March 1, 2021

Dive Into Your Latest T-Shirt Obsession

Dive Into Your Latest T-Shirt Obsession

If you miss traveling and collecting souvenirs from the places you’ve seen – and if you love a good t-shirt, a popular subscription service can bring the best watering holes to you without you having to leave the house.

Each month, members of The Dive Bar Shirt Club receive a t-shirt from one of the country’s many unique dive bars. These colorful, conversation starting shirts are selected by the “Dive Bar Crew” and feature cool designs and witty slogans from watering holes across the US. Just think, you can be the envy of your friends with a shirt from the Rhinoceros Bar on Missoula, Montana (where you can “Charge in and get your horn wet”) or Felton California’s Monty’s Log Cabin, which asks the question, “Does a bar sit in the woods?” You could even sport a shirt from Greenwater, Washington’s Naches Bar & Grill, just like Barnes.

The club was founded in 2009 by Cody Shoemake and Mike Edwards, two childhood buddies from West Texas who shared a love of neighborhood bars. In a 2014 interview with Newsweek, Shoemake said he was inspired to start his own subscription t-shirt club after his experience as a member of a surf t-shirt club – one with good ideas, but poor quality tees. He recalled, "My closet was getting full of shirts I never wore, and I thought to myself, ‘What if I could make an interesting idea with a shirt that people would love to wear, a higher-end shirt?’"

The Dive Bar Shirt Club’s shirts are made from soft, ringspun cotton and, instead of surf companies, Shoemake decided on showcasing dive bars because, "That's where we like to hang out, [in] dive bars that have history and are rough around the edges. And, of course, we love unique T-shirts as well." In another interview with the Durango (Colorado) Herald in 2012, Shoemake said that, “We like places with some history, not too shiny, comfortable like you’re drinking in your living room.” He added, “We don’t go too far, where it’s actually scary – that’s what we call a die bar, not a dive bar.” 

The company, which is based out of Key West, Florida, boasts thousands of members from around the globe, with a large number of its international fans hailing from Germany and Australia.

For a mere $23 a month, you can treat yourself (or a friend) to a tee as well as a little background on the tavern. After the month is over, the t-shirt is retired forever, making each tee a limited edition. You can see the past designs – and sign up for a membership on the club’s website.

You can see sneak peeks of future tees on The Dive Bar Shirt Club’s Instagram page and follow them on Twitter and Facebook.