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The Fine Print: Let's talk about tees!

Inspiring Creative Resources for T-Shirt Artists

graphic design

Finding inspiration and tutorials for t-shirt design can be really time consuming, especially if you’ve never researched it before. Knowing how to create and save files correctly for t-shirt printing is every bit as important as providing the right assets to any other type of printer. We’ve researched and found some great resources especially for t-shirt artists that will help you in everything from your design vision and creativity, to more technical requirements of providing t-shirt art ready for print.

It’s important to stay up to date so most resources are current; however a few golden oldies are included simply because the information is good. Be sure to bookmark this page and share with your social community because sharing these resources IS caring.

Besides offering a great variety of fantastic tutorials on the topic of design in general, you will find a few tutorials that are t-shirt art specific.

See this tutorial that will help you to hone your illustration skills and provides tips to keep your printing costs down by using a limited color palette.

Featuring a step by step tutorial on how to prepare your t-shirt art for printing that will help control printing costs and ensure a happy printer/customer relationship. Check out some of their other topics too, this site is a virtual treasure trove for t-shirt artists.

Featuring tutorials, templates, vectors, textures and more.

Features design inspiration for all types of designers but this particular tutorial is awesome in its simplicity plus it's a retro design tutorial which is really hot right now.

An awesome tutorial detailing how to create fruit vectors from simple shape composition, perfect for summertime design!

A tutorial how to make orange peel text to compliment your fruity summer design!

Learn how to easily make symmetrical patterns to capitalize on the fancy print trend.

See a time saving tutorial for creating custom lettering and vector illustration via the pathfinder tool in Illustrator.

Tons of inspiration of all kinds but checkout the color palettes!

See hot designs from other artists. Looking for printsperation? You’ve got it!

Check out this illustration search engine that only includes amazing stuff from artists. Type in the combination of your concept and the art style “illustration” and see what you find.

Do you have any resources you think should be added to this list? Email it in and we’ll review it!

Summer T-Shirt Inspiration for 2016

It’s summer time again and t-shirts and tank tops are all the rage to stay cool, comfortable, and confident for outdoor adventure and festival fun.

Matchy, matchy with hair and t-shirts could be fashion overkill so we recommend picking complimentary or contrasting colors. Although black is not a traditional color for summer, it looks amazing against these dreamy hues.

Sweet Nostalgia Palette
sweet nostalgia

Sweet nostalgia is a summer color palette that contains sea green, peach, chestnut, golden brown, and baby yellow. Combinations of these colors induce memories of summer vacations and romance. Choose Bella short sleeve jersey crew neck in seafoam blue as your base canvas for this palette.

Desert Bloom Palette
desert bloom

Desert Bloom is a fresh take on neutrals that embraces relaxed tradition and marries it with bold new fashion colors. Think soft taupe, marigold, moonstone blue, coffee bean, olive, and sand. Start with Next Level The Perfect Tee in Light Olive for this look.

Backyard Brights
backyard brights

This is the color palette for those looking for a punch! While canary yellow doesn’t scream look at me, pairing it with Candy Apple Red or Electric Blue will. Periwinkle and Grass Green compliment while not overwhelming. Start with Next Level The Boyfriend Tee in vibrant yellow.

Make your own t-shirt or tank top with our clip art or your uploaded graphics and our new fonts in the design studio!

Check out some of our ideas available to edit or order as-is on trendy t-shirt and tank top apparel products. Save your t-shirt art on your favorite t-shirt or tank top option. If you can’t find your favorite product type or fit on our t-shirt design website, reach out to our friendly and responsive customer service team. We’ll do our best to find the perfect custom apparel option for your summer t-shirt concept.

Take me to the Ocean
mermaid t-shirt
Peace, Love, Sandy Feet
peace, love, sandy feet t-shirt
Something Beautiful
something beautiful t-shirt

Bar and Restaurant T-Shirts

restaurant uniform printers

Uniforms are really valuable for practical reasons of course because they help your customers identify staff. Choosing what kind of uniforms to provide is part of your business culture. T-shirts are great for a casual bar or restaurant atmosphere and are typically cheaper to purchase too. Embroidered polos and work shirts are suitable for more formal dining or cocktail lounges but usually cost more to purchase and require more production time.

As the owner of a small bar or restaurant, you work really hard to make your offerings distinctive from other local eateries and pubs and you know the value of word-of-mouth business. Your staff’s uniforms can help spread the word too and encourage customers to take action they might not think about doing to support your business.

happy hour t-shirts

Printed t-shirts are extremely versatile as a marketing tool because you can feature aspects of your business that might get overlooked on text heavy menus or tabletop signs. Use t-shirts to promote Happy Hour and signature dishes. Maybe your lunchtime customers never return after work simply because they haven’t considered it. Or they’ve been ordering the same dish because they think they know what they want and never look at the menu to see your signature dishes.

Contemporary t-shirt printing techniques make it possible to reproduce high quality photo art on fabric to showcase your mouth watering dishes and cocktails.

burger place t-shirts

Print your social hashtags and accounts on t-shirts. You can incentivize social interaction by asking people to take pictures of the restaurant, their dishes, and drinks and offer them a real time discount for doing it.

hashtag t-shirts

Reselling your bar or restaurant T-shirt design may be something you’ve never thought about. Design, print quality, and apparel product choice are critical in making an appealing, must-have article of clothing though. Work with a graphic designer to come up with an attractive t-shirt art concept or relevant slogan and have them printed up. Ordering t-shirts in bulk allows you to resell your t-shirts as and additional source of revenue.

Of course the real value added result of reselling your restaurant or bar t-shirts is the exposure your business will receive as your customers wear them around friends, colleagues, and family. Instead of word-of-mouth, you have word-of-wear. Contact us today to discuss print and embroidery options for restaurant and bar uniforms.

So You Want To Start A T-Shirt Brand

tshirt brands

T-shirts are an in-demand apparel product for comfort and self-expression, and most likely always will be. The humble t-shirt started out as a form of underwear that became outerwear and was popularized during World War II. T-shirt stardom continued to rise with glamorization from Hollywood icons like Marlon Brando and James Dean which resulted in making it a wardrobe staple.

The meteoric rise of t-shirt designs and sales make it a very attractive possibility for entrepreneurs with awesome design skills and fashion sense. However, there are a few things to consider before you bulk print t-shirts and start selling.

Understanding your potential consumer is critical

Who is your target audience? If you’re hoping to sell to college age people, think about what college age consumers are interested in. This hold true for the design absolutely but also for the apparel product you want it printed on.

There are cheap t-shirts that a lot of people can afford but choosing a product solely on its affordability isn’t always the right strategy. We’ve learned working with lots of t-shirt brands that quality is a worthy consideration, especially if you want repeat business.

niche shirts

Sorority consumers are looking for high fashion, fraternity consumers are looking for the same and comfort. Don’t make the mistake of saving up front and losing repeat business because your apparel product of choice tends to shrink after washing or is a boxy cut that fashion minded individuals won’t appreciate.

For design strategy, coming up with a totally unique idea is going to be tough, however designing is not always about originality. Sometimes your design can stand out from the rest because of your font choice, color composition or even high end print methods like glitter or metallic

A great design won’t take off without marketing

The digital age is an unprecedented playground for marketers. Promotional gateways that made it extremely tough for small businesses to gain a foothold are really no longer barriers with communities like Instagram, Snapchat and Pinterest. You don’t need a lot of money to promote but plan to spend an extensive amount of time marketing your t-shirts.

jumping into branding

If designing for a specific niche, compile a list of relevant and trending hashtags to accompany your posts. Starting locally narrows down your chances of huge, quick gains but building a following of happy customers that will refer you to their friends will help you build a solid backing.

tshirt brand marketing

Networking with the right people is a great way to build-of-mouth business. Again, consider your target audience. Go where they hang out, start conversations with business owners, and wear your product.

Developing a relationship with a screen printer

Starting your own t-shirt line or brand is going to require some upfront investment. Screen printing your own t-shirts requires a great deal of skill, energy, and equipment to get the job done right. We suggest you choose which business role you want to be in, a t-shirt line business owner or a professional screen printer. Trying to work both ends of the spectrum and being awesome at both is a huge and exhausting challenge.

When you’re ready to begin a conversation with an expert screen printer remember they have a business to run too. Offering to pay them for their work after you’ve made your sales or trying to negotiate bulk pricing for a really small run won’t get you very far, particularly if they are experts at their craft.

Most professional screen printers are happy to offer recommendations on the best priced, highest quality apparel choices for your chosen niche. You should expect to pay market price for samples of their work and as your business grows and you bring them repeat business with it, that’s when true negotiations on pricing can begin.

Easy Peasy Mother’s Day Gifts from the Heart

Mother’s day is almost here and for a lot of crazy busy people, panic mode will be setting in as it gets closer. We don’t want you to show up empty handed so we’ve rounded up a few easy, quick, and low cost gifts for mom from last minute kinds of kids. Check these out!

Vanilla Cupcake Flower Bouquet

Unless your mom is on a diet, her jaw will drop when you present her with this sweet surprise. And it doesn’t require buying a ton of craft supplies that you’ll never use again. Make it even easier by buying cake mix instead of making the cupcakes scratch.

Picture Perfect Planters

If mom has a sense of humor, she’ll love to see her family’s smiling faces on planters! This easy gift idea just requires a few artsy supplies and a photo printer but is well worth it for a really unique Mother’s Day gift.

Eggselent Glam Mirror

Make a super glam mirror with nothing but egg cartons? It sounds crazy but if you have a simple mirror and want mom to feel really special as she checks herself out, this project just requires some egg cartons and hot glue. The tutorial suggests taking the mirror out of its frame and gluing it to MDF board but if your mirror already has a fairly wide frame we bet you could get away with gluing your rosebuds directly to it. And as a bonus, mama gets some deviled eggs!

Mama Bear T-Shirt

A t-shirt designed just for mom’s personality is of course in order! The beauty of a personalized tee is mom can enjoy this for years to come. Go all out and upload your own images, add text, and pick the t-shirt product and size. Need it quick? Have it delivered in three days with lighting shipping.

Mommy Mug

What’s cuter than a hand painted mommy mug? This one will make all the other mother’s green with envy because it shows how much you care. A mug, some stickers, craft paints, and some sponge applicators make it easy and inexpensive.

Blooming Monogram

What’s more personalized than a monogram? Don’t turn your nose up at fake flowers; you’d be shocked at how real looking faux flowers are these days. This project will be done in no time and with very little investment!

Mom is an Avatar

Here’s something completely different! Make mom her own customized emoji she can use in texts and emails at BitMoji.