Categories : Preparing Your T-shirt Design Shirt Printing

Preparing Your T-shirt Design for Printing at TshirtsCanada

Preparing Your T-shirt Design…

Whether you have your own t-shirt design, or would like us to add to your design or if you want TshirtsCanada to create a  design for you, there are a few requirements that we need to pay attention to. First and foremost, before we begin the actual printing of your custom printed t-shirts it is crucial that all the images and fonts in your artwork are sharp and clear. After all, you want excellent looking custom printed t-shirts. Now if we create a design for you, you needn’t be concerned however…

This is why we ask for photos or graphic designs to be at least 300 dpi (dots per inch). It is also helpful when we know the name of the font or fonts that you’re using in your design.

Now we do understand that this is not always possible. In many cases we are able to manipulate your photos and artwork to sharpen and clean it up for you.


Preparing Your T-shirt Design – What is 300 dpi?

When you look closely at a photograph in a newspaper you’ll see that it is actually composed of dots. The same is true of a photo taken by a digital camera and saved as a bitmap (a jpeg, bmp or tiff is a bitmap). It is actually composed of tiny squares with different colors.


Preparing Your T-shirt Design - Example of 72 dpi vs 300 dpi

So when there is a reference to resolution, it is referring to how many dots (squares) there are per square inch, hence dpi. The more dots there are per square inch, the sharper and clearer the image and the better your artwork will print. Each dot can be a different colour.

On the Internet the normal resolution is 72 dpi. The higher the dpi, the larger the file. So a file that is 300 dpi requires more memory than a file that is 72 dpi.

When we print custom tshirts at T-shirts Canada we want to have 300 dpi at the full size of the printed image. This gives your design more detail and the results are clear graphics.

If you send us a photograph with a resolution of 150 dpi, we’ll put it in a program and increase it to 300 dpi.

But if your image resolution is too low we will be unable to adjust your image and therefore that image would be unusable in your design.

One other point to mention is when an image transitions from one colour to another it is referred to as anti-aliasing. So for example to go from black to white, the outer edge of the image would be black, then dark grey, then mid grey, then light grey, then white. In photos this creates a smoother image. However for graphic design it is better to go directly from black to white. This is created using a vector format.


Converting Your T-shirt Design to Vector (We Will Do This For You)

There is another type of file used for saving artwork. This type is vector. What this means is rather than using dots the image is calculated based on formulas using lines and curves.

This process results in very smooth looking artwork and fonts however it doesn’t work for photographs.

Professional programs such as CorelDraw or Adobe Illustrator are vector-based programs and have the ability to produce an excellent results.

We use CorelDraw. CorelDraw has an application that will convert bitmaps to vector. This program does an admirable conversion most of the time.

When we are able to convert your artwork to vector, we do. You won’t see the difference at all because we don’t send you a comparison, but it ensures that you artwork on your custom printed t-shirts prints great.


Include the Names of Your Your Fonts with Your Design

When you send us your artwork, please include the names of any fonts you used. Many times what we do is recreate your artwork converting it to vector when possible.

If you are doing your design in Word, please read this post on how to embed your fonts in the Word document. Embed your fonts in Word.

This way the image you see on your computer will look the same on ours.


Preparing Your T-shirt Design – Cropping Your Photograph

When working with photographs it is usually best if you send us the original photograph with instructions for cropping. For example you might send the full photograph and say that for the design you want just the person’s head in the photo with most of the background removed.

This usually gives us a higher resolution and subsequently a better looking print.


Adding Text to Your Photograph or Artwork for Your T-shirts

It is actually a very simple procedure for us to add text to your photograph or artwork. If it is a photograph and you would like to also include some printing on the photograph we can easily do that. If you have a particular font in mind for your design let us know.

You also may have some artwork such as a business logo or graphic and you might like us to add your website address and phone number. Again this is very easy for us to do.


We Can Work With Your Design Suggestions

So in conclusion I would like to say if your design is already done, we can print it.

If you have part of your artwork ready such as a photo or a partial design and you would like us to add to it (phone number, website or any additional text) we can do that for you.

Or if you would like us to create a complete design for you just send us your suggestions and will put it together for you.

Before printing anything we send a mock-up to give you an idea how the shirts would look. If it needs to be tweaked we’ll do that and send a new mock-up.

To get some ideas as to pricing please check out these links:

Actually, here are some links to get additional info and pricing:

Our intention at TshirtsCanada is to make it as easy as possible for you to arrange for your custom printed t-shirts and to give you a great looking t-shirt design!