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CHICAGO — Threadless—the Chicago-based company that supplies ironic T-shirts for the hipster crowd — has launched a new line called “Twitter Tees.” Each shirt, on sale for $18, bears a tweet such as, “I’m huge on Twitter,” “It’s the messaging system that we didn’t know we needed until we had it,” and “In space, no one can hear you tweet.”


All of which were submitted by various Twitterati, including Xeni Jardin, editor of the blog Boing Boing, and Biz Stone, co-founder of Twitter. But now Threadless, using its typically-democratic “crowd-sourcing” approach to T-shirt design, is inviting the masses to submit their own tweets and vote on others to determine which should be turned into a cool T-shirt. (Go to twitter.threadless.com)


Within the first day of the “Twitter Tees” launch on Tuesday, Threadless received roughly 12,000 submissions and almost 400,000 votes. Submissions included: “You are what you tweet,” “Full tweet ahead,” “Tweet like no one is reading,” and “Twitter: helping manage my ADHD in 140 characters or less.”


Threadless staffers hope to accelerate production and get the winning tweet-shirt up for sale in three weeks, according to Tom Ryan, Threadless CEO. The best ideas, he said, always come from the people.


So tweet on, you huddled masses. Your words — 140 characters or less—have a chance to live on in T-shirt eternity.

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