Spreadshirt Inc. Spares Frat From Dressing Like Girly Men

Alvin’s sweatshirt order for his fraternity turned out a little too shimmery and girly. Alvin was solely responsible for the decision to order the “silver flex” font, and Spreadshirt could have easily told him that all sales were final. Instead, they reprinted the order for free.

Alvin writes:

I wanted to praise an online company that I happened to order custom printed apparel from. Spreadshirt Inc.or spreadshirt.com is one of many online services that customize shirts for a low price. I have used many of these sites because I graphic design on the side and enjoy putting some of my work on the clothes I wear. I want to let you know of the numerous sites I have used Spreadshirt has shown the greatest consideration of their customers. I made a mistake of getting one of my designs in a “silver” flex print which really ended up being a glittery reflective print. It made my fraternity letters look, lets say less manly. It was at my bad judgment but they were more than willing to redo it for me at no charge. I called them and left a message the night before and I am happy they were willing to call me back the next day. Hopefully, someone would recognize this great company too.

Nice work Spreadshirt! As for Alvin, we think his frat’s pledge class would look just fab in the original sweatshirts.


Edit Your Comment

  1. thelushie says:

    Awww, I think it is pretty!

  2. nequam says:

    I believe the appropriate word is “fabulous.”

  3. Parting says:

    You should have bought them, placed another order, and the auctioned ”girly” edition to fraternity members girlfriends :)

  4. cmcd14 says:

    @nequam: I believe the real appropriate word is “fierce.”

  5. primo.avanti says:

    @Victo: typically girlfriends are not permitted to wear letters though im sure that varies from fraternity to fraternity. I know mine didnt really approve of it.
    on a side note, after this post I am glad to say I actually work for Spreadshirt.com and can confirm that our policies are some of the best in the industry. give it all a look at http://www.spreadshirt.com

  6. primo.avanti says:

    @Victo: typically fraternities frown upon girlfriends or non-fraternity members wearing their letters, I know mine did.

    on a side note, after this post i’m glad to say that i actually work for Spreadshirt.com and, without blowing too much smoke up my own ass, i can confirm that our policies regarding things like this are some of the best in the industry. Give it all a look at http://www.spreadshirt.com

  7. DeafLEGO says:

    REAL men wear pink.

    Homophobia idiot is all he is.

  8. thelushie says:

    @DeafLEGO: They were not pink but sparkly. Glittery.

  9. SOhp101 says:

    @DeafLEGO: I don’t think not willing to wear something glittery makes me homophobic–it just doesn’t go well with my complexion.

  10. Pink Puppet says:

    @DeafLEGO: How is a fundamental dislike of such fabulous lettering homophobic? I’m not getting the vibe there, even plenty of queer guys don’t necessarily want to get caught in clothes they consider unmanly.

  11. Trai_Dep says:

    Remember kids, quaff at least two beers before engaging in sloppy frat-brother mutual oral man-staff pleasuring. That way you can both give a sigh of relief while blaming the booze!
    For the more advanced sexual maneuvers furtively – yet manfully – completed in the gang showers, do what navies since time immemorial have done: blame dropped soap!

    PS: did they ship a sampler of ecstasy pills with those shirts? If so, that is customer service!

  12. BuddyGuyMontag says:

    @Trai_Dep: I think you’re confusing X with GHB.

  13. homerjay says:

    After a cursory look at spreadshirt.com I can understand why he had trouble with the color. Unless he ordered “Silver Glitter” or one of those specialty colors, the colors need improved descriptions. The terms Flex and Flock are foreign to anyone outside of the printing business.

    Still, I think they look so super, thanks for asking!

  14. That was really nice of the company! As the former song and spirit chair of my Greek organization, ordering apparel was one of my chief responsibilities and some of the customer service out there is wretched.

  15. mantari says:

    @Trai_Dep: You have an advanced understanding of the mechanics of the situation. Indeed, the difference between a gay boy and a frat boy is… only a few beers.

    I remember telling this to a frat guy. The next time he saw me, he said, “You know, last time I was here, you said something that was amazingly true, but I forgot what it was.” I said, “What, about beer turning frat guys into gay guys?”

    He quickly shut up, as he looked towards his girlfriend to see if she overheard.

  16. Sonnymooks says:


    Thank God you didn’t say the only difference between a girl saying no and a girl saying yes is only a few beers.

  17. @cmcd14:

    I’m so glad I got that!

  18. cde says:

    @DeafLEGO: So its homophobic to not like pink? How fucking retarded are you?

  19. @primo.avanti: good to know. I’m trying to run my dad’s silk screening biz, and we’ve got too much work!

  20. dh86sj says:

    Sorry to see all those comments about frat guys being gay. Nothing like broad generalizations to prove your e-superiority! 85% percent of Fortune 500 executives are Greek. All but two U.S. presidents since 1825 have been Greek. 76% of all U.S. Senators and Congressmen are Greek. I’m not saying that Greek life is for everyone, but deriding Greeks on a non-factual basis is pure ignorance.

    Getting shirts printed in college pretty much sucks. Everyone near campus is really expensive (mostly because they throw the screen fee in at the last minute), and most of the time on the internet you get destroyed on shipping. If anyone needs shot glasses or mugs made I would look at [customglassware.com] I had a positive experience with them the last time I had shot glasses made.

  21. erica.blog says:

    Wow, very nice, Spreadshirt.

    @dh86sj: I’m not sure how “gay” and “Fortune 500 excutive or elected representative” are mutually exclusive, or how you defended the hetero-nature of fraternity brothers (some of whom are gay).

  22. macdude22 says:

    Luckily I’m actually Greek so I get to use any combo of letters in the Greek Alphabet. I’ll wear whatever combo whenever, I prefer the combo Beta Omega Beta. BOB. Let’s go out with the BOB guys.

  23. StevieD says:


    Or $10.

    Yes, $10. That is all she wanted. It was a poor neighborhood and it was a long time ago. I only had $5.

  24. Altdotweb says:

    Would they have done the same if he ordered 100?

  25. Crazytree says:

    @dh86sj: by greek do you mean “participated in anal sex”?

  26. redkamel says:

    all the greek guys I knew were lame and paid a monthly fee to have friends, parties, and meet girls, I mean, join a frat.

    Actually pink WAS cool, till all the frat guys started wearing it in the most obnoxious shades to show how “bold”/”funny” they were. Kinda like aviator glasses. And trucker hats.

    and, to comment on the story, they should have kept the glitter. Its actually pretty sweet, and would have made a good conversation piece/story.

  27. humphrmi says:

    @Crazytree: LOL, I thought he/she was saying that all those people came from Greece. With such a high business success rate, I was about to send my kids there. Good thing I didn’t.

  28. penarestel says:

    Frats are overrated. All they do is make you pay X amount of dollars to join a glorified drinking club. One guy that tried to draft (is that what they call it?) me into his frat said it would be $300 just to get in.

    Needless to say I turned him down.

  29. gStein_*|bringing starpipe back|* says:

    @macdude22: luckily i couldn’t care less, so i wear whatever i want on my shirts, whenever i want.

  30. penarestel says:

    @dh86sj: “85% percent of Fortune 500 executives are Greek. All but two U.S. presidents since 1825 have been Greek. 76% of all U.S. Senators and Congressmen are Greek.”

    And this country keeps on tanking. If being Greek is so great then why does everything suck?

  31. TechnoDestructo says:


    I blame Halo.

  32. PhiPsiINTheta2 says:

    As a Phi Psi I’d like to thank SpreadShirt for helping out some of our brothers…We’re not always stereotypical “frat guys” regardless of what people think…I think I’ll have my chapter look into this company in the future…also, if there are girls that help out with the fraternity (house moms, girlfriends, etc.) they usually get the designation of fraternity “sweetheart”, and can sometimes wear letters just fyi…

  33. Trai_Dep says:

    @TechnoDestructo: …and men not wearing enough glitter.

  34. Concerned_Citizen says:

    Very sad Consumerist, very sad. I don’t understand why a company should bail out a dumb fraternity guy who ordered the wrong thing. This isn’t anything extraordinary or special. The fraternity T-shirt business is cutthroat. You either service a fraternity and make them happy or lose them forever. Not all people living at a fraternity are willing to buy your shirts in exchange for a back rub.

  35. mmbb says:

    Wow, this thread really brought out the townies and dormies and frat-wannabes/bashers, didn’t it?

    You go, Jock… I’m a stoner. Wha?

  36. Jesse Pink says:

    Amazing the ignorance in this thread about fraternity folks. I used to be anti-fraternity…until I joined one my junior year in college. I had met a number of friends casually/through class that turned out to be Greek, and eventually they asked me to join and I did. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that not only was their GPA average higher than that of the both the overall and men’s average at my school, it was actually LESS expensive to pay to live in the house and eat in the house than it was to buy a meal plan and live in the dorms.

    Its my opinion that the dorms are just another “fraternity” without the organization. I know my freshman year my floor was basically my first group of friends. How is that different than a fraternity?

  37. cromartie says:

    How is that different than a fraternity?

    No blind groupthink centered around really weak assertions of false superiority?

    You didn’t actually have to pay for people to be friends with you?

    No anal sex with fellow same sex floormates?

    No bukkake on the donut contests?

    No lack of self esteem assuaged by paying for friends, rather than making them due to proximity based on, say legitimate commonalities in personality?

  38. ophmarketing says:

    Regarding the comment above about girlfriends “not being able” to wear frat letters…exactly who would stop them? I can put whatever I want on a shirt. And I can give my shirts to whoever I want.

  39. ophmarketing says:

    @cromartie: Well, BESIDES groupthink based on false superiority, paying for friends, anal sex with floormates, bukkake on the donut contests, and assuaging one’s lack of self esteem…what have the Romans ever done for us?

  40. RandomHookup says:

    @dh86sj: Actually the anti-Greek rhetoric was pretty calm (though it got a little worse after your post), but I’m tired of these same stats trotted out again and again. At least we didn’t get the stats on community service and alumni giving, too.

    I’m a former national office of one of the bigger Greek letter fraternities and I find that info only vaguely interesting and indicative of not much of anything. Almost any group can expect to be made fun of in a public forum. The “omg, they are so gay” jokes will be made about sailors, women’s encounter groups, prisoners, cowboys and jocks, too.

  41. AWESOME. I love it when a company does right by their customers and gets rewarded, directly, for it. As Spreadshirt will be — both my boy and I were looking for a T-shirt printer after GoodStorm turned into another tentacle of the dreaded Zazzle…and we’re definitely going with Spreadshirt because of this incident. Good job, guys! Good job, Internet! Good job, capitalism!

  42. ClayS says:

    @Mary Marsala with Fries:
    Mary, you seem to be straying from the topic at hand. The discussion is not about the original post concerning the tshirt company, but rather the pros and cons of frats and the apparent abundance of gay sex which their members allegedly enjoy.

  43. kable2 says:

    Normal guys do not want people thinking they are gay. This is a fact. I am not trying to piss anyone off, just stating what everyone is thinking.

    /I bet he was not too popular at the frat when they saw what he ordered lol

  44. Ugh, the attitudes about the Greek community are so unnecessarily nasty. I really, legitimately, want to know what Greeks did to posters like cromartie.

    Also, I think some of these posters are revealing their own homophobic biases. Why is the first thing that comes to mind when you think of as fraternity a raging closet homosexual? Also, I know many Greeks who are gay, several of whom are out to their brothers. At least one, I’m pretty sure, felt more comfortable coming out to the men he considered closest to him, than to anyone else. He knew they wouldn’t judge because they already loved him as a brother.

    The paying for your friends thing is a joke. I’ve been on the executive board of my sorority and see where the dollars go. It’s not cheap to go Greek, but there are scholarships, and a lot of the money goes for the kind of programming you don’t have access to with your regular group of friends. You know how people always talk about group discounts, or wanting to do something but you need x amount of people to do it? Greeks already have x amount of people. It’s easier to raise money for philanthropies or to do community service work together also.

  45. jhuang says:

    @generalhousewifery: Agreed. I’m treasurer of my sorority and know exactly where all the money goes, and everything has a purpose and benefits every sister in the long run.

  46. Antediluvian says:

    @kable2: How you doin’?

  47. ffmariners says:

    I used to hang out with a frat that one of my friends from freshman year joined.

    In re: to whoever said they have higher GPAs… they also have filing cabinets with all past assignments/exams filed by the class. They collect these over the years as the brothers move through and do different classes. This might not be true for all Greeks, but it is for some.

    I stopped hanging out there after I went over one night and they were shit faced throwing darts at each others bare asses.

    Real cool.

  48. charmling says:

    @primo.avanti: At my college, fraternities would allow girlfriends to wear letters, but only if they were very serious. It was kind of like a pre-engagement. Sororities would do that with boyfriends, too.

    @macdude22: Actually, that would be Beta Omicron Beta. Omega looks like a horseshoe (kind of), not an O

  49. @ffmariners: That doesn’t even sound real.

    Actually, it sort of does. It sound like the kind of asinine behavior I’ve seen pretty much any group of adolescent boys do.

    The filing cabinets of papers are kind of an insidious myth. Oh, I am sure it exists in some really established fraternities, but the academic honest policy at my university is so strict that that sort of nonsense doesn’t really fly. I do have to say that being in a sorority does provide access to study guides (from sisters who’ve taken a class before) and extra help; it’s nice to have an art history major help you with the paper you’re writing for that elective you took on a lark. There’s also more support-there are always people to go to the library with and commiserate with about papers and work. Every week we award the title of Scholar of the Week to a sister, which is fun and encouraging. Sometimes I can buy texts and coursepacks off of a sister who recently took the course (or she’ll give them away). But no, we don’t have a filing cabinet of papers and tests, and none of the fraternities I am familiar with on campus have something like that either.

  50. nuton2wheels says:

    Greek life is great for rejects whose vapid personalities and lack of ethics make it difficult to declare an identity outside a group of purchased friends.

    Sure, frat boys run our corporations and the government, LOOK AT THE GREAT JOB THEY’VE DONE. It’s nothing more than a system of entry into an “old boys network” by paying dues and participating in stupid initiation rituals. After all, there’s no better way to learn the white collar ropes than by cheating through college. I remember how those frat boy jerk offs would find every excuse to avoid doing work while bragging about their frat house’s “filing cabinets” of old tests and quizzes when I got stuck doing group projects with them in college. There’s nothing better than getting hired based on ass kissing skills and some stupid letters you wore rather than actual qualifications.

    I take consolation in knowing those jerk offs wouldn’t survive a day in my blue collar ranks.

  51. The Bambino says:


    And if the profs are lazy enough to hand out the same test semester after semester, why WOULDN’T you keep old tests on file? Sounds like common sense to me.

  52. cabinaero says:

    About half the replies in here sound like they’re either marketing for Spreadshirt or the greek community. Even “Alvin’s” original submission sounds like a presser…

  53. nuton2wheels says:

    Quote: “I do have to say that being in a sorority does provide access to study guides (from sisters who’ve taken a class before) and extra help”

    It’s called “make friends in your classes instead of being a greek snot if you really need that extra pat on the ass to get by”

    Quote: “There’s also more support-there are always people to go to the library with and commiserate with about papers and work.”

    Do you always need somebody to hold your hand?

    Quote: “Every week we award the title of Scholar of the Week to a sister, which is fun and encouraging.”

    I don’t need to be told that I’m smart… I know :)

  54. nuton2wheels says:

    @The Bambino: Yeah, we’re all fully aware that college is a sham, but I know I’m a better person for earning the honors I graduated with.

  55. The Bambino says:


    I wouldn’t go as far to call college a sham (also earned my grades in college) but I certainly wouldn’t blame someone who reviewed old tests in preparation for an exam. Seems reasonable enough to me.

  56. GOKOR says:

    @The Bambino: Yet, every day employers hire the wrong person because they look for a piece of paper to tell them who to hire rather than actually taking the time to find out who is actually right for the job.

    College is an expensive piece of paper that tells people you “studied” something, not that you actually know or understand it.

  57. mantari says:


    “Hey, guise. So, Consumerist is allowing embedded images now?!

    PS: Are said frat boys cute?”

  58. Trai_Dep says:

    In deference to today’s Greeks, I’ve heard that they’re no longer homophobic. They’ve taken efforts to stop discriminating against their GLBT brethren. Chuckles aside, tip of the hat for them working to correct this. :)

  59. P.T.Wheatstraw says:

    Do any of you guys bashing fraternities realize that you’re demonstrating an artificial sense of superiority over people you claim have an artificial sense of superiority?

    I would think that on a site dedicated to actually having the facts and making sound decisions, you guys would have better sense. I guess you just hang around for the “Gotcha” in each thread where the corporations have to eat crow. As is the case with the Greeks, you are missing the point.

  60. P.T.Wheatstraw says:

    Oh, and @nutonwheels:

    I’m also going to go out on a limb and guess you’re not among those who can actually benefit from a college education since you have a hard time grasping logic.

    Case in point:
    1. You accuse the frats of being full of stupid people who simply cheat.
    2. Someone points out “No, actually, we were a bunch of nerds who just did study groups.”
    3. You say “Oh yeah? You need someone to hold your hand then?”

    Your original point is refuted, but you only deflect the conversation into another insult. You need to be careful; your bitterness is showing. It’s not the frat guys’ fault you haven’t been successful, but I can hazard a guess as to the real reason.

  61. President Beeblebrox says:

    Guys in my high school used to order shirts with glittery lettering on them, it was no big deal.

  62. @nuton2wheels: I suppose there really is no pleasing you. It’s really pretty sad that you can’t tell the difference between individuals “needing” someone to hold their hand, and groups of friends having a support system that is unnecessary, but a pleasure. That kind of bitterness doesn’t make you appear smart or world-wise, it’s just a little bit sad.

  63. OPRAH says:

    I’m Alvin and the one who submitted this story. I have no homophobia and am not going to substantiate that by saying I have homosexual friends. I do wear pink and I really didn’t expect a ridiculous hype from some users here on Consumerist. I sincerely thank many of you who didn’t take it for more than what it was- a praise for a good standing company. The few of you that must find some loophole in everything and make all you read into some petty and sadly wrong assumption, please think before you actually speak your opinions. I can’t help but laugh. Thanks Consumerist and again, thank you Spreadshirt Inc!

  64. Klaymen says:

    “I graphic design on the side and enjoy putting some of my work on the clothes I wear.”

    ..and that was the best shirt design he could come up with? Bravo. If he “graphic designs” on the side I feel sorry for some of his clients.

    Props to Spreadshirt Inc. though, it’s always nice to see a company go the extra mile. (Although, the “silver” flex print representation on their site is a FAR CRY from what the final product looks like.)

  65. OPRAH says:


    That is minimalistic. I’m sorry you didn’t realize the purpose of it. I feel sorry you couldn’t put that together yourself.

  66. OPRAH says:



  67. OPRAH says:


    What is wrong with you?

  68. OPRAH says:



  69. OPRAH says:


    I sorry you have so much hatred for people in Greek organizations. It’s sad to see that you make assumptions from stereotypes you think is right.

  70. Klaymen says:

    @OPRAH: No, I don’t believe that’s minimalistic. That is every greek sweatshirt ever made, just rotated 270°. Also, the very fact that you aimed to print it in “silver” takes it pretty much beyond the world of minimalism. I realize the purpose of it, but that doesn’t make it good design. But if I’ve misunderstood the concept behind the piece, feel free to TinyPic a mockup, and I’ll be more than willing to reconsider my comment.

  71. DaoKaioshin says:

    @cromartie: There’s nothing wrong with being gay or being in a fraternity. Don’t be a bigot.

  72. DaoKaioshin says:

    @ffmariners: The filing cabinet thing really depends on how serious a college it is. I know where I go, old exams are released because the professors are required to write, or at least assemble, their own tests, regularly.

    In any case, such questions shouldn’t be any different than what’s been offered on homework or quizzes throughout the interval.

  73. Trai_Dep says:

    @OPRAH: Read further. After the joshing around, I complemented the Greeks. :)

  74. OPRAH says:


    Spreadshirt Inc.or spreadshirt.com is one of many online services that customize shirts for a low price. I have used many of these sites because I graphic design on the side and enjoy putting some of my work on the clothes I wear.

    Then I go to say:

    I want to let you know of the numerous sites I have used Spreadshirt has shown the greatest consideration of their customers.

    I never said this was one of my designs I offered to my clients. If you weren’t so pessimistic you wouldn’t have misunderstood this.

  75. OPRAH says:
  76. jwm1314 says:

    To those who hate fraternities: I don’t blame you, I was in that boat for the longest time. When all the stories you hear are about how the guys participate in bad pledging in processes, drop drugs in girls drinks, and other such things, I made fun of them and stayed away. Of course, then I met my current brothers.

    Say what you want about a drinking cub, we raised the most money of any group in Relay For Life (not just through donations, for those quickly willing to snipe in about that, we also did many many philanthropy events to raise the money), highest GPA on campus of any greek letter fraternity, and more respect for others as people and their own opinions than many organizations or group of friends.

    For OPRAH and PhiPsiINTheta2, thanks for helping stand up for us.


  77. Klaymen says:

    I never said this was one of my designs I offered to my clients.
    I never said it was either. But you designed the shirt did you not? Hopefully you would give the brothers in your fraternity the same quality you give to your clients, and assuming that’s so, the work would be characteristic of your “design” ability.

    This realization led me to say: If he “graphic designs” on the side I feel sorry for some of his clients.
    As in, “if this is representative of his graphic design skills, I feel sorry for his clients.” As I said before, this is bad design. Once again: it is the same design sported by nearly every frat nation-wide, just rotated 270°. I have seen plenty of designs like this. It is nothing new, it is nothing spectacular. Don’t flatter yourself.