T-Shirt Design Tips: How to Avoid the 11 Most Common Mistakes

Sometimes it’s ripped; it’s stained and sometimes full of holes. T-shirts come in various forms, styles and designs. Have you ever thought how interesting t-shirt designing process can be, how fun it can be to design a t-shirt. Moreover, have you ever wondered that t-shirt designing is the platform to discover your creative niche as a designer?  

T-shirt designing gives you an opportunity to flex your creative muscles. However, the task can be daunting mainly for newbies. Now, you might be wondering WHY? Why customizing a t-shirt is challenging when an individual has all the artistic skill, knowledge & is creative enough to implement their imaginative skills on a fabric. 

Well even with artistic approach and proficiency, it is difficult to achieve that greatness. Sadly, a lot of mistakes newbies and even a pro do affect the final outcome. But fortunately, there are some effective ways that individuals can use to avoid these common t-shirt designing mistakes. 

In this write-up, we have listed down the points that you should consider before designing your printed masterpiece. Some of the tips might seem obvious, and some might be news to you.  

Read on to know the most common mistakes that designers with much or no experience commit & how to avoid them:

  1. Poor-Quality Fabric

No matter whether you are designing the t-shirt for regular use or for any occasion, quality is the first thing to consider. Would you compromise with the quality of the fabric for cost? Would you ever like to wear an uncomfortable and itchy t-shirt? The fabric determines the quality of the product, it helps individuals differentiate between good and poor quality t-shirts. 

Remember the market is stocked with a plethora of fabrics, top-notch and shoddy material. All you need to do is market surveys to find fabric of premium-quality. Furthermore, you can approach a printing shop or a website that has earned a reputation of providing fabric of high quality. 

  1. Complex Design
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‘Simplicity at its best’! Consider this statement while practicing your creativity in textile design. Make sure that you don’t overload the t-shirt with text and graphics. Multiple colors in your design can hamper the shirt’s artistic appeal. 

Try to keep the tshirt designs simple with limited, alluring graphics and soothing colors. Make people understand the concept behind your creation with one or two liner text. 

  1. Sizing

Size matters when it comes to t-shirt customization. It can make or break a design. Opting for standing sizing is the most common mistake committed by designers and hence need to be avoided. Here is the trick: confirm the size by considering the nature of the design, the print size and the shape of the design. 

For example, when the print comes in square or circular shapes, it gives a better look to the garment even if they are of the size smaller than standard. Don’t forget to consider the style of the garment to be printed, t-shirts with limited print area. When you are designing a hoodie shirt with a front pocket, it should have a maximum height of 10 inches printing area. And for toddler tees consider the print area at maximum of 6 inches. 

  1. Too Many Colours is a Big No

Avoid using too many colours in your t-shirt, if you can’t justify it with your chosen design. The cost involved in adding too many colours can’t be ignored. It might raise your targeted expense of customizing the garment. 

Using one to three colours is the standard rule to maintain to give an aesthetic appeal to a shirt. Remember, colours are an integral part of your design. And if you go wrong in this step, you might pose visual risk to the item.

  1. Contrast Disparity
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Newbies even experienced designers make the mistake of balancing the contrast in design while customizing a t-shirt. Contrast in design refers to the visual difference between the darker and lighter parts of the image. The shades of color perfectly in sync can give a visually pleasing balance to the garment’s look. 

Using dark colours on dark color can ruin the visual appeal of the t-shirt. Never use blue text on a brown shirt as it hampers the shirt’s visual appeal. Go for a combination of red, white, black and blue to maintain contrast stability. 

  1. Bad Image quality

You might find it convenient to download images from the internet and use them in your design. But have you ever thought of checking the resolution of the images? Well, it is imperative for you to know that web images are usually low in resolution. They might look very attractive on screen, but you might not find it suitable for printing. 

Remember any images below 300 pixels will be blurred and therefore can be printed on t-shirts. You can also opt for borders or edges to decorate the image and give the t-shirt a fascinating look. 

  1. Placement

Even if you have an amazing design, wrong placement can kill the potential of the design. Now, you might be thinking where to implement the design, which part of the t-shirt should be printed? Well, consider getting your creative skill printed in front or back of the t-shirt. 

Non-standard placement can also do wonders. However, it is always better to talk to the printing company and seek their expert opinion before proceeding with the placement process. 

  1. Outmoded Styles
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It is essential to be in trend to make your product a hit amidst the crowd. Nobody wants to wear a t-shirt with the same conventional tagline or print. So, make sure that you are in tune with the fonts, colors and designs which are in vogue. This will help you customize a t-shirt of latest style and reach out the intended audience in a jiffy. 

  1. Poor Fonts

Have you ever thought of categorizing the fonts while customizing a shirt? Fonts being a crucial part of design need to be taken care. Fonts have their own significance and characteristics. Some fonts are tagged as professional while some fall under the informal group. You need to choose one that matches with the purpose of your t-shirt. 

For example, if you are designing a t-shirt for any corporate event, opt for serif fonts. On the other hand, when t-shirts are customized especially for fun events, you can play with the fonts and choose one that suits the purpose of the happening. Try to stick to maximum three fonts to get the printing done flawlessly. 

  1. Ban the Bannerism

You need to get it clear; it is a t-shirt, not any banner. Make sure that you don’t copy the banner content directly onto the garment. Instead take some time and think of the information that will convey the message, think of a tagline that will define the purpose of your design. 

The Final Word

Hopefully this list gives you a better idea of the common mistakes to avoid and obviously design better. In addition, to ease the process of t-shirt designing, you can download fonts, graphics from a user-friendly app, Designhill. Development of this app helps you get high-quality, elegant and attractive custom t-shirts without spending a fortune and that too in no time. 


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