T-shirts are ubiquitous to life on Earth. We dare say that every single person on the planet wears or has worn a t-shirt before. It’s a uniform garment that fits in with nearly any occasion, save of course for weddings and funerals. It helps that there are literally billions of t-shirts circulating on the market. While this is great news for consumers, it’s not so great news for you — a t-shirt designer.
The truth is that it’s awfully difficult to get your t-shirt design noticed by the masses of attention deficit souls on this planet. Just think of all the competition! However, while it’s difficult, it’s certainly not impossible, as you are about to see.
Start With Quality Materials
This should go without saying, but always start with quality materials. Invest in quality, resistant fabrics that keep their shape and can handle lots of washing. Also take the time to learn about the material you choose by testing it, washing it, drying it, wearing it, etc. The goal is to ensure that the material meets your standards. Remember, if the material doesn’t meet your standards, then it’s likely not going to meet your customers’ standards either. And selling subpar products is a great way to NOT secure loyal customers.
Play Around With Both Complicated & Simple Designs
There’s no rule that says all your t-shirts must maintain the exact same theme or style. The two styles in particular we want to talk about right now are COMPLICATED ones and SIMPLE ones.
Complicated designs tend to be instant eye-catchers, especially when they contain plenty of colour. Plus, complex designs that are pieced together properly show talent and skill, two things any t-shirt wearer appreciates. Just make sure that your complicated design does not turn into an overcomplicated one!
However, do not discount the power of simple designs either. Because simple designs contain so few elements, these few elements capture the viewer’s full attention. The key therefore with a simple design is to ensure those few elements are really, really spectacular!
Utilize A Message
The most popular t-shirts usually tie themselves to some sort of message. Consider the following examples:
- Slogans: T-shirts are like billboards for the chest. For some people, this serves as a great opportunity to share their innermost thoughts with the world. So it goes without saying that it might make sense to use slogans and statements on your t-shirt (from heart-warming ones to outright obnoxious ones, depending on your target demographic) to attract those with a boisterous soul.
- Causes: Your t-shirt design can also be used to bring attention to a cause like breast cancer awareness. The size of your target audience decreases when you choose such a niche route, but you are apt to secure loyal customers. The only stipulation is that if you want to use your designs to stand up for a case, you’re going to have to make all your designs revolve around the specific cause you choose.
- Graphics: Whether simple or complex in design, graphic art T-shirts get noticed. And so long as you aren’t using copyrighted material, graphic art can be virtually anything you want it to be, from your own company logo to abstract art… the choice is endless.
Take Advantage Of Contrast
To make a t-shirt design stand out, you need to make it bold! One way to do this is by employing the use of contrasting colours like red on yellow, charcoal on royal blue or lime green on hot pink. These combinations might seem odd at first thought, but their contrasting nature actually makes them work really well. The key to this methodology lies in utilizing a fairly simple design. Otherwise, if you go with a more complicated one, you might end up with so many contrasting colours that you give your customers a headache!
Design Graphics At Actual Size
We’re going to assume that you’re using some sort of computer software to create your t-shirt design. If so, make certain that the graphics in the program are made at the exact same size you picture them being on your t-shirt. If you don’t take care of these specifications on the backend, then the person or company responsible for printing the t-shirt might wind up using his or her own judgment. That could lead to results that you do not like.
Last but not least, make sure you seek feedback and criticism before you take your design to the market. If your friends and family members aren’t really feeling your design, then it might be a good idea to tweak it. Just make sure you do not take the criticism personally. Criticism should be used to better yourself and your designs, not start an emotional war of words!
The world is brimming with t-shirts, which means you must be on your top game if you want to make a dent in the t-shirt industry. Is it impossible to do? Nope! Is it very difficult to do? YES! It takes a concerted effort, not to mention genuine artistic talent and skill. However, it can be done, assuming you’re willing to take the time to piece together a perfect t-shirt design!