It seemed innocent enough when I made my first purchase of an In-n-Out t-shirt in the early 90s. I was hungry and running low on clean clothing while photographing the Cajon Sub west of Victorville. The iconic California burger joint provided one-stop shopping: lunch and a clean shirt for less than $15.

Since then, the acquisition of an In-n-Out shirt has become a tasty and practical annual tradition. They're affordable and likeable enough, and a style statement in their own right. The shirts have been variously offered in white and black over the years (only one color per year), the delightful drive-in themed graphics are different every year and you can still get lunch (a Number 3 with onions, please) and a shirt for about $17. What’s not to like?

Not everyone in our house shares my sense of style (You’re not going out in that!), or the fact that at one-per-year, an undeniable level of wardrobe domination takes effect as the decades pass. Spousal intervention is inevitably inflicted upon the aging and tattered members in a sartorial process of natural selection. But the numbers are strong and despite the ongoing controversy the stock replenished annually.

The tradition lives on. I’m happy to report that this year’s crisp-white edition — served up with a Number 3 and onions at the San Bernardino location — is in the house.
Quality you can taste since 1948.