The countdown has begun in earnest! We are now only two weeks away from the unveiling of The Shirt 2016 on April 15th. At this juncture, we wanted to let you in on how The Shirt comes to be.
Preparations begin in October, when the new Shirt Committee is formed. Once that is determined, the Committee considers which vendors will produce The Shirt for that year. After listening to pitches from various companies, in November the Committee chose Alta Gracia to be this year’s vendor.
Once the vendor is decided, picking a color is the next item on the agenda. This can be a complicated and, from time to time, divisive process for the Committee. Past colors are noted, as well as how certain types of prints will appear on potential options. After weeks of deliberation, the final color is selected. (Spoiler alert: this year’s color is the best yet.)
The Shirt Committee is composed of several different teams: marketing, unveiling preparation, alumni relations, social media, public relations and design. Once the color of The Shirt is determined by the entire Committee, the teams break up and complete their jobs.
The marketing team seeks to advertise The Shirt and the unveiling ceremony in various publications, while the unveiling group organizes the logistics, such as the speaker and venue, of the unveiling ceremony itself.
The alumni relations team reaches out to graduates of the University of Notre Dame, and the social media team runs the various accounts (@theshirtND on Twitter, @theshirtnd on Instagram, and The Shirt ND page on Facebook) of The Shirt Committee.
The public relations team is tasked with outputting information to the Notre Dame community via radio and television interviews and, of course, this world-class blog. Many reports from unnamed sources allege that the public relations team turned down jobs at national news outlets after this year’s inaugural post, but the authors of this blog cannot comment on the veracity of these claims.
The final team is the design team, those responsible for the renowned graphics on the front and back of The Shirt each year. This team works to ensure that the design for each year meshes well with the color of The Shirt, and, with so many delighted purchasers of The Shirt each year, this team never fails to succeed. (Another spoiler alert: this year’s is also the best yet.)