Laura Lynn Johnston turns Peter MacKay's 'Albertastan' comment into T-shirt
Designer who made 'Machete-wielding savage' shirt after Edmonton slam to do same for 'Albertastan'
A comment made by Justice Minister Peter MacKay on Wednesday has now gone full viral circle.
That's right — you can now buy "Albertastan" T-shirts.
One day after the NDP swept the Alberta election, winning 53 seats and unseating many Progressive Conservative incumbents in the process, Conservatives in Ottawa were feeling the impact.
"Someone said ... it's Albertastan now," MacKay told reporters after Wednesday's caucus meeting.
- Alberta election 2015: NDP sings for joy, Harper's caucus like 'morgue'
- 'Albertastan' comment from Peter MacKay mocked on social media
The off-handed comment soon took off on social media:
Comrades advised to travel by main highways only. Counter-revolutionary Wildrose units ranging freely in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NewAlbertastan?src=hash">#NewAlbertastan</a> countryside.—@jskrimshire
In Soviet Alberta, gas fracks you <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NewAlbertastan?src=hash">#NewAlbertastan</a>—@fruinjuice
And then there was this:
Who will make us People's Republic of Albertastan T-Shirts? Because I would totally buy one. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/abvote?src=hash">#abvote</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/cdnpoli?src=hash">#cdnpoli</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/abndp?src=hash">#abndp</a>—@Paulatics
Enter Laura Lynn Johnston, an Edmonton graphic designer who is no stranger to turning the comments of political pundits into wearable fashion.
Following National Post columnist Chris Selley's 2013 description of Edmontonians as "twitchy-eyed, machete-wielding savages," Johnston wasted no time turning the message into a t-shirt.
"Almost immediately, there were five friends and followers of mine who tweeted (Simons') tweet at me and said, 'We need a shirt and you're the one to do this,'" Johnston said with a laugh.
She got to work right away, coming up with a design of oil drops emblazoned above the words 'The People's Republic of Albertastan.'
Buyers are also able to pick the shirt's colour. So far, Johnston says orange has been particularly popular — but not many blue shirts are being requested.
Commissions from the sales are going to the Stollery Children's Hospital.
"And I don't think that I really need to explain why I chose that charity in light of everything's that happened in the media this week," Johnston said with a suppressed laugh. On Friday, a group of business leaders which has donated to the PC Party in the past spoke out, suggesting that charities would suffer if the NDP were elected.
But while Johnston is happy to have found a second audience for her politics-based fashion designs, she wants it known that she's not trying to take anyone down a peg either.
"The big take home with it is we're all just having fun with this and we're definitely not trying to offend anybody."