Screen-Printed Patriotism

Tops that Celebrate Our Love of America

The Fourth of July is more than just celebrating the birth of America. It has become an opportunity for us to band together and share in those time-honored traditions that have become so inextricably linked to the DNA of American culture. Barbecues, trips to the beach, dips in the pool, and tossing around a frisbee, not to mention parades and fireworks displays are all chances for us to connect with our loved ones. An important part of that tradition is donning some super-cool patriotic duds to salute the US of A. While we think spangled shorts and striped pants can be fun ways to step out, let’s zero in on this year’s best tops and tees to suit you up for The Fourth and any day you want to celebrate our country’s culture.

STARS, STRIPES, AND BITES

Hot dogs, burgers, watermelon, and lemonade are all central components to ringing in America’s big day, as are some homegrown products that beautifully align with our nation’s ethos. There is something purely American about Coke, isn’t there? Lucky Brand’s Coca Cola tee features a bold red backdrop and a classic depiction of the company’s glass bottle from 1915. (Fun fact: did you know that bottled coke actually dates back to the 1800’s?)For a sexier look, slip into Junk Food’s “Property of Budweiser” Cropped Tee, available at Urban Outfitters. This loose white crop top, festooned with wavy red letters, shows off a touch of midriff and pairs wonderfully with both jeans or a cute skirt.Dating back to right after WWII, Bazooka Bubblegum is a true icon of American history. Sporty clothier Homage has debuted a cheery royal blue tee featuring Bazooka’s original logo, which is a joyful tog for grilling up some burgers or kicking it poolside.
LADY LIBERTY

This year’s election is perhaps the most charged of our lifetime and will impact us as a nation for decades to come. The right to vote and the importance of going to vote are at the heart of the American spirit and we’ve found some essential tees that symbolize the essence of who we are as a country. Madwell’s “Vote” Tomboy Tee is a comfy, oversized cream- colored top that features the shirt’s titular word supported by four elongated figures. The brand is also proudly donating a percentage of the purchase of this piece to The American Civil Liberties Union, whose mission is to safeguard the fundamental right to vote that we have come to love and adore.Ban.do’s “Going Places” Tee is like something straight out of a John Hughes movie, which is at the root of 1980’s American nostalgia. A bright red jersey-knit, emblazoned with white lettering, it’s sublime, particularly when tucked into a pair of jeans or a flowy skirt.Let your spirit rise up with The Bee & The Fox’s “Free As a Bird” Tee. A simple black and white affair with angular lettering, this is a shirt all about the message serving as a design in and of itself.

MUSIC OF MISS AMERICA 

Music has always been part of the soul of America, and we’re not just talking about “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, and Janis Joplin are but the tip of the iceberg of the rockers who have helped forge the cultural identity of our country. Madeworn’s Nothing Like a Dead Concert Tee is a distressed tribute to one of the greatest bands ever, featuring a red, white, and blue motif on a skull-and- shades illustration.Free People’s Billy Joel Tank is also a relaxed fit, fashioned like a tee with the sleeves generously cut off. This slouchy black number features a vintage-inspired graphic from Joel’s 1979 tour.For those aching for some new-wave nostalgia, we are gaga for Daydreamer’s Blondie Dreaming Is Free Rocker Muscle Tank. Featuring a portrait of the band’s front woman, Debbie Harry, this black, sleeveless, vintage-style top speaks to the American dream.

FEMME FATALES

The United States has always been a melting pot for some badass ladies. With the outside reflecting the inside, that ideology that women are strong, smart, and powerful has permeated into the core of the cartoons and comics we love so much.

Design giant Marc Jacobs has gotten on the cartoon bandwagon with his line of Peanuts-inspired pieces. The t-shirt with Lucy is a powdery pink background showcasing the cartoon’s most notorious female, complete with her trademark frown. Zara, no stranger to adopting imagery from pop culture, has captured Disney’s Tinker Bell in her most defiant, cross-armed pose. These ladies will have none of your nonsense, thank you very much!Finally, we close out with perhaps the most patriotic character our country has ever produced, DC Comic’s own Wonder Woman. H&M’s Tee celebrates splendor of the Amazon Princess, who is herself a champion of the very words printed beneath her: peace, love, and freedom.