Been There. Had Enough of That. Made the T-shirt!
by Wendy R. Khabie
For decades, the t-shirt has been a popular vehicle of expression. In fact, you can tell a lot about someone's taste in music, political affiliation, and religious beliefs by simply reading the words written across their chest.
And it's not just adults who are wearing it on their sleeve. Pop into any children's clothing store, or a major retailer and you are likely to see kids' clothing emblazoned with messages such as "Stunt Man in Training" or "Drama Queen." But some of what is printed on clothing intended for the little ones isn't always so whimsical, and the messages can be inappropriate or make insulting references to adults, like "I cry when ugly people hold me."
This was so disturbing for one mother of four young children that she decided to be the change she wanted to see in the world. Audrey Weitz founded SpeakNicely.com, a company that produces and sells clothing, knapsacks, and friendship bands for youngsters with messages that include, "Say Nice Things," "Honor People," and "I Am The Future."
"In my own search for children's clothes, I am amazed by how our culture invites us to use our children to inappropriately promote companies, or worse to spread messages that can be hurtful to others," says Weitz. "I developed this line to help build up our children. We need to give them the opportunity to use words to make their own little worlds, as well as the grander one, a more beautiful and peaceful place to live."
The goal of SpeakNicely is to empower parents and children by exposing them to and helping them spread positive messages. "With some simple words like 'Seek Good,' we can all work to make the world a better," says Weitz.
Imagine walking down the street and seeing a little girl in a shirt that reads "A Smile is Good" instead of one that says "I'm Cuter Than You" or a little boy sporting one that says "Share Your Power" instead of "My Dad Makes More $$$ Than Yours."
Schools and day camps across the country are embracing SpeakNicely's messages and they've placed orders for friendship bands and t-shirts. Recently, SpeakNicely was featured in a children's fashion show on NBC's Today show.
"We have the ability to teach our children how powerful words can be," says Weitz. "If we teach them to use their words well, they will be our beacons of light."
All Momtalk.com readers receive free shipping on their speaknicely.com orders. Just enter "momtalk" as your coupon code.
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