Shirts and Giggles
Kids These Days / Wherever there is a bad idea that can’t be amended, there is also a wary elder echoing the age-old adage, “You can’t polish a turd.” Thanks to recent scientific strides from the Discovery Channel series MythBusters, that myth was officially put to rest; you can totally polish a “high-gloss” turd using a glossmeter.
Similar is the polished aesthetic behind 23-year-old Chad Maluyo’s Crappy Kids clothing line. The signature Crappy Kids logo features a cartoon of an absurdly adorable small turd with big, glistening eyes and a tongue that peeps out, forming a shy half-smile. To put it tersely, you haven’t seen a poop looking this sincere since Mr. Hankey, the Christmas Poo.
A number of questions may arise when you see someone sporting a large crap cartoon. It’s a joke, right? Or is it boldly making a statement by turning something everybody does, but are shameful about, into a cute face? No wait, it’s telling us that we take clothing and image way too seriously . . . that we should loosen up a little. Right?
In an email exchange with the Weekly, Maluyo explained, “Crappy Kids comes from my mission to prove that if I can get away with selling ‘crap’ on a shirt and make money off of it, then anyone–no matter how silly your concept is or how impossible your dreams, goals, or whatever you want to achieve may be–you can do it as long as you work hard, be humble, and never give up. And if I can make it big one day, then it also proves my other theory that people will literally buy Crap.”
One man’s crap is another’s business model, but for Maluyo and the rest of the Kids, it’s both, and one that seems to be working well so far. The Crappy Kids clothing company, founded two years ago by Maluyo and his older brother Cameron, restarted last February with much vim and vigor. In the future, look for shirts fitted for women and kids, so it can truly be a family affair.