And check out the store! These shirts will make lovely gifts for others and yourself! Email if you have questions.
Monique and Esther, an AR helper.
Interview With Monique Campbell:
Monique (daughter-in-law of Nancy Campbell, Above Rubies) is owner and artist of the Blessed T-shirts. Mother and wife, though, is her career. She brings her children with her when doing the shirts! And, yes, she wears her own shirts!
Hello, Monique! Thank you for joining me on my blog today. Maybe you could start out by saying a bit about yourself ( and something about your children, too ).
Hi Keturah, thank you for having me!
My husband and I are originally from Australia, and we came to the States 10 years ago with our 3 yr old son Josh (now 13).
The main reason we moved is because there were about 30 cousins running around in the woods of Tennessee and we wanted him to be apart of it all.
We have since had 3 more children, Harry 10, Max 6, and our first girl Georgia Sky 2. We home school our children and coach them competitively in Chess.
Our eldest son Josh was the TN State Chess champion in 2012. If he knew I was telling you this he would be so embarrassed.
How long have you been drawing?
I did art in school and I’ve done a few pieces, but I never really pursued it as a career. I’m actually a hairstylist and use to have a salon back in Australia.
A couple of years back, Pearl and Serene asked if I would draw the illustrations for their book Trim Healthy Mama.
I’m not sure how relevant this is...but it’s kind of funny. Can I let you in on a secret? No one really knows this except family...
This is about the exercise drawings in the book. I asked Serene if she would do the exercises so I could draw her correct form, but she had just given birth and couldn’t do some of them, so I asked Pearl and she was worried her form wouldn’t be as perfect as Serene’s....So I had no choice but to do them myself...If you take a close look you might recognize me but most people don’t.
That is so interesting!!! Are any of the characters based off of real people?
Yes. The girl with the long curly hair is based on Pearls daughter Meadow.
Actually I don’t think she even knows about it. Then 2 of the boys are based on Pearl's sons Rocky and Bowen. The Asian girl is based on my Aunt Kate's adopted daughter from China.
The girl with the short hair is based on Alisa from the band “Redhead Express”. She was one of my hair clients...Oh and her sister Megan who plays base...she's in there too.
One of the moms is my Pearl and Serene wrapped into one. There’s also a conservative version of Evangeline, Nancy and Colin’s eldest daughter....I could probably keep going here....as you can tell!
What gave you the idea to start the Blessed Tees?
I was going to do a t-shirt for Above Rubies and I had already designed one that Nancy loved, but my husband Rock and I were eating at our favorite Indian restaurant and we were discussing other t-shirt designs. Then my husband had the idea of the word blessed with children standing underneath it...
Kind of like the window decals with the family all in a line...except instead of just saying “Hey I have 6 kids, a chicken, 5 dogs and a cat...."This is a more bold way of saying we are blessed because we have 6 children and that’s it!! That’s why we don’t include pets.
This is only about the family. Both Mom and Dad are joined together, showing they are happily married and still in love!
All the children are happy...and the unborn baby is also included.
Actually we wanted to show that the unborn baby has a personality even while inside the womb.
So we really want these t-shirts to say...Pro family...Pro Marriage...and Pro Life!
As a Christian I believe really strongly in these 3 things....Tonight I wore my blessed family tee to an Indian restaurant. I made sure that all the Indian and Muslim women who were eating at the other tables could see my t-shirt.
It was kind of fun!
Do you hope that it will become a full-time job?
I really enjoy making each t-shirt.
It’s interesting to see how many children and grandchildren people have and which characters they choose.
And having Nancy and Colin - my amazing in-laws- pray over each t-shirt before it’s sent out is a great thing. I remember as a child growing up in church we would pray over prayer hankychiefs and place them under the bed of someone who was sick or not saved.
I know that this was also done back in biblical times and people received healing and other miracles in this way. So I’m hoping that people will really receive more than a t-shirt. Maybe they will receive a miracle.
You know Colin and Nancy are praying all sorts of blessings over these t-shirts. Including babies being conceived!!
So will see...I’m hoping to hear good things!!
Can you explain the process of making a shirt? Be as descriptive as possible!
Well we read over the order form and see what color and size t-shirt is required.
Then we get each character out and line them up in order from oldest to youngest.
It’s quite tricky keeping all the children in a straight line...it’s a bit like real life. Except I use a special heat resistant tape and that helps.
Then we press the t-shirt at 410 degrees to remove any moisture in the fabric.
Place a large template over the front area. There are 3 spaces where we add the Blessed template at the top, we line the children underneath and then the Above Rubies logo goes inside the lower area. Once everything is perfectly straight, we remove the positioning template and pull down the machine.
About 8 seconds later it's ready...we stretch the print while it’s hot to give it some flexibility, and then its ready to fold and package. Because I’m a perfectionist the art of folding can take some time. It has to be exact....if not it’s refolded multiply times until its perfect.
Each one comes with a thank you card, and washing instructions then sealed in a clear bag with a Blessed family tees sticker to seal it. Each t-shirt takes about 10-20 minutes...depending on how many children we add.
Today we did a t-shirt with 41 grandchildren...that was a lot of fun!
Where can people buy the shirts?
They can go to www.aboverubiesblessedfamilytee.com To purchase the Above Rubies Blessed Tee. Then we also have our own website www.blessedfamilytees.com
Do you have any recommendations for anyone when buying the shirts?
I really love the pregnancy one. It’s a great way to tell friends and family that your pregnant. I plan to wear this one myself when the time comes.
They also make a great baby shower gift.
Another thing that I did just this week was design myself a family t-shirt
I proudly showed it off to my husband...and then I said do you notice anything different about the t-shirt...His eyes scanned across the 3 boys and the little girl and then with a look of shock he noticed I had added an unborn smiling baby....What is that? he asked...Oh that’s just our future baby....I think he got the hint!!
But tonight when I wore my t-shirt out...one of my friend's face lit up and she said...Oh my...congratulations!!
I had to break the news that I wasn’t pregnant...but it was fun!!
Thank you for doing this, Monique! I hope you have a wonderful BLESSED week. :)
You are welcome Keturah!! Thank you.
Great Christmas gift! Or just a gift to make somebody else happy! Or, maybe you want one for yourself :D