MONTCLAIR, N,J. (WCBS 880) — A Montclair mom wanted to start up a business which was environmentally sound, engaged her creative side, fit in with her busy family and brought in some extra money.

So, Sue Zager created Eco Tees, giving pre-worn and sometimes stained T-shirts a new life.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Pat Farnack With Sue Zager
(Download the full interview HERE)

“We’re a T-shirt family and [if] you’re an active family, you tend to be a messy family,” said Zager. “I would find that we kept staining perfectly good T-shirts and I wouldn’t want to get rid of it. So, I tried to think of a way to sort of camouflage the stain.”

With the help of a little bleach, Zager created designs that would cover up the stains and salvage the shirts.

Zager finds new canvases to work on by going T-shirt hunting at local thrift stores to pick out pre-owned shirts that she could transform and sell.

“I knew that there were really healthy tees out there,” said Zager.

Before putting her personal touch on the shirts, Zager will wash them adding Borax, an eco-friendly deodorizer, to the laundry detergent.

The shirts are currently available at stores in Montclair and for special order for events like birthdays or Bar and Bat Mitzvahs.

“I always like experimenting. I’m always looking for inspiration for new designs,” Zager said. “I’d say I’m a mirco-cottage industry.”

To find out how to get yourself an Eco Tee, e-mail Sue at

What do you think of this business format? Would you buy one of the shirts? Let us know below…


Leave a Reply