CAFFEINATED: Like many deadline-oriented workers, designers tend to operate in highly caffeinated environments, so it’s fitting that Starbucks has recruited three up-and-comers to design one-of-a-kind T-shirts. Alexander Wang, Sophie Theallet and Billy Reid, winners of the past three CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund awards have created tops inspired by the brand to celebrate its 40th anniversary. Each stayed true to his or her DNA — Wang’s design resembles a spilled cup of coffee; Theallet’s has a fitted shape with grosgrain ribbon, and Reid’s plays up prep with a worn-in feel. The limited edition $85 T-shirts are made in the U.S. and are sold at and through select Nordstrom stores while supplies last.

Nordstrom and Starbucks are supporters of the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund. Each designer received a fee for participating, but more than anything the venture gave them the chance “to give back a little bit which is in keeping with the spirit of the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund,” said CFDA executive director Steven Kolb. And apparently the trio did not take the task lightly. Theallet said, “I was inspired by the global community, and all the connections involved around a cup of Starbucks coffee.”

This story first appeared in the September 20, 2011 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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