Posted on Jun 16, 2011 in Clothing & accessories, Help & services
I have a funny picture I made that I want to put on a shirt for some friends. How do I do that?
It used to be, in the days of yore, that you would find a local screen printer you would have to go to, bring your artwork, wait for a proof, approve it, and wait for them to slot your shirts into their production run. Sometimes they’d impose a minimum order, meaning you’d take a bath if you ordered 25 but only sold 6. Some could only do text.
The good news is (well, bad for those shops) that those days are over. Now you can upload your design right to a website, order, and have your shirt in a couple days. No minimum, no fuss.
Here are my two favorites:
Zazzle.com: Zazzle is a fantastic online “create-your-own-product” store, with everything from t-shirts to hoodies to mousepads to iPhone covers. And when I say t-shirts, I mean more than 15 different kinds of t-shirt, from basic value to ringer tees to American Apparel. They have no minimum order, no setup fee, and you get your shirt in about a week, depending on your shipping option. You can also set your commission level, so you can earn some bucks on your stuff. (They have a minimum of 10%, so no “at cost” options for your buyers, unfortunately.) The quality and selection is unreal, however.
CafePress.com: CafePress is very similar to Zazzle. Shirt selection isn’t as varied as Zazzle, but prices generally run a bit lower too. The selection of other “stuff” — such as mugs and the like — is comparable. Again, no setup fee, no minimum order, and shipping takes about a week. You can set your commission level here as well, including to “zero” so everything is at cost, which if you’re just trying to have fun and not make a buck, can be nice. Quality is excellent here as well.
Copyright: Both sites insist you own the copyright to any image you upload for production. If you didn’t make it, take it, or sigificantly alter it enough to make it a new work of art, be warned they may take it down — especially if you start selling a lot of them. (So don’t just upload an Apple logo so you can make cheap Apple shirts. That won’t work.) Parody, however, is allowed. Each site has their own particular list of prohibited content, I suggest you check just to be sure.
File/Image size: Make sure whatever you’re uploading meets the minimum suggested guidelines for either site. Don’t make the image larger than they recommend, unless you’re going for the 8-bit Nintendo look. Again, each site has their own set of rules for this, so make sure you’re paying attention.
Kind of a neat world we live in where you can design, buy, and sell a shirt without ever leaving your house, huh?
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