Creating Custom T-Shirts from Scratch


dream on dreamer
I love the print on this t-shirt, would like to design something similar 

Creating and selling customised t-shirts can be very lucrative for anyone that enjoys combining business with creativity. This is a great niche business to be in because people from all walks of life love wearing custom t-shirts. Getting started requires several key steps.

Choose a Design Theme

Figuring out what type of designs to create requires doing a bit of research. Take a look at some design concepts that others are selling successfully. This will give you ideas for your own custom designs. This type of research is fun, but also be careful not to get bogged down with information overload. You can also check out popular culture references for humorous sayings that may work well on a tee.

street style

Creating the Design

If you are gifted with design tools, you can probably put together a great looking graphic image fairly quickly. If you don't have any talent in this area, you can hire a talented graphic artist to create a design for you. Just give them all of the specifics about what you have in mind, including image, colour and wording details. If you are not good at design then you could consider pre-made machine embroidery designs which are easy to apply and can instantly customise any garment. 

potato prints
After we found some blank tees the little man and I created this with potato printing

Blank Shirts

You need to have a good source of quality blank t-shirts to print the designs on. Find an online vendor that sells affordable blank tees in bulk quantities. Ideally, the vendor will feature tees in all sorts of colours, sizes and styles. Take into consideration the target market for the shirts. Your design can be targeted to men, women, kids or both men and women.

Another consideration is how the design theme matches the style of the shirt. For example, a design that has a summery feel may be perfect for a short-sleeved or tank style.

Screen Printing or DIY Fabric Painting

Take your design and shirts to an expert screen printer to complete the final step or do some DIY printing at home with fabric paint. The screen printing process involves preparing the design for transfer onto the shirts. Speak with the screen printer ahead of time about which colour choices of shirts will make the design really pop.

To begin researching customizing options you can find a large assortment of blank t-shirts at an online shop that features top quality brands.

potato printing
Mr A happy with his custom t-shirt 

A supported post


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks so much :) Can't wait to see your new blog btw

      Laura x

  2. we had great fun creating tie dyed tees with the children a few years ago. Very labour intensive the way we did it though, so not great for a business.

    1. Oh tied -dyed t-shirts are a lot of fun, I am hoping to make a few this summer :)

      Laura x

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