Waitress turns upset customer’s one star review into t-shirt and wears it into work

Daniella Claeys was shocked to discover a customer shamed her in a one-star review of the restaurant she works at – so she took matters into her own hands

A waitress who was accused of treating a family like ‘rubbish’ because their child was crying in the restaurant got the last word – by printing their scathing one star review on a t-shirt. Daniella Claeys was shocked to discover a customer named and shamed her in a one-star review of the London restaurant where she works, claiming she treated them like ‘rubbish’ and that they would ‘never be back’.

After admitting she was ‘openly uncomfortable’ about the ‘disruption caused by a family’s ‘screaming toddler’, the 24-year-old only realised how angry the mother was the next day when she saw the furious review. While Daniella was initially upset by the comments, she found humour in the situation and decided to order a personalised T-shirt online with the review printed on it for under £20.

During a shift at work, the server shared a video of her wearing the top on TikTok to show it off to laughing colleagues, which has now racked up 2.9 million views. The footage captures Daniella proudly showing off her tee while holding a serving tray and laughing, captioned ‘when you get a one star review for being a bad waitress so make a top out of it’.

Daniella claims that she is ‘serving for 14 hours of the day’ and therefore admits that the ‘chance that I might get something wrong is quite high’, so feels that her stunt humanises waiting staff. Many users praised the waitress’s creative response to the harsh comments as the ‘best thing’, while other users defended the family for being made to feel so ‘uncomfortable’.

A personalised white t-shirt with a one-star review on it
Daniella Claeys, 24, with her personalised t-shirt (Image: Kennedy News/Dandanthexanman)

The waitress, who has worked at the London restaurant for three years, revealed she wanted to ‘laugh at’ the situation and not let it bring her down. Daniella, who lives in Tottenham, London, said: “At the time I was super upset. I never want to make anyone feel uncomfortable.

“But then I sent it to everyone I knew and put it on my Instagram. Everyone thought it was so funny. I made it into a T-shirt because I wanted to just laugh at the matter. I know I shouldn’t have reacted as much, but on a T-shirt it is f***ing funny.

“After I got the T-shirt, I wore it back to work during my break and we all had a laugh. If I was a really bad waitress, it wouldn’t have been as funny to my colleagues. Seeing as it was a one-off occasion and it was overblown, we could all just laugh at it.

“I wasn’t doing it out of malice or saying the woman was wrong, I was just laughing at what had happened. As much as I can laugh about it, my livelihood and how I make money is being a waitress and has been for 12 years.

“I’m serving for 14 hours of the day. The chance that I might get something wrong is quite high. I don’t think a review like that will ever happen again.”

Daniella admitted that she ‘should have handled the situation better’ on the shift in November 2023 but that it was just one of those days. Daniella said: “On this particular day I had a cold but came into work anyway. I could just hear this child screaming. It was a big family.

“The crying went on for a considerable amount of time and other staff members were aware of the disruption. Because of my migraine it just seemed to pierce through my ears. I think the family could see my discomfort. I’m not denying that.

“On reflection I should have handled it better but I was quite openly uncomfortable. I was saying to my manager that we should tell them to go into our heated terrace and calm the child down.

“Then they left super abruptly. The mother was angry and on her way out she was a little bit aggressive towards me. I only realised how bad the situation was when the review came in.”

A woman wearing a leather jacket posing in a white t shirt
Daniella Claeys says she probably should have handled the situation better (Image: Kennedy News/Dandanthexanman)

The 24-year-old revealed she wanted to share her experience online to relate to other servers. Daniella said: “Sometimes on a bad day one review can make you feel like you’re not good enough.

“I thought I could reframe this narrative and find some comedy and relate to others online who are in the same situation as me. It humanises the servers and the waiters that are often just not recognised. It is widely felt across hospitality that a lot of the time people talk to you as if you’re their personal server.

“I think people are able to laugh at bad experiences in hospitality. The stuff people experience is wild. I would have loved to make other T-shirts for other people working in hospitality because people were commenting on what customers have said to them.

“Waitressing is just not regarded as a high-skill job even though I truly believe it is. A lot of the time people don’t appreciate or recognise the effort we make. I have so many friends in hospitality that have to put up with a lot. There is quite a small margin for error in terms of getting service right.”

Many users praised Daniella’s comedic response to the review.

One user said: “That’s the best thing I’ve ever seen.”

Another user said: “I NEED THIS.”

A third user said: “Someone gave me a review calling me a bull shark one time Wish I did this.”

A fourth user said: “This caused me to look at the single 1 star review i’ve ever received and now i’m angry all over again.”