8 Tips for Designing an Awesome T-shirt

tshirtTwo years ago, Forbes released an article explaining the benefits of creating well-made t-shirts with high quality materials. The article was based around a company who had created a way to bring custom t-shirts to the market while being cost-effective. This gave us the idea of creating an article where we list eight incredibly important factors to consider when designing your own t-shirt.

Understand The Software You Need
As you begin designing your t-shirt, understand the different paths you can take to send your design to a third-party manufacturer. Many of these companies have preferred methods of receiving designs. Amongst these methods, you can find a way that works with your creative process. There are different programs like Photoshop and Lightroom that allow you to export your design in a file type that is optimal for a manufacturer. On the other hand, if you prefer to hand-draw your design, find a partner that will optimally produce your drawing.

Find Your Theme
Every creative piece begins with a theme and designing a t-shirt is no exception, according to T-Shirt Champions. What do you want to relay to the consumer? Envision your idea and use it as a foundation for the rest of the creative process. Maintaining a solid theme throughout your creation will enable you to understand when you are moving away from a coherent idea or maintaining the integrity of your project.

Begin with a Color Palette
Now that you know your method of production, it is time to choose a color palette. This palette will be the collection of every color you plan to implement within your design. In order to create a great t-shirt, you need a palette that is pleasing to the eye. To do this, you can reference a color palette generator online or you can study how different colors interact with one another.

Composition of A Shirt
The different layers and scenes within your design must make sense. Creating a t-shirt is more than simply applying a picture to a shirt, you must understand where each layer must lie and what color should be given to said layer. This component will play off of the color palette. If you are using a dark color palette, consider moving from the darkest to the brightest color within your design or vice versa. This way, your design will be coherent and a pleasure to look at.

The Purpose of Your Shirt
In a recent New York Times article, the publication chronicled the success of a fashion designer who has created success for herself by attempting a solution-based fashion product. Differentiating yourself in the saturated market of fashion is nearly impossible. Alternatively, if you find yourself constantly running into problems with your clothing, design a shirt that fixes this problem. Chances are, you are not the only person experiencing the problem and you can earn some money by fixing it.

Develop Your Style
The greatest flaw many designers have is the inability to separate themselves from their influences. Creating a design that means something to you is far more beneficial than creating a trendy piece of clothing. As you continue developing your design, try to pinpoint what makes your art different than every other designer. Accessing this level of self-awareness will increase your designing capabilities and further differentiate you from your competition.

Balance Your Work
Balance is necessary in any art. Unbalanced work tends to be sloppy, unappealing, and hard to look at. Integrating balance within your designs will increase the quality of your design. There are two ways to incorporate balance in your design: symmetrical balance and asymmetrical balance. Symmetrical balance is done by mirroring what you have designed on one side of the shirt with the other. Alternatively, asymmetrical balance is done by offsetting large objects with small objects on each side of your design.

Don’t Overthink
Many artists tend to overthink their work. Unfortunately, thought tends to slow the creative process. If you are happy with your work, release it so the public can react!

Designing an awesome t-shirt is tough work. However, with time and effort, you can create something you are proud of and wear it every day. The most important aspect of art is to create something meaningful to you. Furthermore, have fun with it and don’t take it too seriously!