Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Customized Software

I work in the IT department of a large consumer goods company The department has several off site meetings each year to celebrate our accomplishments. They are nice uplifting events with good food, recognition awards, prizes etc. Typically the dress code is business casual. We had one of these meetings last week. Someone on the event planning committee (I’ll bet they were male and under 25 years of age) decided it would be nice to have casual dress, and to distribute a "one size fits all" white T shirts to all department members, and require it be worn to the event. We were even given suggestions on what to wear with it:

 Shorts – Bermuda-style, golf shorts
 Pants – Khaki, capri, jeans
 Shoes – Loafers, deck shoes, canvas, athletic shoes, sandals

I wasn't the only female in the dept. that expressed dissatisfaction with the dress code. We had a lively lunch discussion on ways to make the T shirt more attractive; tuck it in, belt it, or tie it to one side. I really don’t like this style of T shirt even when it is free. It is unflattering. I won’t even sleep in T shirts like this. I will wear them for work related community service events. Activities like building houses with Habitat for Humanity or replanting city parks. But I donate the free shirts to charity after the event. It seems a bit wasteful. I decided I wasn’t going to wear a big white shapeless T shirt to the off site meeting. I would wear the T shirt, but it would be "refashioned". I also wanted to make a wearable muslin copy of a RTW T-shirt, so I decided to ”kill two birds with one stone”. Here is the RTW T shirt, bought for a few dollars at Walmart I believe.
The color was dreary, the knit fabric thin and cheap, but I liked the styling. So I took it apart, laid the fabric pieces on paper and traced around them to make a pattern. I used the pattern to cut the pieces out of the big white T shirt, making sure the motifs would be in relatively the same location on the refashioned T Shirt. I think the results is a lot more attractive than the original. When asked by my coworkers "What did you do to your shirt?" I replied that "I did some software customization." Most of them got the joke.

I was so pleased with the results of my software customization, I actually plan to wear it on weekends around the house.

And here is another, non logo, version of the same T shirt made of a rayon lycra knit from Fabric.com.