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7 Best Geek T-Shirt Stores on the Web (Besides Us)


One of the most popular t-shirt categories nowadays is geek t-shirts.  These t-shirts display designs inspired by different slices of geek culture, including science, technology, the humanities, science fiction, fantasy, video gaming, and comic books.  

Geek t-shirts are pretty much the flagship product of Digital Wave Surf Shop.  Our t-shirts stake out the technology aspect of geek culture, or more specifically internet and computer technology. They are targeted towards internet and computer geeks living a digital lifestyle, distinguishing themselves even further in the way that they use the metaphor of internet surfing to represent that lifestyle.  As a matter of fact, we believe that our t-shirts should appeal to a wider audience because in a way we are all internet and computer geeks, who on a daily basis surf the internet and use mobile apps for productivity, staying informed, and entertainment.

As proud as we are of our t-shirts, there are several other online geek t-shirt stores that sell really cool geek t-shirts with designs based on other aspects of geek culture.  If you're a fan of geek t-shirts, we would like to recommend some of these other stores to you.

Why would we bring attention to other geek t-shirt stores that could be considered our competitors? 

First of all, we're not exactly a stock exchange-listed company. Those kinds of companies have to worry about every sale that could affect their bottom lines and appeasing shareholders. 

Second, in contrast to other industries, losing sales to competitors is not as big of an issue in the t-shirt industry. When it comes to items in other industries, especially big ticket items like cars or home appliances, shoppers may have to limit themselves to one or two at a time. But when it comes to t-shirts, shoppers usually buy as many as they want.

Third, we don't really consider these other stores our direct competitors.  Geek culture is very diverse, and t-shirts depicting concepts from different areas of that culture vary widely.  While there may be a t-shirt store or two online that targets internet and computer geeks, no store uses the metaphor of internet surfing to define their business like we do.  We are the internet's first surf shop for internet surfers, so far without rival. 

Finally, it is part of the surf shop ethos to provide advice and information. If you came to Digital Wave Surf Shop looking for geek t-shirts and didn't find anything you liked here, we want to help you find something that you will like.  So here's a list of what we consider to be the 7 best geek t-shirt stores on the web, besides us of course.

1.  Out of Print Clothing

Humanities geeks, or more specifically literature geeks, should be really excited by the selection of t-shirts offered by Out of Print Clothing.  This store specializes in t-shirts displaying classic book covers, most of which are out of print (the covers, not the books.)  

Offering men's, women's, kids', and babies' styles, you'll find t-shirts with out of print covers from books such as Moby Dick, The Great Gatsby, The Call of the Wild, The Sun Also Rises, Slaughterhouse-Five, Catch-22, On the Road, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and more.  On the kids' and babies' styles, you'll find covers from classic children's books, such as The Hungry Caterpillar, Stuart Little, and Charlotte's Web.

T-shirt prices are a little on the high side in the high $20 range (kids' and babies' styles in the low $20s), but the t-shirt quality is also high, both in terms of the printing and t-shirt blank.  The t-shirts are screen printed, and the printed designs have a remarkably soft "hand" (t-shirt lingo for the degree to which the printed design can be distinguished from the fabric) considering the printing technique.  The t-shirt blanks are stylish, soft, and light.  You'll also get a kick out of the brand tags, which look like old school library cards.

2.   SuperHeroStuff

Comic book geeks should rejoice when they come across this geek t-shirt store.  It has a massive selection of t-shirts featuring comic book heroes, mostly from the D.C. and Marvel universes, but also from a few independent comic book series.

Of course, they'll find t-shirts featuring popular heroes like Superman, Batman, Spider-Man, Captain America, Daredevil, Green Lantern, the Flash, the Hulk, Iron Man, and Wonder Woman as well as popular superhero teams like the Avengers, Justice League, and X-Men.  But they'll also discover heroes with smaller, but loyal, fan bases, such as Ant-Man, the Punisher, Green Arrow, Silver Surfer, Hawkeye, Nightwing, and Ghost Rider, to name just a few.  Heroes from independent comic book series include Battlepug, Hack Slash, and the Watchmen.

Since this store sources their t-shirts from multiple vendors, the printing techniques for the t-shirts vary.  For the most part, they are printed either by screen printing or heat transfer.  The t-shirt blanks also vary.  In general, they are either those form-fitting, soft, 4+ oz/square yard combed cotton kind of t-shirts or unisex, thick, 6+ oz/square yard jersey cotton ones.  In other words, for those familiar with t-shirt brands, the difference is kind of like the difference between an American Apparel 2001 model and a Gildan Ultra Cotton model.

You can tell if the t-shirt is a stylish, soft, and light one if it says "30 Single" (a reference to cotton thread thickness) in the title, as in "Captain America Winter Soldier 30 Single T-Shirt."  If you want to be sure, you can call the store's number listed on its website to ask for details, and you'll usually be able to speak directly with a store employee.

3.  NerdKungFu

NerdKungFu is an eclectic geek t-shirt store, but its deepest selections are in the science fiction and comic book genres.   Although its science fiction t-shirt selection is wide, including at least a couple of t-shirts from any particular sci-fi subject, it has the most t-shirts featuring designs from Star Trek, Star Wars, Firefly, and Doctor Who.  Its comic book t-shirt selection includes the usual suspects from the D.C. and Marvel universes.

This store also carries a lot of t-shirts that are not necessarily geek t-shirts with designs inspired by cult movies and t.v. shows, cartoons, and musical artists.  Rather than use its left sidebar navigation menu, the best way to scan its t-shirt inventory is to go to the right sidebar, scroll down to the "Nerd Genre" gadget, and select "View all Nerd Genres."  Every geek subject for which it has t-shirts will be conveniently displayed in alphabetical order.

Like SuperHeroStuff, this store buys its t-shirts wholesale (though they do have a small selection of original geek t-shirts, mostly geek humor.)  As a result, the printing technique and blank for each t-shirt varies.  In terms of printing, some t-shirts are printed by heat transfer (typically the dark), but some are screen printed (typically the white.)  As for the blanks, the product descriptions usually reveal blank brand and thread details, but not cotton weight (like 4+ oz vs. 6+ oz) or brand model (like Gildan Ultra Cotton vs. Gildan Heavy Cotton.)

If you want more specific details, you can call the customer service number listed on its website.  You'll usually speak to the owner himself, Dave Inman, who is also editor of  TheNerdBlog, a blog of mostly geek movie and television show reviews.  He is very polite and offers his personal guarantee of customer satisfaction.  You might even get a coupon code.

4.  Neatoshop

Neatoshop is the ecommerce side of Neatorama, a blog that is part geek culture blog, part internet curation blog, which collects "...the neatest, weirdest, and most wonderful stuff from all over the web."  Neatoshop's merchandise is as diverse as the interests of its parent blog, featuring apparel, accessories, gadgets, kitchenware, houseware, office supplies, toys, and other miscellaneous geek gifts and trinkets.  But its priority is geek t-shirts, as evidenced by its top billing in its left product navigation menu.

Neatoshop's geek t-shirts span a variety of geek interests, including science, sci-fi, fantasy, video gaming, and comic books.  It even has a geek humor category, which itself spans multiple geek interests.  

Interestingly, all of the t-shirt designs are from independent graphic artists who have submitted their design ideas to Neatoshop, which prints and sells them.  Because many of the designs are finely detailed, i.e., graphically complex, it makes sense for them to be digitally printed.  They have the same hand as t-shirts printed by heat transfer, which is to say noticeable, but smooth.

The blanks the shop uses to print its t-shirts vary.  Generally speaking, they either use form-fitting, soft, 4+ oz combed cotton blanks from American Apparel and Next Level or unisex, thick, 6+ oz jersey cotton blanks from Gildan, Hanes, or Port & Co.  You have some say in the blank they use in terms of fit, feel, and weight, if not in terms of brand, when you select the t-shirt style on each product page.  Selecting "Ringspun T-shirt" will get you the more stylish, softer, and lighter blank, and every other selection will get you the unisex, thicker, and heavier one.

If you have questions, there is a customer service number on its website.  Your call will likely be answered by a store employee.

5.  Splitreason

Splitreason is a geek t-shirt store catering primarily to video gaming geeks, but it also carries t-shirts that should appeal to science fiction and comic book geeks.  Some of its t-shirt designs are the creations of its staff, but most of them are from independent graphic designers who have submitted their design ideas and won enough acclaim from website visitors.  

Many of the t-shirt designs feature video game characters re-imagined in contexts other than their video game worlds.  Also, for better or worse, many of the characters have a cartoonish, video game look along the lines of Sonic the Hedgehog.  By no means, however, is this true of all its designs.  In fact, all of its designs are strikingly original and eye-catching.

For the most part, the t-shirt blanks used by Splitreason are the more stylish, soft, and light kinds from American Apparel, Alstyle Apparel & Activewear, and Gildan.  They are also screen printed at a high level of quality.  In fact, the Splitreason staff is so skilled at screen printing that it sometimes prints and sells the designs of other companies that would rather license their t-shirt designs than print and sell them themselves.

Getting in contact with the Splitreason staff to ask questions can be a little difficult in that they only respond to inquires submitted through an online form.  They usually get back to you in a couple of days, but they do respond thoroughly.

6.  Jinx

Similar to Splitreason, Jinx is another geek t-shirt store that targets video gaming geeks, except its t-shirt designs are almost exclusively inspired by video games.  Most of its designs are created in-house by the Jinx staff, but it sometimes sells designs submitted by independent graphic designers.

Most of its t-shirt designs are largely literal depictions of symbols, characters, and scenes from popular video game titles.  You'll find t-shirts with designs based on World of Warcraft, Minecraft, Titanfall, Diablo, and Call of Duty, to name just a few.  For nostalgic video gaming geeks, there are also several retro designs based on popular video games from the past, like Asteroids, Centipede, Pac-Man, and Sonic the Hedgehog, as well as popular video game companies, like Atari.

While Jinx designs its own t-shirts, it farms out the printing to outside companies.  The t-shirts are screen printed.  It doesn't rely on any particular blank brand, instead offering customers a choice between "premium" and "basic" t-shirts.  Premium t-shirts are more form-fitting, soft, and light, and basic t-shirts are more unisex, thick, and heavy.

There is a customer service number listed on its website you can call if you have any questions.  A pre-recorded, robotic-voiced operator answers all incoming calls first, which is kind of entertaining, but you'll quickly be put in contact with "a human in the customer service department."

7.  ThinkGeek

Most geek t-shirt fans have heard of ThinkGeek.  It is the leading online geek store for geek merchandise, including apparel, accessories, gadgets, kitchenware, houseware, office supplies, toys, and all sorts of geek gifts and trinkets.  But its most popular product line is most likely geek t-shirts, as suggested by its top billing in the left product navigation menu.

ThinkGeek offers geek t-shirts from a variety of geek interests, but it has the deepest selection in science fiction, fantasy, and video game interests.  Most of its t-shirts are sourced from outside vendors, though it occasionally creates its own designs or accepts design ideas from independent graphic designers and prints them in-house.

Most of its dark t-shirts are printed via heat transfer and its white t-shirts are screen printed.  The t-shirt blanks vary.  If they come from outside vendors, it's likely to be a unisex, thick, and heavy cotton t-shirt.  If it's printed in-house, it's likely to be a form-fitting, soft, and light cotton t-shirt.

Despite being the top online geek store, ThinkGeek's site could use some improvement.  There are no interest sub-menus under the t-shirt menu tab, so it is harder to find geek t-shirts by interest than it should be.  You can shop by interest using a tab in the top navigation menu, but the results page displays merchandise from all product categories with t-shirts obscured in the mix.

If you have any questions, ThinkGeek has both a live chat feature and a customer service phone number.  You should be able to get your specific product questions answered quickly.

So there you have it.  7 other geek t-shirt stores besides us for purchasing the very best geek t-shirts on the web.  Hopefully, you'll buy from us, but if not, it pleases us to know we may have helped you find what you were looking for, just like any good surf shop would do.

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