T-Shirt Design

T-Shirt Design Guide

Creating a custom t shirts design is an enjoyable activity that enhances your creativity, and could generate income if you would try to market the designs you made. If you’re planning to send your design to a shirt printing company or making a custom t-shirt design for personal reasons, you may still be able to create a shirt design on your computer. Here’s a guide on how to design your t-shirt.

Step 1 – Conceptualization of the Design

Brainstorming about how your design will appear is an important aspect. You should be able to identify what your design will initially represent. There are three common types:

  • Commercial – Companies or shops that sell shirts.
  • Specialized – Organizations, family reunions or charity associations.
  • Personal – Custom T-shirts.

Step 2 – Digitally Creating the Design

The most popular software used in t-shirt designing is Adobe Photoshop. It offers a variety of use of tools that enable artists to create designs. You may look for articles or watch videos that provide tutorials on how to use the software.

Step 3 – Printing Your Design

Here are different ways to print your design:

  • Screen-Printing 

This method uses a printing screen available at art shops. The screen is stretched and stapled across a wooden frame. The actual design will be created using emulsion and light bulbs. The application of the ink will be swiped from top to bottom using a squeegee.

  • Stenciling 

This uses a craft knife to cut or slice out the black spots of the design that has been printed black and white on a sticker. It also uses flat cardboard inside the shirt to evenly apply the paint on the t-shirt using a sponge brush.

  • Bleach Painting 

This method uses bleach. The shirt is laid flat on a table or surface. The guideline of the design will be initially sketched on the surface of the shirt to avoid errors in actual designing. It will then be traced using a brush that has been submerged in bleach. The results will show once the shirt dries up.

  • Digital Printing 

This is the most commonly used method of commercial printing for shirts, which uses a printing machine.

Important Things to Remember

  • Photos

If in case you need to put a person’s picture in the design, you need to ensure that you were permitted to use it to avoid getting yourself into trouble.

  • Copyrighted Images 

Using copyrighted logos, figures, or images in your t-shirt design without the permission of the owner or company who owns them (especially if you are going to use them for commercial purposes) could get you sued. Imitating one’s brand or logo could deceive buyers, illegally raising your profit, and reducing the original brand’s sales. It’s illegally making a cheaper copy of the company’s design, which is a no-no.

  • Stolen Designs 

Copying the entire t-shirt design without any permission from the original owner can also get you into another trouble. It is like using copyrighted images, but bigger. If you wish to use the entire design, you must have permission to do so whether you will print it for personal or commercial purposes.

Final Thoughts

Now that you know this guide and the things you have to remember, you can finally design that t-shirt that you wanted to do. It is nice to wear something you can be proud of.

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