A Fond Farewell from Clothing of theAmerican Mind


cotamby Caitlin Blue, Founder/Owner Clothing of the American Mind

It is with great sadness and even greater satisfaction that we are retiring Clothing of the American Mind at the end of March. Our work is not done as far as making dissent fashionable and stoking the vitality of democracy with righteous threads, but COTAM leaves us in a much better place than when we started in March 2003.

Back then, the war in Iraq had just begun and Bush was running for re-election seemingly unopposed. We quickly learned that the combination of powerful images and words on a t-shirt can create a dialogue and revitalize democracy. This was true for COTAM t-shirt wearers, just as it was for Barack Obama, whose election was aided tremendously by Shepard Fairey’s HOPE and PROGRESS posters and stickers.


Clothing of the American Mind has had 5 great years bobbing in the moral morass of our previous administration. What was originally a manifestation of outrage at a protest against the start of the second Iraq War turned into a thriving company that walked the talk when we became a fully green business in 2005, only one short year after our inception. We have been thrilled to meet so many people at the countless protests, eco & trade shows, street fairs, registering voters, driving across country in a COTAM RV, in the store and on-line who believed in our mission to responsibly articulate, promote and sponsor progressive democratic values, candidates and causes.

After the birth of my child in 2006, Carly Miller and Matthew Gerbasi took over and created wonderful partnerships with other organizations that we respect and expanded our retail reach. They worked tirelessly to get COTAM t-shirts to those in need by traveling all over the country to spread graphic messages that people could wear proudly. COTAM has been an amazing project in creating community around the world and amongst several political parties. We hope to live on in your wardrobe, your minds and your hearts.

Thank you for a wonderful journey and for helping to restore our faith in the integrity of democracy. We will continue to sell shirts online and at the LA anti-war protest on Saturday, March 21, 2009 (check out our new discounted pricing!). We plan on closing up by March 31st and will keep you posted if we are moved to make limited edition t-shirts that we can sell guerilla-style, either online or in person. We also hope to live on in the partnerships and t-shirt collections we’ve created for our favorite non-profits, such as the ACLU and Unscrew America. 

With your help throughout these last five years we raised nearly $100,000, donated thousands of shirts to those in need and gave those with political savvy the fashion to back it up.  We will be forever grateful to our supporters and customers who made all of this possible.

Keep dissenting in style,


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