40/52: Kudzu Palace

No one ever wants to eat there…


Each week for a year, I’m designing a shirt and releasing it on my Threadless store. This is the design for week 40.


When I was little, we lived in Stanley, North Carolina. Every so often on the weekend, we’d make the trek over to Gastonia to have dinner, go shopping or catch a movie. We’d drive along a road where every tree seemed to be covered in kudzu. If you aren’t familiar with kudzu, it’s a vine that grows relatively uncontrolled across the southeastern United States. It’s legendarily impossible to kill.

At some point on the trip, my dad would ask us where we wanted to eat. He’d give us three options, but the third option was always “Kudzu Palace.” Kudzu Palace didn’t exist, of course, but every time, my siblings and I would yell “Not Kudzu Palace!”

Now that I have kids, I often offer up Kudzu Palace as a dining option. Surprisingly, they never pick it either.

When I started this project, I actually planned to do a bunch of fake restaurants and brands. Kudzu Palace was one of the original ideas from my first set of sketches. The project has taken a different direction and the designs have been more conceptual, but I’m glad I finally got around to creating a shirt for my favorite fictional restaurant. Now, I’m wondering what’s on the menu.

You can purchase “Kudzu Palace” from my Threadless store.


Bob Wertz writes about design, technology and pop culture at Sketchbook B. Bob is a Columbia, South Carolina-based designer, creative director, college instructor, husband and dad. He’s particularly obsessed with typography, the creative process and the tools we use to create. He's currently in the middle of a project to design a new shirt a week for an entire year. Follow Bob on TwitterInstagram and Micro.Blog.