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The Fine Print: Let's talk about tees!

How to Use Color Theory for T-Shirt Designs

color theory for t-shirt designs

We’re all somewhat familiar with how colors can affect emotion. Using colors to our advantage in any sort of marketing including branded business t-shirts is a sophisticated approach. How colors are perceived by individuals is subjective to their own personal experiences. However, some colors are commonly known to have specific influences over emotions in general. Colors are an intimate and inseparable part of how consume the world around us.

Several colors can affect multiple emotional responses. This can be in conjunction with other color combinations or alone. For instance, black by itself is frequently associated with luxury or elegance. But pairing it with gray derives an elegant and masculine feel.

Some colors are highly popular regardless of a person’s age or background while some other colors popularity are directly impacted by factors like culture and geography.

Bright colors are typically associated with positive energy like happiness and strength while dark colors are associated with malevolence or sadness.

The color black while widely associated with darker emotions is quite popular amongst younger people. If your target demographic for t-shirt sales is a youthful segment, then black should be considered in your designs, whether as part of the graphic or the color of the t-shirt product.

If you’re trying to create a feeling with your t-shirt design, also consider that colors convey temperature. Blues and greens are cool. Reds, oranges, and yellows are decidedly warmer.

Rarely does a color invoke zero emotional response. Green is one of the most popular colors because it’s associated with feelings of calmness and serenity.

Yellow is associated with happiness, energy, and positivity. Blue is next on the scale of positive emotional impact relaying feelings of peace and tranquility. Blue can also invoke a negative response with its relation to sadness and isolation.

Red is in the middle of the emotional spectrum with lots of positivity with its relation to love and romance but also exudes the other end of the emotional spectrum with feelings of anger and rage.

Purple is on the lower end of the popularity scale with emotional responses ranging from tranquility to boredom. Here is an infographic with colors and the emotions they can elicit. Feel free to share online or download to print.

psychology of color inforgraphic

Sources

ColorPsychology.Org

Canva

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