door is being refurbished somewhere. That or its the new 'shabby-chique' bullshit thats making rounds.

Sign on my neighbors house rubbing in the fact they have a driveway that nobody uses while I have to park around the block because they took my spot in the street.

First robin sighting of the season, which means spring is on its way.

Here's another in the treetop. Actually its the same bird, different perspective. Gotta say Im impressed with the resolution on this digital camera. When I zoom in on these photos I can actually make out individual feathers. BTW, these trees are up there, 3-4 stories.

Now Im getting all Photoshop on this here robin.

Litter on the street. By the looks of it the culprit is just up the road a piece, its that fresh. I would have picked this up and thrown it into the trashcan just a few yards away but this hour I was in photo journalist mode. I was not there to change the course of events but to record them.
No, not really. I picked it up and threw it out–after I ate the tasty bits of course.
This is just before a mom and her baby walked by. I shouldve snapped a couple pics because the baby was in a furry bear coat (complete with ears) and strapped to moms chest facing me with arms a flailin'. Damn cute when they arent yours. But I felt a bit weird doing that so I balked, smiled and said hello. Maybe next time.

Just a block or so from my diggs is the Frank Lloyd Wright Heath House (I think thats what it is called). Whatever, some house some dude designed that some people get all worked up over.
I dont have time for this kind of trivial uninspired work, Ive got t-shirts to design.

Found this brass sign/plaque and connector on an old apartment building near home. Odd, it doesn't look automatic.
But if youre not going to trust the city, who are you going to trust, am I right?

Rocking it old school.

Rock on.

All work © 2008 Courtney Creative. All Rights Reserved.

Change is Good

Yeah, thats right. After a week or so with the old logo, it just wasnt doing it for me. I wasnt feeling it. So I redid it-which is fine since I havent launched yet. You can view my old logo in a previous post. This was inspired, believe it or not, by an old Statler Towels paper towel holder. I don't know anything about the company other than they sold paper towels in the 50's and we have one of the holders in our basement. Inspiration can be anywhere I guess.
Now this logo I can dig. Plus it'll be a fun tee on its own damn it all. Brand this mother.
Comments are welcome...

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wholesale Pricing

Heard back from the local screen printer yesterday. He gave a price of $11.50/shirt with American Apparel (AA) tees or 4.50 per if I supply my own shirts. After a little digging and signing up to a few places, I found and qualified for wholesale pricing of 4.13 per for AA shirts that retail for 15.00. Nice. Im not positive on shipping charges though...thats my next inquiry. Also, I applied for wholesale status with AA and am waiting to hear back. Ive heard their price is 3.90 per with no minimum. They are supposed to get back to me today.
Ah, American Apparel ships free (over $50). Hopefully Ill hear back soon from them and get this ship on the water.

The other place for AA shirts is here:

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Random Buffalo NY Images from Camera

Last Summer (2007), Frank was in the West Side Rowing Club's Kid Camp where he learned to row. Thats him, third from bottom in the blue hat (is that the 3rd seat or 6th I don't know)

Heres another shot from rowing.

Heres Frank getting on the ice at Buff State, Jan 2008. Ive recently got back into hockey myself and thought it would be fun if Frank gave it a go. Hopefully next year well be doing skate n shoots together!

Abe patiently waiting.Shot in Summer 2007 at the Buffalo Historical Society.

There's that guy again. Summer 07. BHS.

I took this when I first got my camera with the macro lens. Up close and personal on my smoke. Ahh, schmokin, thems were the days. I quit in early Sept-coming up on 7 months April 4th.

All Work ©2007 David Courtney

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Potential Client List...ongoing

I'm still waiting to hear back from the local screen printer with a quote but he did acknowledge receipt of the email so that's a good sign. Nothing like waiting for a reply from a vendor (that's definitely something to remember-get back to potential clients fast!)
In the meantime I've started a list of potential clients I will pursue with targeted direct mail (perhaps a sample shirt), a phone call and/or a visit. Remember, the shirts will be Buffalo themed (from quirky hipster to retro looks, all things Buffalo).

Please add to this list:
Visitor Centers
College Stores
Sporting Events
Tours of sorts
Gift shops (ski resorts, theme parks)
Golf Courses?
Hospital gift shops?

Any other ideas out there?

As this list gets longer, Im starting to feel that it might be better to be more exclusive rather than saturating the market. Quality over quantity. Make the consumer want more.

Monday, March 10, 2008

This guy does some nice work

Buffalo Central Terminal
Abandoned 1979
Buffalo, NY


© Creative Commons

Still debating: farm out screen printing or DIY

I was thinking last night about teaming up with a printer vs doing it myself. I believe both will benefit me and heres how:
I'm going to do my own shirts first. Nothing big, maybe 3 designs (I have 12 ready), whip up a dozen or so of each and see what happens. This will give me shirts to use to photograph for advertising, samples to show retailers and some to sell if I'm lucky enough. I can purchase a small pro kit and screens, etc for 200-250 and start with a few one color jobs to keep costs down, buying the shirts from a online warehouse. Hiring a screenprinter at this point is just too costly. I'd have to print 50-100 shirts of each to make it close to being cost effective. I'd rather start smaller and gauge response beforehand.
I will have to check online retailers that might be able to offer smaller runs of shirts. I might be able to find someone for this part online, then go local for the bigger runs.
After that I will revisit hiring a screen printer when I can gauge popularity so I can focus on the marketing/selling of the shirts rather than the making of them. I will definitely hire a local, small business screen printer for long as they are crafty.
Ill keep you posted. And by 'you' I mean...

Alright, I sent out an email to a local screen printer that does small run printing. They listed their prices here:
$5.56/shirt thats actually a really great price. Unfortunately, That isnt for the American Apparel shirt I want to us, so who knows. Hopefully it'll come back at around $8/shirt. That would settle it. I'd take that plunge right now. Plus with the added bonus of working and supporting local business is ideal.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Getting Up-To-Date

First, what is it Im trying to do here? What is Bflotees? Its a themed t-shirt design and online retail shop that focuses its messaging on the City of Buffalo. All things Buffalo, like architecture, industry, topics of discussion, festivals, sports, etc. The look for the shirts will be somewhere between the quirky hipster to 50's retro.
Here's my first draft mission statement:
1. For to become the t-shirt design people go to when they think Buffalo.
2. To sell Buffalo t-shirts with messaging/artwork that is smarter, more unique and of higher quality than competitors.
3. To get others to say, "cool, where'd ya get that shirt?" when they see one.
Hmmm, thats not quite right but Ill leave it for now.
Ok now that we got that sorted, so far Ive been working on some t-shirt designs and thinking about my next moves. I have the domain name purchased:, and have a prelim logo for it (thats it above). Ive got maybe a dozen ideas created and ready to go.
Im stuck though...
These are my options:
Order sample shirts, take some photos, create a postcard and see if I get orders from stores around town.
Get the website up and running, market to online communities like Buffalo Rising and take pre-orders (offer a discount if they order ahead) This would give me an idea on quantities to order.
Eventually I'd like to screen print my own t-shirts, but I think partnering with a screenprinter right now makes more sense in terms of time-management and overhead.
I do know Im going with American Apparel shirts. They're just the best made shirts out there and they are made in the usa.

Saturday, March 8, 2008


Just throwing out the first ball or fielding a grounder. Warming up.
Anyone out there? Thats the first question I guess.

March Snow

It was hardly a blizzard really, but its nice to get a weekend snow in Buffalo. We got about a foot or so, it clogged up our street a bit and I spent my time outdoors pushing a couple cars out and shoveling the walk. Maybe Frank and I will get out and do some sledding this afternoon.