Outside of Kansas it is hard to find K-State merchandise, here in Oklahoma it is all OU and Oklahoma State at the sports stores, and in Colorado it is Broncos, and the other pro teams. What makes finding K-State stuff even harder is that K-State purple is a very distinct purple, and alot of companies that put out mass collegiate apparel don't realize that it is easy to tell when they get the color purple wrong. So I'll do my part here to point out the differences of the two colors.
First I will start with the right K-State Purple. Now I'm sure that this purple isn't the exact right color, but I tried to match the color on my monitor with the color of my hat, which is the right color. The first thing to notice is that K-State purple is a blue purple instead of a red purple. I think the proper name for blue purple is indigo purple.
Now this is the most commonly used wrong purple that is used for K-State. It is most definitely a red purple (violet purple) and seems a bit sun faded compared to true K-State purple. Alot of times K-State items that are discounted are of this color.
I have a couple of ideas why people get K-State purple wrong. The first is because the color is very hard to replicate on TV. It seems that there are two main options when most networks decide to broadcast our games on TV. The first is to make the purple look almost black, which I think looks fine. However, the more common color that gets shown as is that red purple that is certainly not the right color. It is a rare case when the color is actually broadcast correctly on TV. The second problem is that K-State purple is sort of a unique purple color in the sports world. It is similar to the Colorado Rockies, maybe a bit bluer, but most sports teams, such as the Phoenix Suns actually use the red purple instead. This means that, unlike say red or kelly green, there has to be someone who knows what color they should be using. And I bet most of the times companies just get something purple without actually looking at the color. The final problem is that it seems even some apparel that starts out the correct purple color fades into the red purple (while some really good quality stuff fades into just a lighter version of K-State purple). So some of the problem at stores could be just old apparel that started out the right color but have changed slowly into the wrong color over time.
I could go on about how K-State ink purple isn't the same color as normal K-State purple, and what colors should be paired with purple (K-State's only official color is purple), but I can tell from your face that you have had enough of this topic. Cheerio.