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Top 8 T-shirt Design Ideas That Will Sell Like Hot Cakes

Irrespective of whether you already have a t-shirt business or are planning to build one, you can not underestimate the design part.

T-shirt designs can make or break your business. For your end-customer, t-shirts are not just another product. They are a form of expression, be it political or creative.

However, finding designs that your target market finds relatable can be a daunting task. To help you with that, here is a list of trending t-shirt design ideas that will help you get shoppers’ attention.

List of Trending T-shirt Design Ideas

  • T-shirts with Pet Designs
  • Designs that Have Strong Statements
  • Doodle T-shirts
  • T-shirts with a Typography Design
  • T-shirts with Illustrations
  • T-shirt Design Based on Profession or Institution
  • Floral Design Trend is Evergreen
  • T-shirt Designs that Appeal to Enthusiasts

1. T-shirts with Pet Designs

The pet industry is steadily growing. More people are adopting furry companions. According to statistics, it is estimated that the global pet industry in the US reached $99 billion in 2020.

In such a case, catering to this niche can be a profitable idea. In this category, further, you can narrow it down to sub-niches like designs of dogs, cats, wolves, birds, etc.

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For instance, Red Bubble, a global online marketplace for print-on-demand products, has a vast variety of dog t-shirts. On your online store, you can either offer designs with graphics or some famous quotes on pets.

You can even offer personalized t-shirts where you enable shoppers to add their pets’ names or upload custom images.

2. Designs that Have Strong Statements

As mentioned before, t-shirts are a form of expression. Without speaking much, they help people make bold and clear arguments about what they stand for.

Did you know when apparel became political? It started with the rise of silkscreen printing in the 1960s and 1970s.

This technique of printing made it easier to print custom t-shirts. Using t-shirts, people shared their opinions during the Vietnamese war.

Even today, nothing has changed. T-shirts play a huge role in activism, politics, social change, etc. To appeal to a certain set of audience, you can offer t-shirt designs that are simple yet effective with text in bold.

3. Doodle T-shirts

Who said t-shirt designs have to be formal or serious? T-shirts with doodle designs are a good way to add an element of playfulness and fun.

Doodle is a simple drawing. It can either have a representational meaning or can be a drawing or random and abstract lines.

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You can doodle using thin lines, colors, shapes, wavy lines, and so on. So, set your mind free, and come up with designs that are funky and groovy!

4. T-shirts with a Typography Design

When it comes to using text for t-shirt designs, there is so much that one can do. You can add brightness and energy to designs with multi-colored text. Offer designs with either a limited color palette or make every letter of a different color.

Another option is to sell t-shirts with handwritten typography. Experiment with different font styles and add charm with colors or other design elements. Other styles include wavy wrapped text, curved text, repeated words, flipped text, and so on.

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With the development of modern technology, the latest in vogue is 3D typography. It is a design trend that adds a realistic effect to the text.

5. T-shirts with Illustrations

Another popular trend in t-shirt design is illustrations. One of the easiest things to design is cartoon illustrations. An important characteristic of this type of illustration is geometric shapes and a lot of colors. Popular cartoon art styles include manga, anime, Disney, general caricatures, etc.

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Apart from cartoons, top trends dominating illustrations are 3D illustrations, geometric designs, line art, intricate lettering, and minimalistic illustrations.

6. T-shirt Design Based on Profession or Institution

From corporates to music bands, everyone needs t-shirts either for promotional purposes or as uniforms. Here are some popular industries that you can target.

One of the most profitable sectors is startups and corporates. You can use different things like company name, company logo, tagline, or other text and create a dynamic t-shirt design.

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You can also target education institutions, bands, musicians, the hospitality sector, the medical industry, etc.

7. Floral Design Trend is Evergreen

Floral design in fashion never goes out of style. The history of floral design goes back to ancient Egypt, where designs included simplicity and repetition of a particular floral pattern. However, floral prints gained momentum during the nineteenth century with William Morris’s popular sunflower motif.

You can consider floral prints with earthy colors and watercolor prints, botanical typography, real-life images of flowers, etc.

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Alongside flowers and nature, another theme that is trending is spirituality. This type of t-shirt design is minimalist, has light and earthy colors and tones, and has flowy lines.

8. T-shirt Designs that Appeal to Enthusiasts

Categorizing your audience into what they are passionate about helps you create and sell t-shirts that shoppers are actually looking for.

You can target customers interested in things like games, traveling, books, fitness, etc. Once you decide who your target audience is, you can finalize designs.

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For example, if you choose to target gamers, the next step is to determine whether you want to sell t-shirts with game sayings and quotes or create graphics referring to game culture.

Read more details about how to find the best t-shirt designs in the below section.

Bonus Tip: Where to Find Best Designs & How to Create Them

Another challenge that entrepreneurs come across is finding design inspiration. Merch by Amazon is a good place to find design ideas. Merch by Amazon is Amazon’s platform for print-on-demand clothing.

The platform offers a free tool, Merch Titans, that helps find top-selling products for any keyword or niche you enter. If you search for design ideas, you will get results like design image, number of items sold, brand, etc. Based on the information, you will be able to decide on the popularity.

Another way to search for t-shirt designs is to look on platforms like Facebook and Pinterest. By taking advantage of Facebook Ads, you will be able to get insights into what your competitors are doing. Pinterest will also help you understand the popularity of designs.

Etsy, a marketplace for handmade goods, is another place to find design inspiration. There, you can take note of reviews and ratings by customers to know what’s popular.

Once you decide on a niche, you need to start the process of creating designs. If you have a design idea but can not create it yourself, you can crowdsource your design idea with 99designs. You describe your idea, and designers will submit their versions of the design. You can also hire professional designers at places like Dribble or Upwork.

Concluding Remarks

These were 8 trending ideas that will help you in the journey of seeking inspiration for t-shirt designs. However, irrespective of how popular the design is, shoppers would want something unique and tailored specifically to them.

Every shopper coming to your store has different requirements, and they expect you to cater to their needs. In such a scenario, a T-shirt Design Tool helps you enable customization on your store. Using the tool, shoppers can enhance a t-shirt design by adding text or quotes, uploading custom images, changing background colors, etc.

The T-shirt Design Tool can be easily integrated with any eCommerce platform. If you have a Magento store, you can integrate a Magento Product Designer to the admin panel and get started with providing customizable t-shirts. This helps in getting traction and improving customer satisfaction.

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Pratik Shah

Mr. Pratik Shah is Creative Head of Brush Your Ideas, a Web-to-Print technology solution offering custom product design software and Web-to-Print Storefront Solutions. He is a tech enthusiast and an avid blogger and writes about ecommerce and web-to-print industry.

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