By Maddie Sievers
Unofficial 2017 (Friday, March 3) is approaching fast! Whether you’re partaking in the festivities or not, wearing green is an unspoken rule, and you obviously have to wear green on the actual, official Saint Patrick’s Day. Between these two Irish-themed days, you’re going to need a lot of green clothes! Come January, you’ll see Facebook ads galore for online stores selling Unofficial shirts. However, many of these sites are tricky, claiming their store closes in t-minus x-amount of hours or that they are “95% sold out.” On top of that, they’re often far more expensive than the stores on Green Street. Find yourself a great deal and check out the following places on campus to buy all your Illini-themed St. Paddy’s gear!
TeShurt has bragging rights as the only store in Champaign that sells Chief apparel, a mascot which has come to be iconic for the Unofficial holiday. On top of that, almost all of this store’s t-shirts (including all Unofficial gear) are buy one, get one free! All of their Unofficial t-shirts are also available in long-sleeve and crewneck styles.
Classic Illinois Shamrock Tee
This is as basic as Unofficial shirts get. One advantage of basic is that this shirt can be worn year-round without blatantly supporting the day of drinking.
Shamrock Chief Tee
Make Champaign Drunk Again Tee
Even if you’re not a fan of our new president, this variation of his campaign slogan is one we can all easily support.
Illinois State Outline Chief Tee
If you’re still loyal to the Chief and are fiercely devoted to the good ol’ state of Illinois, this is the perfect shirt for you this Unofficial!
Unofficial Drinking Team Tee
Our state, our…drinking team? The font is even a perfect replication of the one used for Illini athletics!
Established 1996 Tee
Here’s a fun fact: ironically, 2017 is the 21st anniversary of Unofficial. Technically, the drinking holiday is just now turning the legal drinking age.
Drinking Illini Baseball Scoreboard Tee
This shirt design cleverly imitates a baseball scoreboard in honor of the Cubs victory this past fall.
Classic Unofficial Chief Tee
This design has been used year after year for Unofficial gear in C-U, practically making it the unofficial Unofficial logo.
Hidden U of I Tee
Did you know that the word Unofficial contains the letters U of I? This shirt makes it clear that the U of I is the true home of the Unofficial tradition.
Heineken Logo Baseball Tee
Love Heineken? Love Unofficial? This one’s a no-brainer.
Out of all the stores on campus selling Illini apparel, Gameday Spirit offers perhaps the largest selection of them all! The store also has a wide range of unique Unofficial clothing designs, and even an Illini hat in Irish orange and green!
#1 In Fun Tee
We may not be the #1 party school anymore, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be #1 in fun!
Roman Numeral Unofficial Crewneck
Roman numerals always make things seem more important, which is of course why this shirt takes the liberty of doing so for Unofficial.
Vintage Shamrock Tee
Such a cute new design, and one of the few shirts at Gameday Spirit that explicitly says “Unofficial.”
Irish Illini Ballcap
Come Unofficial, U of I colors are no longer orange and blue—they’re orange and green! This is also another great way to show your love of Unofficial throughout the year, and not just in March.
Green University of Illinois Tee
This is a popular shirt that’s ordinarily found in classic orange and blue colors. This Unofficial rendition simply turns that shirt green.
Vintage Shamrock Long Sleeve Baseball Tee
Who doesn’t love a baseball tee, especially a unique one like this with long sleeves instead of the traditional mid sleeves?
Basic Light Green Illinois Long Sleeve Tee
Gameday Spirit offers a wide variety of shades of green and different shirt styles (as seen below) bearing the classic white Illinois screen print across the chest.
Basic Dark Green Illinois Tee
Basic Light Green Illinois Crewneck
Basic Light Green Illinois Hoodie
Round Illini Logo Hunter Green Quarter Zip
This may be the only Unofficial quarter zip being sold in stores on campus! Plus, it comes in a hunter green shade that is much more subtle than the traditional neon-green color that can be seen from a mile away!
THE ILLINI SHOP
Formerly T.I.S. Bookstore, the Illini Shop has a small but unique array of Unofficial clothing to choose from.
Heathered Dark Green Illinois Shamrock Tee
The Illini Shop offers a variety of shirts very similar to the basic ones sold at Gameday Spirit. This shirt and the following crewneck, however, feature a shamrock and black outlined letters, rather than plain white ones. This tee is also different as it has a heathered style rather than a flat, one-tone color.
Light Green Illinois Shamrock Crewneck
Light Green Illinois Shamrock Long Sleeve Tee
This shirt is exactly like the ones shown above at Gameday Spirit, except there is a festive shamrock beneath the Illinois screen print.
Drinking Leprechaun Unofficial 2017
’If you’re one to buy a new Unofficial shirt every March, this shirt is for you as it notes the year, 2017, on it. It’s also the only shirt sold on campus with a cute little Irish leprechaun on it!
Dark Green Illinois Shamrock Baseball Tee
This shirt is a fitted ladies shirt in a baseball tee style, making it very appealing to girls who want an Unofficial shirt but prefer something other than a baggy, unfitted T-shirt.
Gameday Spirit and Illini Shop photographs courtesy of Madeline Sievers
Featured image of TeShurt courtesy of Madison Gillespie