Football News

Reimagining Football Jerseys: The Footy Buckets Story

Footy Buckets is an up-and-coming Irish fashion project that you have most likely come
across on TikTok or Instagram in the past year.

Founded by 31-year-old Ryan Mulligan from Monaghan, Footy Buckets is a fantastic
way for football fans to show their colours in a unique and sustainable way. It was a
video on social media app Tiktok that gave Ryan, who already ran a successful
Liverpool online merchandise store known as ‘Kop Clobber’ the idea of starting Footy

“The idea for Footy Buckets first came around when I saw somebody on TikTok turning
an old fleece into a bucket hat. I thought it was a really cool and unique idea and
thought I’d love to get one of those myself. I knew my mum was a great sewer, so I
began looking around my house to see if there were any items of clothing I didn’t wear
anymore that I could turn into a bucket hat. I started thinking of the mountains and
mountains of old football jerseys I had and thought one of those would be great to turn
into a bucket hat.

“At this time, I already had a business called Kop Clobber which is all Liverpool
merchandise. When mum made a couple of samples of the bucket hats, I thought I
could sell these on Kop Clobber, so originally it was only really Liverpool themed hats to

Although Ryan originally sold Liverpool themed bucket hats, the demand from intrigued
fans online grew, with each new message requesting a different club from around the
world. Despite some hesitance, Ryan knew that he had something special on his hands
with these bucket hats and decided to bite the bullet and create Footy Buckets.

“Things eventually grew to a stage where non-Liverpool fans would message the page
asking if it was possible to make bucket hats for clubs like Celtic, Chelsea and
Manchester United. As things kept growing, I was thinking I was going to have to set up
a new page for all clubs rather than just Liverpool. Honestly, I was slightly reluctant to
do this at first because I had spent so long building up a following of thousands on Kop
Clobber and the thought of starting a new journey with Footy Buckets was a bit
daunting. I decided to go ahead with it and as soon as I began the Footy Buckets page
it was flying. It was definitely the correct decision in the end.”

Ryan quickly saw his Footy Buckets social media pages grow and gain more followers
after each new video. Knowing he was onto something with major potential, he continued to post new content and after a video of Ryan creating a Dutch club themed bucket hat went viral, things really took off.

“One of the main reasons Footy Buckets grew so quickly was because of TikTok. I
would create videos of me cutting up the shirts and showing the process of turning the
jerseys into bucket hats. I kept going and eventually a video I created where I turned a
Dutch club Heracles Almelo’s jersey into a bucket hat went viral, gaining over one
million views. That one video helped me gain thousands of followers and made many
fans of the video message me asking if they could have a bucket hat made for their
favourite club.”

With things moving fast, Ryan knew he would have to start begging to source more and
more jerseys in order to keep up with the demand. Fortunately, this problem was solved
as many of Ryan’s customers were willing to send in their own jerseys to Monaghan to
have them turned into stylish bucket hats.

“At this time, I was still trying to source jerseys for the company, but some customers
were offering to send their own shirts to me to create the bucket hats and then send the
final product back to them. I would say around 80% of the sales are done this way now
which is brilliant!”

Things have only continued to develop since then for Ryan and Footy Buckets. With
some of the biggest football clubs in the world reaching out to collaborate with the Footy
Buckets brand.

“A highlight of mine would be working with some football clubs themselves to create
bucket hats. That original viral video helped me gain a lot of Dutch followers so a few
Dutch clubs have contacted me since then. I am actually currently working on a project
with Manchester City, they have sent me over 70 of their training tops from last season
which the players wore, so I am in the process of turning them into bucket hats and
sending them back over.”

One of the main reasons Ryan enjoys running Footy Buckets is because of the
sustainability and repurposing it gives to football jerseys that are either not in a good
enough condition to be worn or just simply unwanted. With how many football shirts are
made each year per club, it is easy for many of them to end up going to waste.

“At the start I would go to charity shops and browse eBay looking for job lot football
jerseys for a good price. I would often find a lot of kid-sized jerseys for sale or jerseys maybe with a person’s name on the back that isn’t going to be worn by anyone else in
the future.

“The sustainability element is really important and is one of the highlights of the
business for me personally. Currently the football shirt market is insane. When you think
about how many kits are made by every team each year, it is nearly four or five
including training shirts. I know when I was younger, I was always eager to get my
hands on the newest jersey and I’m sure things haven’t changed much since then. It is
just great to be able to run a business that concentrates on giving a second life to some
of these older jerseys.”

As we begin 2024, Footy Buckets are looking to expand their business to more than just
bucket hats!

“In terms of growth we actually have a few new products coming out soon. We plan on
creating boonie hats, five panel peak caps and also a ‘Peaky Blinders’ type of flat cap.”

Ryan is continuing to dream big and work hard on Footy Buckets, which is an inspiring
project that shows that there is always a new purpose for those items of clothing in your
home that may seem too old, ragged and unwearable.
To find out more about Footy Buckets, visit


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