Ideas and Tips for Awesome T-Shirt Designs

Technology and the range of online services we have access to have revolutionised the concept of creating your own clothes. It’s now possible to easily order cheap, customised screen printed t-shirts, hoodies, jackets and many other clothing items, as well as accessories.

Screen printing is the method of choice for creating the kind of designs that are intended for things like t-shirts, as the results tend to be particularly vivid and impressive when compared with other printing methods. It is worth considering several factors before you go ahead and get your design printed, however. We might recommend following these steps to make sure you’re ready to proceed.

1) Spend time on the artistic process – Once you get your design printed, there’s no going back if you suddenly have a better idea. Try out different possibilities with your design idea and work on it until it’s perfect. Sometimes it will take some exploration and imagination to get to the result you want.

2) Picture your finished product – Decide exactly what item of clothing you’re going to use, and visualise the design on it. You should create a mock up of the finished t-shirt so you can get a sense of proportion and how it might suit the wearer. This could inspire you to make changes.

E-commerce web design trends this year

e commerce

E-commerce is a continuously growing market with a booming 2 trillion in sales today. The sales are expected to double in the next two years. The E-commerce provides an opportunity for anyone to open their store online. An E-commerce website is something that any business owner should set up regardless of what product or services they offer as almost everyone on the planet is shopping online through their mobile and laptop devices. If you already have an e-commerce website or looking to set up your own, it’s important to keep up to date with the latest trends to further improve your websites design and customer service.

Video content

Online shops are now incorporating a product video to their product page. The videos allow the customers to see the actual product in use. ASOS is one of the top online fashion stores that have recently uploaded clips of their models walking while wearing their products.

Speed

The loading speed of your website is critical as customers are more likely to leave if your website load is too low. There’s been a proven fact that customers will never go back to a website if they are having trouble with the website loading. A slow website can also give an impression that your website is not safe or trustworthy. Before launching your site, make sure that you check your speed by visiting Google’s speed tool and see what options you have to take to improve your loading speed.

Fixed navigation panel

A fixed navigation panel is something that you should incorporate if you haven’t already. A fixed panel will allow the customer to navigate anywhere on your website while still being able to click on any navigation menus. Essential menus such as the shopping cart or your social media profile will remain visible anywhere they go in your website.

Security

Security is another important factor to consider for your E-commerce. Some research will be required if you want to secure your website further. For larger shops, a VPN would be suitable as it provides complete security and privacy protection.

The basics of graphic design

graphic design

To understand graphic design, you must get to know the basics first. Once you know the basics, you’re more likely to understand the other elements that go with the concept. To help you get started with the basics, we’ve provided some useful information below.

Consistency

Graphic design is all about consistency from start to finish. For example, any elements used have to be consistent, this could include the size of the text, the font, colour, images and overall quality. The visuals have to all have the same

Grammar

When using text contents, ensure that your grammar is intact. Having good grammar is very important when it comes to presenting a professional design. If you’re not particularly good with grammar, there’s an app called Grammarly that automatically corrects your grammar without having to manually check the work yourself.

Whitespace

Leave plenty of white space around the design. Even though the design is simple, it will create a more professional look. Avoid creating a busy design as it will look too cluttered or messy. When the design is clean and straightforward, users can also navigate easier. Customers tend to move on to a different site as soon as they find it difficult to navigate or find what they are looking for.

Quality

Remember quality over quantity. The design will have a more professional look when high-quality elements are used. Avoid using any poor quality contents for images or text information as this could destroy your brand image.

Highlight

When creating text information for blog posts or articles, the heading or the main message must always be bold and highlighted to direct the viewer’s attention to what’s important. The text can be highlighted simply by changing the size of the font or even the colour. Any important message could be added on the heading or highlighted in the text.

Websites similar to Squarespace

Websites similar to squarespace

Squarespace Alternatives: Top 7 Free Website Builders that allow to create your own website for free in 2017

Websites similar to squarespace

Squarespace is a popular website builder mainly for its design-friendly features, particularly its elegant templates and versatile styling editor. Great as it may be, this site builder is not for everyone. Squarespace has only one sub-navigation level, so you cannot use it for bigger-scale sites. Several features are lacking, such as a preview mode, the ability to customize the mobile version, and support for multilingual websites. If you are wondering if there are Squarespace alternatives that suit your needs, you will be glad to know that it is not the only choice nowadays when it comes to building websites.

Here are the top 10 websites similar to Squarespace but offers better website building capabilities, including their pros and cons. The best thing about the website builders on this list is that they are all free—they allow users to create stunning sites without any cost.

1.FabSite.com

Fabsite.com Free Website Builder

Sharing a lot of similar features with Wix, FabSite is also a good Squarespace alternative because it offers something that the former does not: the ability to make a zip file of the whole website (which is useful when you switch to a new web host) and the Page Layouts feature for pre-editing each page of your site. If you are wondering what is the best and fastest way to get free website design FabSite might be worth your attention.

Pros:

  • Cutting edge technology
  • Drag-and-drop tool for adding images, text, videos and forms
  • Modern and elegant themes that can be customized with just a click
  • Wide range of customization options
  • Easy and fast development process (5 min to get fully working website)
  • Fully responsive
  • Free: 100MB storage and 1GB bandwidth

Cons:

  • No free email account, only in paid version

 

2. WordPress

Wordpress- Free blogging platform

One of the best open-source platforms out there, WordPress is known worldwide as a reliable content management system. Compared to Squarespace, WordPress is more beginner-friendly because it offers more design choices and flexibility.

 

Pros:

  • Free plugins, templates, and themes for building awesome websites for professional portfolios and e-commerce
  • Easy to use, so much so that you can create a website in only a few hours
  • Unlimited bandwidth and 3GB storage space
  • Provides website traffic information, which is useful for modifying your website to suit your audience’s needs
  • Supportive online community of users and developers as well as tutorials and other online resources

Cons:

  • Requires basic knowledge of website building and coding for customizing website design

3. Wix

Wix - website builder

With more than 60 million websites built, Wix is one of the widely known and most user-friendly website-building tools today. No wonder that it is considered among the strongest competitors of Squarespace. For e-commerce sites, Wix supports more than one payment option (Adsense and PayPal), while Squarespace has only one. Another edge of Wix over Squarespace is that the former does not deduct a transaction fee from every sale.

Pros:

  • Easy to use, even for beginners with little coding knowledge
  • Drag-and-drop website builder tool that makes website creation as quick as that of a Powerpoint presentation
  • Wide range of customization options and third-party services
  • Enables users to customize the mobile version of their website
  • Provides the option to revert to the earlier versions of your site
  • Hundreds of HTML templates

Cons:

  • Has e-commerce functionality but may not be the best choice for e-commerce sites compared to WordPress and Shopify
  • Only 500MB bandwidth and 500MB of storage space
  • Does not allow changing of templates once a project has been started

4. Jimdo

Jimdo - open source web builder

This open-source software, which has been used to create more than 20 million websites to date, is a good Squarespace alternative because it is more cost-effective, simpler to use, and supported across the world. It is ideal for small business start-ups that need to build a powerful e-commerce site.

Pros:

  • WYSIWYG editor that shows a preview of your website before you publish it
  • Unlimited cloud-based storage and bandwidth
  • Supports over nine languages
  • Ability to customize the HTML/CSS source file
  • Ability to integrate HD video and the option to tweak the video resolution to make it load faster during slow connections
  • Free SEO enhancements, domain registration, and web hosting

Cons:

  • Supports only PayPal and manual payments; no credit card gateway
  • Templates have certain restrictions that limit customization

5. Tumblr

Tumblr - social media / web builder platform

Unlike the other website builders on this list, Tumblr is the only one that is completely free—meaning it does not offer premium services for a fee. It is hardly surprising because this online tool is uncomplicated. It is suitable for users who just want to create an online portfolio of their work, a microsite with a few static pages, or a simple blog. If you are looking to build an e-commerce website or a forum, then you are better off using something else.

Pros:

  • Customizable themes, including the default ones
  • Easier to use than other blogging platforms like Blogger
  • Good enough for building and updating a simple website

Cons:

  • Limited Analytics tools for tracking website traffic and other important SEO information
  • Just a few selection of integrated site building tools

6. Webflow

Web FLow - website builder / drag and drop

This full-featured free website builder was launched in 2012 to cater to designers who did not know how to code but wanted to build custom websites. Compared to Squarespace, Webflow offers more templates, as well as the option to create your own template from scratch. Webflow is great for designers who want to make stunning websites for their clients.

Pros:

  • Attractive interface that looks and feels like Photoshop
  • Ability to add social media components, videos, and maps even without coding knowledge
  • Great customer support

Cons:

  • Limited theme choices
  • Knowledge of HTML and CSS is required

7. IM Creator

 IM Creator - website creator

IM Creator is a free, professional website builder that is perfect for first-timers who want to create interactive websites with a solid online presence. To date, it has helped build more than 11 million websites.

Pros:

  • Easy to use point-and-click interface
  • Supports single page and multiple page layouts
  • Economical option for beginners
  • Supports more languages (14) than Squarespace (3)
  • Unlimited domain and web hosting services
  • Unlimited storage space and bandwidth

Cons:

  • Limited website building tools
  • Lack of CDN (content delivery network) technology

Free Softwares for Graphic Designers

smallbusiness.com

Adobe software is probably what comes to mind when it comes to designing. However, what if you cannot afford the premium soft wares that are on the market? Well luckily, there are numerous of other free programmes you can start using for designing. These free Softwares will have all the necessary tools you need, and they are a great alternative to Photoshop. You will find that some software can be used straight from any browser or some may need to be downloaded on your PC. Keep in mind that there are now hundreds of apps that you can also consider. Let’s take a look at the following blogs with free software that you can use for graphic design.

5 Free Alternatives to Expensive Professional Software

If you can’t justify the return on investment for an Adobe Creative Cloud subscription or even Photoshop, the GNU Image Manipulation Program (GIMP for short) can probably fill in the gap for non-professional digital design. It’s feature-rich with a little effort, will work like Photoshop when you need it to. Take note: It can look a little daunting. If you’d like more alternatives, Windows users can try Paint.net (free), and Mac users can check out the highly-acclaimed Pixelmator.

Adobe Illustrator is a must-have if you work with vector graphics, build logos, or even format documents for print or other publication, but if you’re not down to shell out for Creative Cloud subscriptions, Inkscape has been a long-time favorite for, well, just about everything you can do in Illustrator without the bells and whistles that most people don’t actually bother using. Plus it’s free, open-source, and cross-platform. read more at smallbusiness.com

31+ Best Free Graphic Design Software to Create Stunning Graphics

No matter whether you want to get started in graphic design or want to take your designing skill to advanced level – you’ll surely enjoy it. I have categorized the big list of graphic programs in various sections like vector art, image editor[pixel art], 3D and animations, infographics and other graphic design programs.

If you want to reproduce your drawing or vector art programmatically then, Scalable Vector Graphics [also known as SVG] is the format to do it. And the name of scalable vector graphics design software is SVG-Edit.

The starter edition of DrawPlus is amazingly 100% free graphic design software from Serif. It is a 2D vector graphics editor that lets you draw, design, edit and creates a perfect professional looking design. read more at techreviewpro.com

Image from smallbusiness.com

Essential tools for graphic designers

 

designrfix.com

Whether you’re a student studying graphic design or someone who aspires to be a graphic designer, you will need to get yourself with the necessary tools to get started. As a beginner, you don’t have to have the best tools, as long as you have the basics then you will be set. As you get better at designing you can always enhance your tools in the future. As for now, remember that these tools do help with designing, but it is not as important as your creative mind or the skills you will learn along the way. To start off, we’ve curated the following articles with essential tools to get you started on your journey as a graphic designer. If you have any other suggestions feel free to comment down below.

What Are the Three Most Basic Tools of the Graphic Designer?

While pencil and paper can be a great way to jot down ideas and rough sketches, in today’s technological world, most graphic designers use advanced hardware. Graphic designers spend a majority of their time on computers, and the types of computers that designers use varies. Typically, though, graphic designers choose a Mac computer, because they best support many of the software programs graphic designers use. Whether the graphic designer chooses Mac or PC, it is important that the computer have a fast processing speed, large amount of hard drive storage and large monitor. Other basic hardware tools include laser printers, scanners and digital cameras.

Another basic tool graphic designers use is software. Software programs range from design-based like Adobe Illustrator and Freehand to layout programs such as Quark Xpress and Adobe InDesign. Other software programs graphic designers rely on include photo-editing software such as Adobe Photoshop. Because many graphic designers do Internet-based design, software programs such as Adobe Flash help designers easily take graphic design to the Web using basic HTML language. read more at work.chron.com

10 Must-Have Tools for Graphic Designers to Ramp Up Your Creativity

No matter if you are just getting into graphic design, or thinking to polish your skill set and creative thinking, you can use many design elements to build upon these fundamentals that will take you from a good designer to a great one.

I’ve curated the list of best apps, tools, resources and websites that will help web designers to streamline their work, make collaboration simpler, get inspired for your next design project, polish your skills and ramp up your creativity.

Web designers can submit their creative work to Awwwards to evaluate website designs. If your design meets their standards, it will be nominated. Your design will go through a voting process and based on the results of the community and the jury, a designer wins an award “Site of the Day”.

Believe it or not, Photoshop is the cornerstone for nearly every graphic designer. Adobe Creative Cloud gives users an entire collection of creative tools for your desktop, such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and Adobe Premiere Pro. Designers can take full advantage of different mobile apps that will make sure you are able to do your creative work from anywhere, at any time. read more at medium.com

Image from designrfix.com

Is Your Website Design Letting Your Brand Down?

Responsive web design

We spend a lot of time talking about printing and graphic design, as well as actually doing it, of course! It’s important to remember, though, that if you’re running a business it’s not all about your products themselves, even when you’re just thinking about design. For example, how much thought are you putting into your online presence? Could a professional responsive web design company be what you need to really take your brand to the next level?

Website design is something that gets forgotten all too often by people who don’t really specialise in online marketing, and even those who do sometimes. If you create printed clothing or other graphic products to sell online, you’ll probably be dealing with your website on a regular basis and have a good understanding of it. However, this can often lead to even professional designers becoming somewhat blinded to what their site really looks like, especially to an outsider.

It’s hard to approach your existing website with a fresh pair of eyes, but it’s not uncommon to get a little lost, and there are ways you can start to improve. For a start, you may be able to identify mistakes you’re making based on many of the common ones we still see all the time. These include the following…

Mobile web design

  • Not being mobile friendly – If your website still doesn’t look right on mobile devices, you’re already many years behind most of your competition, regardless of industry. The best solution is a responsive site which adapts automatically to any screen.
  • Hidden navigation menus – It’s common for navigation bars to be hidden under “hamburger menus”, which are usually great for mobile users, but it’s not always obvious where to find the hidden options, especially on desktops.
  • Carousel banners – Do you have sliding banners at the top of your homepage? Unfortunately, so does everyone else. This trend as spread like wildfire, but not always been executed well. It can cause people to become blind to your banners since they’re so used to having to scroll down to get to the content.
  • Badly planned typography Using too many fonts that don’t work well together, or simply choosing unattractive fonts that are difficult to read, can really sabotage the potential of a great website. Be very careful about what you choose.

You may find this entire process much easier, and dodge a lot more common pitfalls the first time, if you simply enlist the services of an experienced web design company to help you achieve better results for your brand. People expect anyone in the field of graphic design to have a great online presence, so address any problems that are holding you back and get started with your revamp.

10 Printing Terms Designers Need To Know

Like any other profession, graphic design is full of jargon. To be successful you need to familiarise yourself with some of these terms. It doesn’t matter whether you are a student, beginner or you are doing a refresher course. The following terms are going to come in handy at one time or another.

Raster images

Raster images which are also known as bitmap images consist of thousands of pixels that establish the form and colour of the image. Photos are good examples of raster images. The most common raster editor is known Photoshop. It allows you to work with colour and other properties of the pixels.

Vector images

Unlike raster images, vectors do not lose quality even when resized. Vector based images have coordinates which are defined as the x and y coordinates. Normally, the points join to form shapes where you can add colour fills. Vectors are used to create logos. The use of vector images is advancing really fast.

Colorimeter

What is a colorimeter? It is a device whose work is to measure the hue and intensity of light released from a computer’s monitor. The device placed flat on the screen since it possesses a light reading cell in its underside. It analyses the information and then builds a profile that acts as a calibrator to the monitor. There are printers which come with inbuilt colour calibration.

Digital Printing vs. Screen Printing

Throughout decades, many printing methods have been established around the globe. However, only two techniques have stood the test of time – Digital printing and screen printing. What are their differences, you ask?

In screen printing (the older of the two), a stencil is created and used to apply ink layers on the surface to be printed. The stencil – also referred to as a screen during printing – applies different color layers on the surface, each at a time. This assortment of color layers combines to achieve the final print look.

digital

Digital printing, on the other hand, is a more advanced printing process. A computer is used to process your selected artwork, after which special printers are used to print the processed image onto the surface of your fabric. Heat transfer is not used here. Instead, the ink is efficiently adhered onto the selected attire.

Pros and cons

Both printing processes have their fair share of benefits and shortcomings. Screen printing, for instance, best suits designs that need a high degree of vibrancy. This could apply to cases where you require printing dark shirts, or for a highly unique product. More ink is used in screen printing, leading to thicker prints and bright, crisp colors even on the darkest attire. Screen printers can easily print unique products such as curved water bottles and cups. On the down side, screen printing is both time and labor intensive.

Digital printing is perfect for prints requiring a high degree of detail. It is mainly used for small-scale printing orders. Since digital printers don’t rely on screens, it’s possible to produce an outstanding photographic print. Compared to the traditional screen printing, digital printing results in more detailed prints. However, this printing method achieves lighter colored garments since thinner ink is applied. This allows the intricate design to shine easily. The only downer is the fact that few garments can be printed digitally.

Which printing method should you use?

screen

Before making a choice between Digital Printing vs. Screen Printing, it’s crucial to factor in some issues. For instance, what is the nature of your printing surface? Would you prefer a radiating shirt with bright, beaming colors or would you prefer a simple, laid-back print that has sharp contrast and lighter colors?

If you desire a design look that’s subtle and feels light, almost like there’s nothing printed, then digital printing could serve this role perfectly. On the other hand, screen printing will help you achieve a deep, eye-catching print that perfectly puts your design out there. It especially blends well with black t-shirts and other dark attire.

The type of garment material also matters when choosing between Digital Printing vs. Screen Printing. When it comes to printing, cotton is always preferred since it readily absorbs ink. Screen printing can be applied on a diverse range of fabric including nylon, polyester, bamboo and burlap. Digital printing is limited to only cotton and polyester garments.

How to Create Graphics for Clothes

yellowishMany people have printed graphics clothes that have cracked and split, making the cloth look terrible. Some people have had their clothing specially made or bought it from a concert or other occasion to remember it. These items of clothing can be expensive and will not last very long if you do not know how to properly care for them. Getting the most out of your graphic tee is not an issue if you follow a few rules when cleaning and wearing it.

The first thing to do is to buy detergent that will not harm your clothing. Look for detergent that has been made to be gentle on colors or generally delicate on clothing. Some laundry detergents are very harsh and will fade and destroy custom clothing very quickly. The detergent may be more expensive than what you are used to, but if you only use it on certain clothing then it will last for a longer period of time.

Set your washer on a delicate setting for your clothes.

Your washer should have a gentle or delicate cycle that can help you to preserve the graphic on your clothes for a long period of time. Some people have a hand wash setting on their washer that they use for printed graphic clothing. If you take your clothes to a Laundromat, you should not have any trouble finding a washer with a gentle or delicate cycle.

b-wMake sure you are color separating the clothes before washing. You do not want your cloth to look dingy or have other colors bleed into it. You don’t want the colors from it to bleed onto your other clothes, either. Separate the darks from the lights and wash them accordingly. All of your clothes will benefit from the color separation before washing.

It can be tempting to throw everything together when you don’t have a lot of time, but if you plan ahead and have two hampers, you can make the separation a lot easier. As soon as you take your clothes off, separate them between the two hampers according to light and dark colors. If you don’t have hampers and throw all of your clothes down a laundry chute, you may want to at least get a laundry basket and keep light or dark clothes aside.

tshirtWash your clothes in cold water and make sure the clothes are inside-out. Cold water prevents peeling and shrinking of the clothes and graphic, and it will save you a little money on your energy bill. Make sure your graphic cloth is inside-out to further protect the graphic from cracking and other damage. Again, as soon as you take the shirt off, turn it inside-out to save time later.

Hang your shirt to dry. The heat from the dryer can severely damage your graphic cloth. The signs of damage may not be visible at first, but eventually you will see what the heat has done to destroy your clothes. You can hang your shirt on a wooden hanger anywhere that you have the space to hang it; you do not need a clothesline to do this.