A t-shirt is the perfect medium for a variety of reasons. It’s innocuous enough not to draw attention away from the design, cheap, and naturally portable. Some t-shirts you just buy as they are, and others you can design for yourself. There are many reasons to design your own t-shirt, and many different types of t-shirts to design. Though many of us own a whole pile of t-shirts we don’t really consider what they’re actually for and why we wear them. Here is my breakdown of the types of shirts we get and why we have them.
Custom Funny Shirts
Funny shirts are a no-brainer. The reason you design them is either to make people laugh at your awesome joke, or to appeal to a large audience so that they’ll buy the shirt from you. Either way, while making a great funny shirt might not catapult you to instant fame and fortune, it’s definitely worth it to make one if you’ve got an excellent sense of humor. Never be afraid to share your greatness with the masses. If you’re on the buying end of the process, you might be sharing an inside humorous reference with a select audience or telling a full on joke on your shirt. Either way mine don't generally last too long, because they're always the first ones I go for after laundry day.
One of the biggest favorites in the t-shirt industry is the political shirt. Whether it’s a hopeful and inspiring message of your favorite politician or a nasty derogatory joke about the guy you love to hate, a great political shirt is a strong statement. If you’re going to a political rally or just want to rile people up in public, a political shirt is for you. I kind of avoid these since I don’t really like getting attacked by random strangers, but that’s probably just me.
Just got back from the Caribbean? Rome? New York? Wear a shirt to show all the working stiffs back at home what they missed out on. Nothing is quite as satisfying as reveling in the envious stares of your cubicle mates when you stroll in on casual Friday with your Istanbul shirt as they sit and imagine that you still smell ever so slightly of falafel and Turkish coffee.
Custom Event Shirts
People make event shirts for every possible occasion from birthday parties to wedding receptions to even funerals (seen it!). My closet is full of shirts from camps, old high school dances, and various random functions that I’ve been either too lazy or nostalgic to throw away. Event shirts are the types of things you wear once for a reason and then again when it’s laundry day.
Custom Business Shirts
Business shirts can be awesome or terrible. Often times a business shirt will overlap in function with an event shirt. One example is the class “team building” shirt where everyone wants you to be dressed the same in order to help you identify with your coworkers. More casual businesses often use t-shirts or embroidered polo shirts as a uniform to help give their business a unified look.
Alice Jenkins is a graphic designer and blogger. She enjoys blogging about her work and enjoys providing insight into the design world for the uninitiated. She currently writes for youdesignit.com, where you can make Custom Design T Shirts Online.