Foodie T’s and A Food Gal Giveaway

Show your love for kimchi with this bold T-shirt. (Photo courtesy of Flavour Gallery)

You’ve heard of wearing your heart on your sleeve?

Now, you can wear your favorite food on  your torso.

Flavour Gallery, which launched about a month ago, specializes in specialty T-shirts that are all food-oriented.

The shirts, almost all made in Los Angeles, come in men’s and women’s sizes with artsy graphics spelling out “kimchi,” and “Gigi’s Oyster Bar,” as well as designs featuring knives or a hand sprinkling salt.

Recently, I received a sample of a women’s “medium” in the short-sleeve “kimchi” design.  The soft, 100 percent-cotton T is thin like a man’s undershirt. It fits pretty true to size. It’s cut long enough to cover the hips, so it’s perfect for jeans that sit at belly-button level or lower.

How's this for a "sharp'' shirt? (Photo courtesy of Flavour Gallery)

The company also makes scarves, tote bags and memo pads adorned with its distinctive designs.

Prices range from $4 for a memo pad and $20 for a scarf to $28 for a woman’s tank top and $68 for a man’s hoodie.

Contest: One lucky Food Gal reader will win his/her choice of a Flavour Gallery T-shirt, as well as a tote bag and memo book. Entries, limited to those in the continental United States, will be accepted through midnight PST April 23. Winner will be announce April 25.

How to win?

Just tell me about an item of clothing you loved and kept far longer than you should have. Best answer wins.

Here’s my own answer to that question:

“A couple of dresses and skirts that my late-Mom sewed for me decades ago. I’m sure quite a few of them are way too short now or no longer fit me quite like they should. But I just don’t have the heart to part with them. I know the meticulous work that went into them. I remember my Mom spending weekends rummaging through the remnant sales at legendary Britex Fabrics in San Francisco, looking for deals on lovely wool or silk to turn into outfits for herself or me. I remember her cutting out patterns on our dining room table, then hunched over her Singer sewing machine in rapt concentration as she made sure every seam was perfectly straight. Today’s mass-produced clothes are practically disposable. But not these. And I’ll hang on to them as long as I have any inch of space in my closet.”

Ethiopian coffee that gives back to the village it comes from.

Winner of the Previous Contest: In the last Food Gal contest, I asked you to tell me about a good deed or charitable act that you’re proud of doing. The winner will receive a 12-ounce bag of Aleta Wondo coffee beans from Equator Coffees & Teas.

Congrats to: Jennifer Dolan, who wrote, “I live in a very large residential building in New York. In it are mostly young professionals, some young families and many elderly people. You can tell when you see the elderly that they are lonely and yearning to talk to someone. In the winter, or just cold or rainy days, they walk around the main lobby, or sit by the window. When the weather is nicer, they stand around outside the building, walk up and down the sidewalk, and just pass the time. I always stop and talk to them. Some of them seem a little flustered when I do. Some seem reluctant or seem awkward when I engage in conversation but I always make it my mission to break down the barriers. Sometimes they seem to be more receptive when I have my kids with me, so when that opportunity presents itself, I always engage my children in the conversation. Not only do they seem to be more entertained by the young ones, but I feel my kids see that talking with elderly people is not so boring after all. They have wonderful stories to tell about themselves, their families and what it was like when they were younger. I know that once the ice is broken, they never hesitate to stop us (my kids included) to chat when we are passing through the lobby. There is one little old lady, recently, who after many, many months of working on her with eye contact and little smiles, I was able to elicit a “hello” from her when one of my daughters and I passed her in the supermarket the other day. We still have not spoken to her. When we got to the next aile, my daughter and I looked at each other, smiled and high fived. She knew I had been trying to get through this lady’s shyness for quite some time now. We still haven’t spoken, but that will come. Then there was the old man who would wear very dapper clothes each and every day. Our favorite outfit was in the summer when he would wear what looked like a Venetian Gondolier’s outfit, including a wide brimmed hat. To complete the outfit, he’d wear a very extravagant necklace and beaded bracelets. He asked me to marry him several times which was so endearing, but then I found out that he also asked my friend down the block to marry him as well! Another favorite of ours was Julie, who was so frail but always had her hair neatly pinned in an up do every time we saw her. She was afraid to walk from the wall to the front door, so she would wait patiently for someone to offer their hand to her. She would stand outside for hours holding on to the rail, watching people walk by. Every time she saw me she would ask about my parents and then tell me how gorgeous my daughters were and what a wonderful mother I was. When she would run into my older daughter outside, she would talk to her for sometimes half and hour, and always ended the conversation with over the top compliments. We all loved her very much. Over the years, I’ve noticed that I won’t see one of them for a while, and after asking around, will find out that they have passed away. Sadly, we don’t see my dapper gentleman friend, or Julie anymore. What makes them so special to me is that they have all impacted my family’s lives so positively with just a few words. I didn’t know most of their names, but my kids and I will always fondly remember each, and every one of them. I just hope we were able to make their days just a little brighter as well.”

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  • Lovely story about your mum’s sewing 🙂 The kimchi shirt looks really cute!

  • Carolyn, promise that you will not laugh at me…many will not consider this as a piece of chothing…but to me is the most precious piece that I have…it is a cloth diaper (piece of it) that my son used to carry around…and I still have it saved at the very end of my drawer. Every time that I look and touch that piece of soft cloth my heart is filled with so many nice memories of time when my son was little.

  • Mine is a paisley sweatshirt from the early 80’s. It’s turquoise with royal blue and a bit of green. I don’t know why, but I can’t part with it. I pull it out a couple of time each winter and wear it around the house with sweatpants. Needless to say, it’s pretty thin now.

  • a skirt that swivled when I spinned around. Now when I look back on it… it’s so childish and the colors are really ugly.
    But I thought it made me look cool.

  • First of all, “Wow!” to Jennifer Dolan’s story — an inspiration to all, and a worthy winner indeed! So often we fail to realize the power of just a smile, a few words, and a small investment of time.

    As for your “too-long-kept clothing” challenge, I’m not sure that 38 years is really “too long” to keep a cherished memory, but I might at least win the prize for “most resourceful vintage recycling” with this one…

    When I was pregnant with our first child (who is now 37) my beloved mother-in-law made a beautiful high-waisted floor-length caftan for me out of material we picked out together when we were in Hawaii. It was an all-over print, reminding me of a very small-patterned stained glass window. After wearing it through two pregnancies (mind you, this was during the hippie-dippy 70’s when floor-length stuff was all the rage for street wear) I decided it had served it’s purpose. Styles had changed, and really, it didn’t owe me anything in terms of longevity. But I loved the material so much I simply could not bear to part with it. Imagine how happy I was to have saved it when a last-minute holiday party came around to which I had “nothing to wear”. Out came the scissors, off came about two feet of the bottom hem, on went a belt, and I had a beautiful “new” (and very chic) dress to wear to the event…and one the year after that, and one the several more years after *that*. Finally my beloved husband, an admirer both of thrift and of the two clever seamstresses in his life, but mindful also of his reputation as a breadwinner, put his foot down and insisted that I buy myself something new to wear to holiday parties. (sigh) Since the last time I wore it, it had suffered a near-fatal mishap involving a glass of red wine, I really had to agree that it was time to retire what had been a very good thing. But again, throw it out? Not possible! So that dress, in its most recent incarnation, is even now safely tucked away in the cedar chest where I keep certain items I’ve been saving for a some-day granddaughter to use for “dress up”. Best of all, the birth of that “someday” granddaughter is now literally only days away. Soon she will be snuggled warmly under a wee quilt which incorporated a square of material from that chopped off hem, and until she is old enough to play dress up, I hope she will occasionally see me wearing the scarf I crafted out of another long strip of that beautiful fabric. If only her Great Grandmother were still alive to enjoy the legacy she so lovingly created for us those many years ago!

  • PS: That website is great (See retailers? Food blog promos really do work!) The designs on their stuff are nifty — definitely a “something for everyone” kind of place, and I’ve got it bookmarked for future gifting for my foodie friends & maybe a near-future “just because” present for my knife-wielding son 🙂

  • My “kept far longer” piece of clothing =was= a blue leather mini-skirt that snapped from waist to hemline — the hemline being probably all of ten inches from the waistline. I wore that skirt a lot back when, but I married, had children, the skirt didn’t fit anymore (to put it mildly).

    Still, I saved it. Maybe some day …

    A while back (thirty-five years later) I gave the skirt to the Goodwill.

    Kept the leather slouch hat from the same era, though. Don’t wear it, mind you, but =it= still fits and maybe some day it will be back in style.

  • I have this silk down jacket that my mom had since her 20s. It’s not very pretty, it’s a light iridescent purple with a floral print on the inside (its reversible) — but I wear it every winter. It’s warm, comfortable and I guess I feel pretty cool wearing something my mom had when she was my age. And now that she’s in Shanghai it makes me realize this is a piece in my closet I will never throw away even if it may quite possibly be one of the tackiest pieces I own. Thanks for such a great giveaway, good luck to everyone!

  • And ditto “Wow!” to Jennifer Dolan’s winning story.

  • When’s the next t-shirt competition for those readers in Australia? Just kidding 🙂 Hey, my friend Chris is going gaga about your comment on the beef Wellington. I’m getting all the credit for all his hard work 🙂

  • Cute T’s, Carolyn! And nice giveaway.
    I have a red shirt that has palm trees embossed in it…bought it years ago at Tommy Bahama. I adore it. It’s nearly shredded at the hem and is on it’s last legs! I still wear it around the house.

  • When I grew up, moved out and far away, got married and started working in fashion, I remembered that my mom had bought a silk purple and yellow Diane Von Furstenberg dress when she was a young, new designer and someone like my mom could still afford the label. I was determined to wrangle this dress out of her hands, into my suitcase and back to France if indeed she herself had held onto it all those years. Next trip home, I found that she had the dress hanging in her closet wrapped in plastic. I had to spend my whole vacation home talking her into parting with this prized possession but she finally did. I have yet to wear this beautiful dress which is still like new, but I cherish it like a treasure.

  • When my mom first immigrated to America, she had a sleeveless Coca Cola red muscle shirt that she bought in Indianapolis in 1976. My mom was 90 lbs. and 5’3″ tall at the time. She trekked the shirt along for 22 years herself, and finally passed down the shirt to me. I was 13 years old when I received this muscle tank and wore it to my first middle school “party!” The boy that I was in LOVE with then, James, asked to hang out with me outside. It was in his backyard, in my mom’s Coca Cola muscle tank that I experienced my first kiss with James. I owe all of my romantical powers to that shirt. It is FAR too small for me to wear today (13 years later from that first kiss), but still takes up space in my drawer.

  • Well, i STILL have and refuse to throw out a pair of super soft denim skinny jeans and pit PERFECTLY. However, since they’re a softer, thinner denim, they have huge knee holes (that I love, but my Mom and Grandma make fun of every time they see me wearing it) and even a small, getting-bigger-ever-time hole in the crotch area. I just try to remember to keep my legs strategically crossed when I sit down… I can’t help it. I love those jeans!

  • Contest is now closed. Come back Monday to see who won and for the start of a REALLY fun new contest.

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