Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

Just in time for the Fourth: Made in the USA June 29, 2017

Filed under: Uncategorized — Audrey Kletscher Helbling @ 5:00 AM
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IT’S THAT TIME OF YEAR when patriotism swells/sells, when red, white and blue are the colors of choice. Count me in on this July Fourth fashion show of American pride.

The t-shirt I am wearing in this photo is one of several Thrivent Financial tees I’ve worn while recovering from a broken shoulder. Minnesota Prairie Roots file photo May 2017.


I’m not one who typically cares much about what I wear except for fit and comfort. But I am growing a tad tired of the same three t-shirt styles I’ve worn for the past 5 ½ weeks. A broken shoulder necessitated the easy-on-easy-off polyester and cotton Thrivent Financial shirts that ease up my right arm, over my neck and then onto my left arm. I acquired the tees while volunteering and now they will forever link to my Summer of the Broken Shoulder. I love these shirts for their soft comfort and stretch.

But, with the Fourth of July approaching, I wanted something festive. There would be no perusing clothing racks in multiple stores or even trying shirts on in dressing rooms. Such are the limits of a fractured humerus.


The front of my new patriotic t-shirt.


Rather, I found a style I was OK with at a mega discount retailer, chose my regular size and hoped it would fit. It did. And bonus, the shirt tag and graphic denote the garment as Made in the USA. The only downside—the year 2017 printed on the front, perhaps a marketing ploy to get customers to buy new again in 2018. While the date may make the shirt unwearable beyond this year for some, not for me. You can expect this $4.97 tee to remain in my closet for many summers.


My new tee came with this tag.



TELL ME: Would you wear this shirt beyond 2017? And is Made in the USA important to you?

© Copyright 2017 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


35 Responses to “Just in time for the Fourth: Made in the USA”

  1. gograndma Says:

    If it’s soft and comfy, I’d wear it anyway. As long as there are no tags itching the back of my neck – ha ha! Sorry about the shoulder 😦

  2. Beth Ann Says:

    I probably would wear it for years to come as well. I do like when something boasts it is made in the USA but I have to admit I don’t exclusively shop for this type of product only like many people do.

  3. Yes, made in America is important to me. America is important to me! I do like your t shirt and hope you have fun wearing it. Also hope that the blue on your arm is fading. As far as the 2017, I would probably have mustard squirted on my shirt by the end of the day, or barbecue sauce, so I don’t think it would make it past the summer of 2017

  4. Love the shirt and would wear it for years too 🙂 I do look for made in the USA as well as support the local business owners in my community. Recently purchased an American Flag to display at our home through the American Legion – hope it arrives in time for the 4th – I do have little flags to put out too. Big fan of 4th of July & Veterans Day – celebrating the men and women who serve/served our country as well as displaying the American Flag and the colors of red, white and blue. Happy Day – Enjoy 🙂

  5. Caryl Larson Says:

    It just means you bought it in 2017.

  6. Almost Iowa Says:

    I see your arm is still showing patriotic colors. I hope it feels better than it looks.

    As for wearing out of date (dated) clothes, hey, that is a prerogative of age. One of the few that age gives us.

    I still occasionally wear the t-shirt I bought after running the Boston Marathon, as well as the one I got after competing in a five mile swim across Lake Minnetonka.

    The shirts don’t fit as well as they once did – but that is all explained by the dates. 🙂

  7. Virginia Updegrove Says:

    So sorry about your arm. Ouch for sure. I think people are getting much more concerned about made in the USA than they have in last years. I to like to buy US made things whenever possible.
    For the mustard and ketchup drops I have this solved. Recently I started making and selling “shirt protectors aka adult bibs”. My patriotic ones have sold like wildfire. Actually men have been my best customers, but the ladies like them also. You will find one in my purse and when I go out to eat I put it on. It’s wonderful. Was looking to see if I could post a picture, but don’t think I can.
    Get better soon.

  8. Littlesundog Says:

    We buy Made in the USA whenever possible. And if something isn’t available and we have time, we look elsewhere and tell the business why we are going elsewhere. They need to understand what is important to the consumer. Made in China always sends us packing!

  9. Janet Hanf Says:

    I would wear that t shirt anytime.Where did you get it?

  10. Jackie Says:

    Love the shirt Audrey, I would definitely wear it in the years to come, I probably wouldn’t have paid much attention to the year if you wouldn’t have said anything. “Made in the USA” is always a good thing 🙂

  11. Susan Ready Says:

    The shirt looks festive and I especially support products USA made-Happy 4th

  12. Neil Says:

    I don’t buy shirts with a date on them, but will accept give aways. I still wear one from a blood drive that has 2005 on it. I love the patriotic design, but don’t understand why the designer felt it necessary to put a date on a shirt that they were giving away. If the dates weren’t on them, I’d probably keep the shirts longer, which would only be to their advantage from a free advertising perspective.

  13. Missy's Crafty Mess Says:

    I’d keep wearing it too. I hope your recovery is progressing!

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