“It really started peaking about a month ago,” said Amy Maniatis, vice president of marketing at the online seller Cafepress.com.

“You see it as a direct response to some of the promising messages that happened a year ago. Whereas we had the campaign of Obama centered around hope, and it was a very optimistic message, now they’re asking: ‘How’s that hopey-changey thing going?'”…

Pro-Obama gear is still selling well, she said, “but now we’re seeing a much larger swing toward the critical designs. It will be lighthearted as commentary on his gaffes as in ‘Acted Stupidly,’ ” a play on his remarks about the Cambridge, Mass., police officer who arrested Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., “or with folks reacting to headlines or what is going on with the economy.”