What The F**K Is Going On With Home Alone Tees?
Over the weekend, a record store in Burlington, Ontario, found the holy grail of vintage t shirts in their back room. An entire box full of 1991 Home Alone Movie Promo shirts were found completely brand new and untouched. The best part? The store was giving away these shirts for FREE. Or that’s what people thought. The name of the record store and employees involved will not be mentioned in this article because of things that will be revealed throughout the article. It’s really a crazy story, so strap in and get ready for a wild ride. Some things in this story are still open-ended and we are only able to speculate on what actually happened, but we will update the article as more information comes out!
Originally, there was an Instagram post that went live on Friday showing the t-shirts with a caption that said “We just found a buttload of these in our back room. All size large. If you want one come to the store and let us know and we’ll give you one”! Supposedly these shirts were from an ex employee at the record store who worked for 20th Century Fox.
By the time we saw this post on Saturday, the original post only had 36 likes. But this is now where vintage collectors and resellers found out about these shirts. At the same time, multiple Facebook Marketplace listings went live advertising the vintage Home Alone shirts. These marketplace listings were for the same shirts, but were not made by the store itself. They were made by a store employee. This employee had put the shirts up on Marketplace and instead of them being free, they were now charging $100 per shirt. Of course this is still a crazy deal as these shirts are worth at least 5 times that amount, but now there seems to be something suspicious going on. What was supposed to be free, is now $100, and who even knows if they are 100% legit shirts and not newly made fakes? This is an incredibly rare and popular shirt, and there were already fakes being made. But for $100, it may be worth the risk.
By the time we at BIDSTITCH saw this posting, we were shocked. The record store updated their post saying that all the shirts were gone, and we as a community news source in the vintage space, wanted to share this to our followers. Seeing that their post only had 36 likes, this was something that MANY people missed out on and flew under the radar. So we screenshotted their post and reposted it on our page. We DM’d the page telling them we were going to reshare this picture and tag them and give them all credit, assuming they would be more than happy to cooperate. What happened next is the part that really muddies the water on this story.
Immediately the record store Instagram page messages us to take the post down. No explanation. nothing. Just take the post down. Now things are starting to make sense in our heads. THE SHIRTS MUST BE FAKE. Theres no reason why they would want us to take this down. Its an incredibly cool story, and all we did was reshare the same image they posted on their public Instagram account. We go back and forth with them telling them that we aren’t going to take our post down without some valid reason since we are just reporting on the news. And if there is a deeper story here, we felt it was our duty to look out for people that may have just gotten scammed. But then the unthinkable happened.
Likes and comments are flooding in on our post as this is a pretty phenomenal story. People are immediately calling it fake, while others are just straight shocked that they missed out. Even better, we have people commenting saying that they were able to get some of the shirts from the record store. We immediately go to the DM’s to see pictures of these shirts and hear peoples opinions on the legitimacy of the shirts.
Two vintage collectors, Attire Co and j.plco both were able to get a shirt and DM’d us photos for proof. They both stand by the claims of the shirts being 100% legit. The Shirts still smell of fresh ink, and they have the appropriate creases for supposedly being stored in a box for 30 years. Copyright date and tag all check out as well.
Everyone who was able to get a shirt swears that they are legit, and everything really seems to check out on the shirts. Of course they look too good to be true, but if they really were just sitting in a box for 30+ years, they are going to look basically brand new. The shirts have the correct copyright date, the Stedman tag the shirts are on match up to the copyright date, the shirts are all single stitch. Everything seems legit. So if the shirts aren’t fake, we still want to understand why the page is asking us to take down our post.
We now have to look back at what happened to the shirts changing from free to $100. Many of the people we talked to who purchased a shirt said they purchased it directly from an employee at the record store. People were confused about this, as the shirts were supposed to be free, but if people only saw the Facebook Marketplace listing they didn’t even know the shirts were supposed to be free in the first place. We assumed something shady must be going on, and we thought that maybe the employee was selling the shirts through the “back door” and pocketing the extra cash. Because the Facebook Marketplace listings were under the name of the specific employee member and not a company account made it even more suspicious. Of course we don’t know for sure, but this is what we and most community members were thinking at the time. The employee is probably the person who runs the store Instagram as well, and is the same person messaging us to take down the post. But this still leaves a lot of questions and little to no answers.
We spoke to multiple users who interacted directly with the employee at the record store and they said it was very normal and there was nothing shady going on. They were asked to pay in cash and that was it. Attire Co, J.plco and another user named Mitchell Turner all agreed that the employee at the register really had no idea what the shirts were and if they were even valuable at all. But if this was the case, how did they come up with the $100 price tag?
We went to the source to find out. After archiving our original IG post (like they had asked us to), we messaged the record store looking for more concrete answers. They said a lot of their initial responses came off as rude or angry because they were receiving an overwhelming amount of messages from vintage people asking about shirts. This is the main reason they wanted our post taken down. This was never our intention of course, but its an unfortunate consequence. It may not seem like that big a deal to us, but for this page that has no idea what vintage is, it can be overwhelming for them.
They also said that 80% of the shirts they did in fact give out for free, and a small handful of shirts were sold for $100 after they were told by other customers just how valuable they really are. In their words, they said they only 9 people paid for shirts. We haven’t found anyone who said they got a shirt for free, but that is what they are claiming to be true.
We want to believe the people at the record store are telling the truth, and that nothing suspicious was going on behind the scenes. We want to believe that all the shirts given out and sold are 100% authentic. Because if that is the case, this is just another example of how crazy collecting vintage can get. From what we have been told by community members, the shirts appear real and it’s very possible the store did give out a bunch for free and happened to sell some extra at the end. If the shirts are fake, then this may be one of the biggest scams in recent memory. Without having a fake and real Home Alone tee to compare it too its hard, but things do seem to check out with those who purchased one from the store. Its very easy for us to be pessimistic about finds and stories like this, but at the end of the day, stuff like this happens ALL THE TIME in vintage. Real or fake, the past few days have been absolutely wild.
Although there are pieces of the story we may never truly find out, this will go down as a really memorable and crazy story in the vintage community, especially for the Canadian community.
What do you think really happened with the shirts? Think they are legit or fake? Let us know in the comments!
Special thanks to everyone we talked to and interviewed for this story!
Be the first to leave a comment