How to Design a T-Shirt: The Ultimate Guide

How to Design a T-Shirt: The Ultimate Guide

Having the perfect custom t-shirt for your event can have a huge impact. Whether you’re a small business owner, throwing an epic party for friends, organizing a team sport, or planning a summer camp for kids, providing your guests with custom t-shirts is a great way to bring people together, stand out and look good. So, you know you need a custom t-shirt for your event, but how can you make sure you plan it to a “tee”? 

We’ll help you get started. Read our ultimate guide to designing the perfect custom t-shirt and learn how you can see through your t-shirt idea from design to print to distribution.

What’s your why?

Start with identifying your event and be clear on its purpose. Is it a promotional event? If so, you’ll need to design a very catchy logo that attracts potential customers. If it’s a personal party, try to tie in an inside joke or something humorous or witty that’s sure to be a hit with friends and create a lasting memory. If your event is a charitable fundraiser, a few inspirational words may go a long way. It’s important to pin down your purpose and link your themes, choice of words, colors, and images based on this. What’s your why, and how can you portray this effectively on a custom t-shirt?

What’s your budget?

Budget is often one of the biggest factors to consider and can really determine the size and scope of your project. Here are some important things you will need to take into account when determining your budget:

  • How many t-shirts do you need to get printed? 
  • What is the quality of fabric you will be using? 
  • Are you opting for digital or screen printing (read up on our last blog on this topic here!) 

These decisions will help you plan a realistic and achievable goal without compromising on your quality and vision.

What’s your audience?

This question ties in strongly with figuring out your “why”. Knowing your purpose will help you determine your target audience, and this will guide many of your important t-shirt design decisions. For example, are your custom t-shirts for adults or children? Is your audience predominantly male, female, or both? Would your audience prefer a t-shirt with a fashion fit (or slim fit), or a more standard unisex style? Would they prefer sweatshirts, long-sleeves, or short-sleeve tees? Would they wear a shirt that incorporates bold designs and colors, or something more subtle? Knowing your audience well will make it much easier for you to plan out the perfect design that is suited just for them.

What are your design specifics?

They may seem like minor details, but the little things make a big difference. Explore your font options. Typography can impact both the look and feel of a t-shirt. The right font can really drive home your message and tie in well with your theme. Explore with different color options as well, for both the fabric and the print. Would it be more effective to have a white or black t-shirt with a colorful image or logo, or instead a bright t-shirt with a monochromatic image or logo? Do you want your image to have a simple design or a more complex one? Do you want the print to be shiny, glittery, matte, or embroidered? These decisions would also influence the type of printer you choose (which, in turn, is related to your budget).

Who will review it?

Once you’ve made all of the above decisions and have your idea down pat, it’s always good practice to have your design reviewed. It’s helpful to get a few different opinions from people with diverse backgrounds – perhaps from a potential customer or someone you think may fit your target audience, as well as someone that knows your business or event for a more professional opinion. Ask them questions to see if your vision has been fulfilled. Is it attracting the right people? Did your message get across? Would they wear it? If the answers to these questions are yes, it’s time to get printing!

Who will do the printing?

Find a company with expertise in a wide variety of printing techniques and experience with different printers and fabrics that you can rely on to accomplish your custom-made t-shirt design. Make sure you’re comfortable communicating your vision and your needs with them, and ask for samples of the finished product before finalizing your bulk order. 

Contact A2Z Wholesale Apparel to request a quote to get your custom t-shirt design created today! Our team of design experts will help guide you through the whole process and help bring your vision to life!