American Apparel makes plain t-shirts, long sleeve shirts, hooded sweatshirts, pants, underwear, swimwear, etc. They are self-proclaimed as “sweatshop free”, manufacturing everything in downtown LA. They recycle thousands of tons of fabric each year, and all workers have access to cheap healthcare, massage and yoga facilities, and receive an hourly wage around $12. Last year they made $250 million, and in seven years, have opened nearly 30 retail stores worldwide, although they sell a large quantity of goods online direct from their website or to other small businesses that use AA shirts as canvas for their own designs.
All this aside, they make great shirts. The fabric is extremely soft, the stitching is clean and durable, and they’re cut to fit – no cookie-cutter beefy T’s with scratchy labels. You won’t have to go out of your way to pay for their threads either: t-shirts sell for $15-25, collared shirts for around $40.
Oneoff Clothing is one aforementioned small business, whose innovative approach allows you to customize AA swag yourself, giving you choice of garment, color, and design. They also resell many (but not all) AA products unadorned, passing along at least a portion of their wholesale discount. Most notable in my opinion are the plain t-shirts for $10 ($5 less than direct from AA, and a substantial savings if you’re looking to fill out your wardrobe).
I’ve been hearing and reading about them for a couple years now, but only recently purchased a couple shirts myself, and was very satisfied (their sizes run small though, I should have ordered mediums). A few have questioned their seemingly spotless business ethic, but in the end no one disagrees on their quality: