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How To Design Your Own Personalised T-Shirt

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Let’s face it when you’re not a dab hand at t-shirt design, or any kind of design for that matter, knowing how to design your own personalised t-shirt can seem like a daunting task. With this in mind, YourDesign has put together a comprehensive guide on how to create and design the perfect personalised t-shirt, all the way from picking your tee to perfecting your design!

1. Pick a Type of Tee

This is the first step on your journey to knowing how to design your own personalised t-shirt might be one of the most crucial. Thinking about the occasion and the audience that this t-shirt is for, can help you to select the right style, fit and look.

How To Design Your Own Personalised T-Shirt | YourDesign

It might be worth looking through and trying on tee’s you already own and seeing which style suits best or one that you prefer. It’s all about the prep when it comes to t-shirt design.

2. To Pre-Design or Not to Pre-Design?

There are real advantages to picking a tee that is already rocking its own themed pre-design. If you’re feeling nervous it’s great having a design all there primed and ready for you, however with pre-deigns you’re still able to get stuck in with some customisation of your own.

How To Design Your Own Personalised T-Shirt | YourDesign

Normally, you can change the colour of the pre-design image, the tee base colour, as well as adding your own text and images, on all plain sides of the tee, so it’s a win-win!

3. Detail is King, But Keep Things Simple

  • The rule of three: it’s a principle which affects every room of your home, but is also a useful lesson when it comes to knowing how to design your own personalised t-shirt. Odd numbers, in general, seem to look better when it comes T-shirt prints.








  • Compositional balance: this refers to the distribution of visually “weighted” components across a design,  Don’t tip the scales too far in any one direction. However, in certain situations, you can get away with an edgy imbalance.
  • Simple, but effective: a sleek design, as opposed to a bustling, busy tee, is usually more effective when it comes to reaching the right impact or conveying a certain message. A symbol or a phrase, as opposed to busy clashing images often works better.

How To Design Your Own Personalised T-Shirt | YourDesign

4. Prepare Your Design Properly

If you’re going to properly know how to design your own personalised t-shirt, then make sure you’ve spent enough time creating that design beforehand, to ensure it’s going to be effective on the tee. However, if creating your own design is beyond your skill-set or time-frame, most personalisation tee companies will have an image library from which you can select good-quality images to jazz-up your t-shirt.

5. Killer Colour and Materials

Check out the range of colours that your print company offers before you start composing your t-shirt, they might not have the particular colour you had in mind so don’t waste your time. Also:

  • Choose a colour that aligns itself with the look, occasion or tone you’re trying to create. This could be company colours or just a shade that sums you up.
  • Keep in mind complementary colour combinations.
  • Ensure that when you choose the base colour that the images and text over the top are sharp and visible (this t-shirt below is how NOT to do it).

How To Design Your Own Personalised T-Shirt | YourDesign

In terms of the material, consider what kind of design will look best and how it will look when it’s on the body. Some speciality inks include foil (shiny), high density (dimensional, textured appearance), gel (thick and rubbery), and water-based (no feel at all), know what you’re dealing with.

6. Do Your ‘Tee-Search’

There are so many cool and quirky designs out there, you can use them as a base to help you design something for yourself. This could be anything, your favourite album artwork, book cover or even a special memory. Be inspired by all t-shirt designs past, present and future!

7. Source a Good Printer

A good way to how to design your own personalised t-shirt is to consider how the weight, the sizes, the labelling options, cost, etc, all affect the end product. This takes a while and will require speaking to various companies, but one thing is for certain, make sure you deal with a company who wants to treat your tee as an end retail product and will handle your work with care. Screenprinting is an art, don’t be hasty and you won’t be disappointed!


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