Family Game Night: Wii U T-shirts

November 28, 2012

My family game night is sponsored by Wii U. How U will play next! Click here for a chance to win a Wii U™ Deluxe Set and $5,000 to take your family on vacation!
By Gabrielle.

We have been gaming console-less since we moved to France. I didn’t think we’d miss it for a year and left it in storage. But one year has turned into 2 years+, and I confess, we’ve sighed over our lack of Wii on more than one occasion. It’s not even that we’re huge gamers, it’s just that winter is really long and cold here, and those active games are so reliable to keep us moving on dreary days. (They’re such a draw for playdates too!) Anyway, Nintendo reached out about Wii U, their hot new system, and I was all: Sign me up!

Have you seen the Wii U? It looks ideal for groups and families. You can have up to 4 players splitting the TV screen and working together, and a fifth player using the screen on the new Gamepad Controller and acting as opposition. Which is awesome! And pretty much a perfect fit for our 5 oldest (because our #6 is too little anyway : ).

The launch game for the Wii U is called Nintendo Land — it’s a theme park where all the different “lands” are based on popular Nintendo worlds. Think Donkey Kong, Mario, and Zelda. Again, perfect for our crew — familiar, family-friendly games.

The console is supposed to arrive this week, and the kids are pretty psyched, so we decided to make t-shirts for our opening night competition. (Mostly, we always like a good excuse to come up with t-shirt slogans.) We used the little blue rounded “U” box from the logo for the background, and spent a dinnertime coming up with t-shirt options. Here’s what we have so far:

Wii Madame
Wii Monsieur
It’s on like Donkey Kong
Wii are the World
Team Mario
Team Luigi

If you want in on the t-shirts, you’re in luck. I’ve got downloads ready for you in two sizes, for grownups and little people. Just print out in reverse on iron-on paper. Then cut out and place it on the t-shirt. Turn it over for ironing. And voila! You’re good to go.

But first, I’d love your help. We came up with 6 designs, but we want 2 more, so that each family member has their own. Will you help us out? What should our other two t-shirts say?

P.S. — Huge sweepstakes from FM + Nintendo! Pin your own Family Game Night photos and you can win a Wii U Deluxe set plus $5000 for a family vacation. Fantastic! Find details and the entry form here.

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{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Melissa Walsh November 28, 2012 at 8:58 am

Wii Rock!


2 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 9:00 am

Brilliant, Melissa! I love it.


3 Stacy B November 28, 2012 at 9:17 am

“a Wii babe.” for June.


4 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 9:45 am

Oh. So sweet! The tiny t-shirt for June is so yummy I want to eat it.


5 Angel November 28, 2012 at 9:23 am

For June: This little piggy cried wii wii wii all the way home


6 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 9:45 am

And she LOVES the piggy rhyme!


7 Grace@ Sense and Simplicity November 28, 2012 at 9:43 am

Love your team shirts.

How about “Wii are the ones!” or “Wii are the champions”


8 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 9:46 am

Wii are the Champions? I love it!


9 allysha November 28, 2012 at 9:51 am

Wii will rock you! Close to the Wii Rock, above. But it’s the first thing I thought of!


10 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 11:28 am

I just told Ralph your idea and he said, “I can’t believe I didn’t think of that!”


11 Becky November 28, 2012 at 10:03 am

So cute! All I can come up with is Wii One, or Wii are the change Wii seek, which is probably too long for the design. :)


12 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 11:29 am

Hey. Working a Gandhi quote into any t-shirt is fine by me!


13 Salem November 28, 2012 at 10:09 am



14 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 11:29 am



15 Paula November 28, 2012 at 10:17 am

Wii can do it!
The Legend of Blair (for Zelda)
Wii fall down. Wii get up.


16 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 11:30 am

I’m feeling The Legend of Blair.


17 amy November 28, 2012 at 10:43 am

Gabrielle, I have a question about the business end of the Wii project.

I’ve noticed that Dooce and Say Yes to Hoboken (and probably others) are also promoting the new Wii around this time. Do you know if Nintendo sees an increase in Wii sales attributable to blog placement? I’m assuming it does or it would not approach bloggers to write about it. I think this type of “advetorial” is interesting and is so different from ads in print publication where the line between ads and editorial is quite strict.

What do you think of these product placement efforts? Do you think it is diminished by multiple bloggers all writing about the same thing? Or do you think it is like opening different magazines and seeing the same ads?

I ask in all sincerity. I’d really like to know your thoughts.
thanks in advance,


18 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 11:43 am

It’s true. This post would definitely fall under what I would consider “advertorial”. So I try hard to make the sponsored post line clear and distinct by a) including the logo and “sponsored by” text so readers know exactly what’s going on, and b) using language in my post like: When Nintendo reached out to me…”

As far as multiple bloggers writing about the same thing at once, I have to say, it’s not my favorite thing. But. I get it how it happens. From a blogger’s perspective, I don’t know which sites have been reached out to and on what dates they’ve committed to write. So when several blogs are writing about the same thing all at once, that’s often as much of a surprise to me as it is to the reader.

From the advertiser’s point of view, I’m guessing it’s hard to figure out, among all the blogs out there, which ones have overlapping readers. I imagine there are some readers who are only seeing this campaign on one blog, and others who are seeing Wii posts on several blogs. We can assume the advertiser is trying for a broad reach and broad audience, at a key holiday shopping time. But no matter how far their reach, at least a few overlapping readers are sure to be getting way too much similar coverage.

So I guess I would say it’s most like your last question: It’s like opening different magazines and seeing the same ads.

And since I’m behind on my reading, I’m off to check out the campaign on Dooce and Say Yes…

P.S. — Thank you for bringing up the topic in such a calm respectful manner. I appreciate it!


19 Amy November 28, 2012 at 2:51 pm

Thanks, Gabrielle, for the interesting response. As someone who “came of age” in print journalism, I find I am living a case study for the evolution of media!

Also, I forgot to mention how creative the three approaches to this “advertorial” have been. It’s been fun to see the different approaches.



20 Clyde November 28, 2012 at 12:17 pm

Wii WILL ROCK YOU! or what about: Wii-LA-LA!


21 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Wii will rock you! Another brilliant one.


22 Angela November 28, 2012 at 1:09 pm

Definitely “Princess Wii” for a girl (a la Princess Peach). Or maybe “Team LuWiigi”? We are Mario fans… :>

Love all the ones above as well.


23 Design Mom November 28, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Hello Team LuWiigi! Clever.


24 Kathryn h November 28, 2012 at 3:46 pm

Yes Wii Can!


25 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:44 am



26 Allison Profeta November 28, 2012 at 5:44 pm

Quick question about the Family Game Night Sweepstakes . . . under step 1 it says “Follow us on Pinterest.” Do they mean to follow Federated Media Publishing? Or Nintendo? know sumed they meant Federated Media Publishing but couldn’t find them on Pinterest. :-( Didn’t know if you knew what they meant.

For your t-shirts, I thought of the song by fun. “Wii Are Young!” or “Wii Came, Wii Saw, Wii Played!”


27 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:44 am

Hmmm. I actually have no idea. Let me see if I can find some info and get back to you.


28 Sara November 28, 2012 at 7:14 pm



29 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:44 am

C’est parfait!


30 Becky November 28, 2012 at 7:44 pm

Thought of another one, but I can’t make it look right, haha. Sweet, but written as SWiit? Eh, better in my head! :)


31 Lori November 28, 2012 at 7:49 pm

I see what you are saying here. Only I would want to type it as sWiiiiiiit. That long hold in the middle is necessary for the full effect.


32 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:45 am

Very Napoleon Dynamite.


33 Kay November 28, 2012 at 9:08 pm

What a fun post! The t-shirt idea is genius, and I’m totally enjoying everyone’s fun & cheeky suggestions. How about…

Wii one (for your wee one, of course!)
One… two… three… Wii! (Or 1, 2, 3… Wii!)
The royal Wii


34 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:45 am

The Royal Wii! I love it.


35 Carolina November 29, 2012 at 2:18 pm

“This little piggy went Wii, Wii, Wii”


36 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:46 am

This makes me want to go wake up June, just so I can play with her. : )


37 Nicole November 29, 2012 at 5:17 pm

Just wanted to chime in on the advertising content comment…

Witnessing the evolution of sponsors in blog posts is a little disheartening and off putting. I read a lot of blogs and my favorite blogs are the ones in which I can connect to the writer in an intimate manner through their stories and personal life. Seeing “this post is sponsored by” totally disconnects me from the writer and their stories. I like how you created original content/DIY craft but it feels so fake when it has a company tied to it. If the post was purely about a DIY craft and had no sponsor I absolutely woul have felt differently.

I just wanted to give input on how some of your readers feel when they see sponsored content.


38 Design Mom November 30, 2012 at 12:56 am

Thanks for the feedback, Nicole. Good to know. And I’m sad to hear these posts don’t resonate with you. If it helps, I can assure you the sponsor gets no say in what’s actually in the post. And they don’t approve the post, or see it before it goes live. The ideas and words are always mine. The “sponsored by” language is actually required by law.

Blogging is still a new field. And figuring out how to monetize blogs in a smart way is still being figured out. But please know that creating this blog requires full-time hours, and working with sponsors now and again (I’ll share approx. 25 posts this week and 2 of those are sponsored) in order to provide (what I hope is) great content is one attempt at making it work.

As I said, the monetizing part is still a big experiment. If you have ideas on how to improve it, I’d love to hear them! Feel free to email me anytime.


39 Kay December 1, 2012 at 7:06 pm

Well, since the topic now seems to be open…

I want to weigh in as well, to say that I loved this post! I thought the sponsorship was integrated in a natural and authentic way and was not in the least off-putting.

Actually, I kept forgetting that it WAS a sponsored post because the story was so genuine; this could easily have been a post that was inspired by an early Christmas gift to the Blairs from a close friend (as opposed to a corporate sponsor) and was completely in keeping with the tone and quality writing I’ve come to expect from Design Mom. The Wii name/logo was prominent, sure, but in a playful and creative way that I found endearing, engaging, and easy to relate to. It didn’t feel like I was being “sold” anything or that the integrity of the writing was compromised in any way.

Phew, sorry to be long-winded. Keep up the great work, Design Mom! :)


40 Amy3 November 30, 2012 at 8:36 am

Wii beastie – this is something we say in our family and if we were creating Wii shirts (so cute, btw), I know we’d use it straight away.


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