If you’ve decided at any point in recent history to design your own t-shirt, chances are it won’t have escaped your attention just how much easier it is to go about these days. There’s an absolute ton of software – much of which is free of charge – along with a thousand and one brands and businesses just waiting to step in and help get the job done. It’s simple, it’s affordable and it’s incredibly enjoyable – the only downside being that none of the above in any way guarantees an effective result.
Even when creating a t-shirt that only you yourself will ever wear, it’s still the kind of job that tends to be gone about with extreme care and pride. After all, if the resulting garment is one you’re in no way happy to admit was your own work, there’s really no point in bothering in the first place. Of course, there will always be those who seem to be able to throw out endless incredible designs without even thinking about it, while others struggle their entire lives to come up with anything even remotely creative.
Regardless of which end of the spectrum you happen to fall on, what kinds of tips do the professionals offer when it comes to creating more effective custom t-shirt designs?
1 – Take Your Time
Well, the first and most important tip you’re ever likely to come across is that of taking as much time as necessary to come up with something you’re happy with. The moment you find yourself working against the clock is the moment the result and its quality cease being your priority. You basically have two choices – work toward a deadline or work toward a result that you’re 100% happy with. So unless you’re creating a t-shirt for business purposes and have a genuine deadline that must be met, there’s really no excuse for not taking your time.
2 – Leave It, Come Back to It
It takes a great deal of self-control and patience, but one of the very best ways of validating your design and ensuring you are happy with it is to leave it a while and come back to it later. This can be tricky as the moment you believe you’ve nailed it, you’ll want to get it printed ASAP. However, it’s a much better idea to walk away for a while, maybe sleep on it for a day or two and then see how you feel about it. Sometimes you’ll be bowled over – other times you’ll wonder what the hell you were thinking.
3 – Simplicity Rules
If you realistically think about the most famous and memorable designs, logos and branding-efforts of all time, it’s impossible to ignore the fact but the overwhelming majority of them are quite extraordinarily simple. While there’s much to be said for getting creative and artistic, simplicity almost always tends to rule the roost when it comes to effective garment prints and designs in general. As such, and particularly when new to this kind of thing, it’s important to not get too carried away with unnecessary complexities as this will almost always steer the project in the wrong direction.
4 – For You, For Them?
One of the most important considerations to bear in mind throughout the design process is that of who exactly you are creating the design for. Does it only need to mean something to you, are you gunning for something that your close friends will understand or would you prefer it to appeal to the masses? This consideration alone should make it entirely easier for you to come up with that perfect design.
5 – Consider Colours
Never forget that plain white and black are by no means the only two colors out there when it comes to the t-shirts you’ll be printing on. It’s all-too common for newbies to fall into the trap of only ever using a plain-white background/canvas one and not even considering the other color choices out there – many of which could do far more justice to the overall design and effect.
6 – Proper Printing
Last but not least, there’s really nothing worse than investing your heart, soul and indeed plenty of your time in a genuinely fabulous design, only for it then to be laid to waste thanks to a poor-quality printing process. It may be incredibly cheap these days to pick up the basic supplies required to print your own garments at home, but it is also just as affordable to have the professionals take care of things on your behalf while guaranteeing outstanding results, every time.