Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Shoppers’ T-shirt sensation

A new fashion craze is sweeping Britain’s high streets and shopping centres – the “instructional T-shirt”. The shirts feature a range of messages or explanations for shop assistants so that they do not unduly disturb frustrated shoppers. The messages include ‘I do not want your store card’ or ‘No, I don’t have your loyalty card’.

“I have been struggling to keep up with demand,” said Gillian Billingsworth who created the T-shirts. “It seems we have really resonated with the frustrations of consumers.”

“They are great, aren’t they?” said Jeff, from Kent, on a visit to the Bluewater shopping mall. “I keep mine in the car and use it when I go on a long day’s shopping,” he explained. “I had one of the basic, single message, shirts but got another one with several slogans on them. It was also the only one in the range with ‘I do not want an extended warranty’ on the back.”

Shoppers say that it is nice not to have to answer the same irritating question at every till and privately shop assistants are relieved to be able to target their pimping at those more susceptible.

In an ironic twist, Ms Billingsworth was today celebrating a distribution deal with the Tesco supermarket chain. “This is an official deal, “ she explained. “Some of the other big UK retailers have been shipping shirts directly from our suppliers in the Far East. Of course we don’t approve of the grey imports, but all business is good business”.

A spokesman for Sainsbury’s refuted the grey import accusation. “We have them in a range of colours,” he said. “What is more we are also offering triple nectar points on all sizes of the ‘I don’t have a loyalty card’ line.

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