Remember the super cool present I mentioned for Cody? Well it came and it’s pretty amazing.

It's a blanket! Made from t-shirts!

It’s a blanket made out of Cody’s (and some of my) old t-shirts. I have been saving them for years, knowing that I would someday do this for him. I finally found Project Repat who would make it the way I wanted and for a fair price.  Even better, they “guarantee that [their products are] made in the USA in a healthy working environment, where people are treated with dignity regardless of their backgrounds.

I chose a 5×6 blanket and sent in 29 shirts with specific instructions to use the front and back of one shirt. Rather than using the the reverse side of the shirts for the back, I chose to gray fleece for the back. The fleece is super cozy, the blanket is made AMAZINGLY well and it is just about the best snuggle/nap blanket possible.

But.

As soon as I laid out the blanket I noticed that they had used the back of two shirts on the front of the blanket, two backs that I didn’t care about at all. It didn’t take long to realize which shirts were missing from the blanket. Cody’s IU Law shirt from his first year of law school and his ‘Athlete of the Week’ shirt from high school. I triple checked to make sure I didn’t forget to mail the shirts and once I couldn’t find them I contacted the owner via their live chat option on their website.

Nathan Rothstein answered me and promised me an answer as soon as possible. Sadly the answer was that the shirts had somehow been lost somewhere during production and they would most likely never be found or replaced.

Ouch.

Nathan genuinely apologized in our chat, through several emails and in a handwritten letter addressed to me with a check refunding all of my money. He was fantastic to work with, meant his apology and followed through with it. Impressive Nathan. Very impressive.

I completely understand that small businesses are run by humans and humans make mistakes. While we’re bummed those shirts are most likely gone forever, they’re just shirts. We have 28 other shirts immortalized, 28 shirts saved from the landfill and one hell of a blanket to nap with for the rest of our lives.

Does this really look like a guy who is bothered by a couple of missing shirts?

project repat blanket

Nope.

I fully support Project Repat and what they do, they put out a darn fine product and Nathan assured me in his note that my problem has been brought up with his production partners and will be worked on from within. At this moment they have all my faith and support, and I wholly support them if you’re in the market for a snuggly blanket made from t-shirts. (Don’t let me down guys. I’ll hear about it if you do.)

The 5×6 is a perfect size for me, but Cody’s toes stick out just a skosh. If you’re making one for a tall person? Go big. There’s also an option to completely customize your blanket for an additional $50, which means you can specify where each shirt goes on your blanket. If you’re worried about shirts going missing it may be worth the extra investment to make sure they end up how you want them.

Want 20% off? Use the code ‘fairwagejobs’ at checkout on ProjectRepat.com

You know who else approves of our new blanket? This guy:

And he doesn’t approve of much.

Comments

  1. Aw, man, I’m sorry they lost your shirts! That looks like a great blanket, though. I’ve always wanted to do something like that for my husband!

    Casey Reply:

    @Nichole, It is really great, I hear they’re a beast to make yourself though.

  2. Well you know how failure is the secret to success? (Hmm. I wonder why I said that?)

    A company that screws up and then makes things right is actually better than one that just gets it right the first time—-because they PROVE that they are committed to customer service! Strange but true.

    Casey Reply:

    @Robby Slaughter, If anyone knows it’s you! And yes, that’s exactly what Project Repat did.

  3. Thank you for sharing how you found your way through to the other side, I imagine it wouldn’t be too hard to get caught up in letting resentment fester. Precious lesson for us all.

    Casey Reply:

    @Amanda, Eh, there were a few moments of festering. But festering is like holding a grudge which is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. (I don’t want to die.)

  4. That is an absolutely fabulous blanket. So great to hear about a company with awesome customer service.

    Casey Reply:

    @Colleen – @amadisonmom, Yes! It is nice to know that people own up to their mistakes rather than hide from them.

  5. I’m so sorry about the shirts. My mom makes these for people and does an amazing job and doesn’t charge enough(and she’s in Indy). A fun thing she did for me was when I graduated from high school she made a stuffed patchwork bear out of many of my favorite shirts I had worn as a kid. I loved taking that bear to college with me. Love thoughtful gifts like this. xo

    Casey Reply:

    @tracy@sellabitmum, WELL NOW YOU TELL ME. ;)
    I’ve already started saving shirts for Addie!

  6. Thanks for writing about us, and again, we are really sorry about what happened with your shirts. We have a lot of checks and balances in our system, but obviously something went wrong here. We work hard with our production partners to ensure that this doesn’t happen in the future and really appreciate you understanding, but also know the frustration. We look forward to working with you in the future and hope your readers will trust us to make beautiful made in the USA blankets for them!

    Casey Reply:

    @Nathan Rothstein, Of course! Thank you again, the blanket really is amazing.

  7. This was a great post in every way possible. And like you, there have been businesses that I have no problem giving my money to (or recommending to others) if a mistake was made & they made every effort to make it right.

    With so much competition in the marketplace, finding a company who’s culture fits with your personal beliefs, and who knows the BIG PICTURE of providing excellent customer service – especially when the customer was wronged or disappointed – is too valuable to drop over a mistake made….even when sentimentality is involved. And trust me, I am among the MOST sentimental of them all, and if I had been in your position, I’d like to think I’d react the same way.

    Casey Reply:

    @tracy, YES! One of the things I like about being a grownup is deciding who gets my hard earned money.
    I always feel better when I make the right choice, even if there’s bumps along the way.

  8. So cool. I’d like to do something like that with my baby’s blankets.

    Saw your piece on IndyStar!

  9. Ordering this right now! Thanks for the great idea!

    XO