How To Create A T-Shirt and Get It Ready to Sell | Lindsay Marsh | Skillshare

Playback Speed

  • 0.5x
  • 1x (Normal)
  • 1.25x
  • 1.5x
  • 2x

How To Create A T-Shirt and Get It Ready to Sell

teacher avatar Lindsay Marsh, Over 300,000 Design Students & Counting!

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      T-Shirt The Basic File Setup


    • 2.

      Create the T-Shirt Design


    • 3.

      Get your T-Shirt ready to sell!


  • --
  • Beginner level
  • Intermediate level
  • Advanced level
  • All levels

Community Generated

The level is determined by a majority opinion of students who have reviewed this class. The teacher's recommendation is shown until at least 5 student responses are collected.





About This Class

This class is for someone who wants to design and sell T-Shirts or other appeal online and wants to know how to use Adobe Illustrator® to set up files, export them and get them ready to make money! This class assumes you know a little bit about Illustrator, but only the basics. I go fast, so feel free to pause, rewatch. 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Lindsay Marsh

Over 300,000 Design Students & Counting!


I have had many self-made titles over the years: Brand Manager, Digital Architect, Interactive Designer, Graphic Designer, Web Developer and Social Media Expert, to name a few. My name is Lindsay Marsh and I have been creating brand experiences for my clients for over 12+ years. I have worked on a wide variety of projects both digital and print. During those 12 years, I have been a full-time freelancer who made many mistakes along the way, but also realized that there is nothing in the world like being your own boss. 

I have had the wonderful opportunity to be able to take classes at some of the top design schools in the world, Parsons at The New School, The Pratt Institute and NYU. I am currently transitioning to coaching and teaching.


See full profile

Class Ratings

Expectations Met?
  • 0%
  • Yes
  • 0%
  • Somewhat
  • 0%
  • Not really
  • 0%

Why Join Skillshare?

Take award-winning Skillshare Original Classes

Each class has short lessons, hands-on projects

Your membership supports Skillshare teachers

Learn From Anywhere

Take classes on the go with the Skillshare app. Stream or download to watch on the plane, the subway, or wherever you learn best.


1. T-Shirt The Basic File Setup: a T shirt today. So let's go ahead and open up, um, your browser and let's go ahead and try to find the perfect T shirt to be our background design. Um, so I usually like to find someone with a person. So I went ahead and located this one right here, and I already have that in a file Ready to go an illustrator file. So all I did was open up. Just a standard illustrator file. Let's see what sizes is. Could a document set up at it art word and receives 500 by 500 pixels? That's fine. You couldn't. This is vector format, so you can always scale it up or down, depending on how well the size that you need. It s so let's go ahead. And it started. Here's our art board. Let's go ahead and drag this guy to the edge of our art board. I'm gonna hold down, shift and drag, so there's no distortion. And usually what I like to do is, um, strike that a element of her. Um let's go ahead and highlight this element. I'm gonna cut it out. Some studio edit cut. I'm gonna go over here to my layer panel and I'm gonna add a new layer by pressing create new layer button and I'm gonna paste it in place when you paste it all this paste in Iran and direction When you paste it in place it will paste it the same location that you cut it from And so what I like to do is in this new layer I locket song a oppresses empty box in between the eyeball and layer and you're gonna be a locket. So it's great about this. Is this convey our design layer? So what we'll do is we'll add a new Blair on top of this one. I don't think we need this bottom one anymore. So we have this new layer is gonna be were designed. It's gonna be used to go ahead and label that. And since this is now locked, I can move around without the shifting knowledge. I did not have it on a separate layer and it wasn't locked. Tried to design on here system mess when he tried to drag element so kind of like to keep that bottom layer locked. And here's where we could have fun and design without having to worry about shifting the background photo. So let's see, What kind of T shirt do we want to create? I didn't plan. This is kind of on the fly, so I'm just gonna kind of do something. Whatever comes to my brain So you topography based T shirts are really in, so let's do some photography based. So let's just do a very generic phrase because I can't think of one right now. But just for the sake of example, um, the good life because it is already copyrighted. Let's do something different. Check it. Wishes was live, so you guys could give you suggestions about that is not how its done. Okay, I know that's very generic. It's like that whites who could see what's going on. But just for the sake of instruction. So what I did, I just used my tie partner tool, and I typed out the basic plot. I actually amusing Railway, which is a really nice fought by the way you get it free, usually on Web. There's a website called teflon dot com, a n t dot com. You could find a lot of awesome three thoughts on there just check the copyrighting before you use them and commercial stuff. But I just didn't check that website out. It's really great for box for this type of work. Okay, so now that I picked Bon I liked it's kind of your basic bond kind of help that a covetable boulder. Um, I have my element here. Let's see, what can I do here? Let's make that on two lines, okay? And I'm gonna go up to your front and center that this is what's great about going head and placing it on a background layer with a guy on T shooters. You can really get an idea of text size. I mean, this would just be astronomically large, and this would just be too small. So it's really kind of great. Size it. You wouldn't really want to make a statement here. Um, sometimes even having its smaller people kind of look and want to pay attention to your short more can't quite read it at first, but it depends on what you're trying to go for. So I mean, we pretty much designed a T shirt. How quick was that? Of course. We want do some other things and do other designs, but let's go ahead and say this is our T shirt. Okay. Oh, so let's go ahead. Spell check. That is not how it's done. OK? I like it. Let's make that bright green just for the sake of showing you had to do this. Okay? I like that green. That's nice on the black, So OK, now, how do I get this to a printer? One online printer, like a vista print or cafe press? How do I get in a format that they're gonna like? Well, they're gonna love it in vector format or PdF, which is also technically vector. So here's how you do it. So let's say this is our final five. Beautiful ahead. Unlock this Bob design. We actually let me back up When you go and take a squeak screenshot I'm on a Mac. So how I do this is command shift four and I can actually click and drag it, and this is great to send along. If you're working with a local printer or printers up, that's gonna be screen printing it kind of war of a traditional style of printing. Then let's say the new digital printing so they have screen printing there. You have different inks and they're going to take a different Think it actually use a screen that's cut out with your design and actually stamp it on your T shirt. That is a little more expensive, but it's a much better quality way to do a T shirt design so that the usual local printer will do that. So this is how you would prepare a file file for them? You would go ahead, send them that screenshot so they know the exact placement of your text. They're gonna No, to place it in the center, Not too large, Too big. And this is gonna do next. You gonna go ahead and remove this layer? It's locked, player. They don't need that. They just need to see the J peg that cinema, for example. But for the actual file, we're gonna go ahead and leave it just like that. They can't see the white, but they will when they open up the file. Don't understand. That's why I think, and sometimes they like you to use manure. Pantone color a specific green in the catalog. But sometimes I just use this and they can usually find a good match for me. So now that we have a file, you just go to you want to make sure it's thought we need to select all. And then we need to create outlines. And so what that's gonna do, it's gonna create little outlines on the text and making vector. It's no longer able to be edited. That's fine, because your rights in this printer that I have another version that's already saved has live text. So this is a very important step is to make sure you select all and then create outlines of everything on your document. Definitely text. So this is good because they don't have to have this font installed on their computer to be able to open your file because it's outlined. There's no longer live text. So now that we have that, we're gonna go to file and save as and we're gonna save as an MP s and Adobe Illustrator file, they can open that too. That's fine. E. P s is a little bit more. They can open it and things out of the illustrator, and it's still in vector format. He were vector. Okay, so we're gonna save, and I usually say this is the newest version. Sometimes I save in the lower version. Sometimes local printers. They don't have the most up to date software. So CS five is good and that's three years old or so. That's fine. Save it. That's free. I also saved PdF. That's really good. If you want to do Cafe press or something. Sometimes I like PBS, so I'll export as a PdF. And for your settings, I usually do already have three settings for a lot of my different files. So sometimes just the good old illustrator default will do. I usually like to keep preserved editing capabilities since the case Minion shift are open the file. Do anything I usually like to have that checked. Really. Illustrator default this perfect. So that's easy. That's great, say PBS, and there's your file where she can't see the white, but they could see that when they overlay the bottom on the black shirt. So that is just the basic steps have had a create T shirt. Next couple of lessons will go over details on, you know, to do more than just text state time 2. Create the T-Shirt Design: that we know the basics. We're argued a design, a full T shirt design and uploaded and start selling. So let's go ahead and open up. Illustrator. I think I'm going to do a women's T shirt this time around. So when ahead went to Google found a T shirt, I did what we did in the first video created. That first layer locked it. So now I can create a design. Um, so there's kind of, ah, I'm gonna create a T shirt for graphic designers And there's kind of a thing. There's a color profile that we go over. It's called C M y Que, and it's kind of a running joke in graphic design circles. It's kind of the color print mode that we used was called Scion Magenta, yellow and black. And it's actually when you get a document color mood, you'll see that seemed like a color. So I'm just making a funny graphic design shirt. Not really funny, but kind of just making those letters as our T shirt so that graphic designers could wear and say, Look at me. So let's go ahead and I found the sponte. It's called Japan, and it's pretty awesome. So when had typed it up? You just type and see this lower Casey. And like, it's a nice script, bond. Kind of as a nice flow to it. So I'm gonna hold down shipped and make it about the size that I want to have it on the shirt and let's do some different colors. Let's actually make each letter the color that it represents. O. C. Represents science. Go ahead, reduce these colors. Uh, M is magenta. Let's make this magenta right now if you click on this drop down menu, I actually am in the sea. And, like, environment, cause everything you do for print, including T shirts, should be the in that environment. And actually, if you look up top at your window, you'll see RGB. Let's go ahead and get a file document noted. Make sure we're in that color mode. So here we go was due him for that. Where do you solve this? 20 And now we're gonna do yellow y for yellow and K will remain just black. I don't know why they use K for black, but I guess that's, you know, just kind of what they do So here's our little T shirt design we have. Um, it's not super duper exciting, so it's kind of create a little bit of three D effects to Mitt. So let's go ahead and zoom into our document and let's do something some shadowing Classless. Go ahead and do the pin tool. And I have, um, illustrator basic class that you can take that goes over the pin tool. If you're still a little rusty on it, saying we're what we're gonna do is we're gonna basically draw a shadow and one of his human a little more. I'm just clicking and creating shadow effect, and I'm gonna go over here, click on this and go to stroke. And that's a really thick stroke. So let me go over to my stroke panel. We can't find any of these things. I'm represent referencing. It's good a window and you'll be able to find it. So go to stroke. Let's reduce that. It's kind of CR outline. Clicking on the pin Tool created the shape. We'll switch this and make it bill, and it's not quite perfect. So the T shirt designs. Everything's magnified because the T shirt design is usually pretty big, so you got to make sure everything is precise. Oh, pretty much perfect. I'm doing just that home. That's kind of like a shadow effect for the sea. What I'm gonna do is and I dropped to over the sea. I'm gonna go over here to my color handle and I'm gonna go down. This is black. So more I increasing the more black goes with color. So to do a shadow of just do a little bit of black until I feel like it's going to create a shadow effect. So we zoom out, actually, was a little bit of overlap here. Make sure that streamline up. Okay, So see how created kind of a cool shadow of that. It's nice. Let's keep going. It's dio speed this magenta, do this quickly. You could actually you have the right idea in mind. You can pretty much create a T shirt and get it to market in less than a day. What? You kind of know what you're doing or what your concept is? Did I drop tool? Oops. One color etc. Amount. She would click on them magenta here, Que, which is black and do sat a little bit. Okay, let's do yellow, then tool. So valuable, then creating designs, especially in vector, Pretty much the tool use. So probably gonna make a pinto glass shortly kisses so so much you can learn about it. I dropped tool over black. And actually, let's add a little shadow here is this kind of flat. So if we go down here and make this line near, we could actually create a shadow of a bet, making it even more so. There we go. And I want to make sure this is precise and click on the shape. Make sure that's precise. Okay, it's kind of a quip. Which side? Go back. It's been a little bit more time if I wasn't doing a video. But there you go. Actually, let me make this little fitness shadow kind of match the others. It was kind of zoom out, check your design. You like it? I may not end up putting it on a gray shirt. It may need to solid teller to make it look good, but I could have that choice when I upload it. And I've already I got this file set up light of you see this is the file that I'm using here. Um, let's go ahead and believe that. Let's just use this one as an example set until you had exported. So what we're gonna new is your blood save. This is Illustrator. So that isn't illustrated. Say so. You have that original file. So now we're gonna do a select all Make sure we live text. There's we need to make sure we go to create outlines. We're going type, create outlines that's gonna make everything outlined and no longer make text edible. Then you're gonna do go ahead, unlocked this layer and delete the T shirt. We no longer need that. We're gonna be uploaded this on our on line printer, so we're not doing a local partner, so they don't really need to know the placement cause we're gonna be uploading it and place it in on the teacher themselves. So let's friends with documents, set up, file documents set up. Let's edit art boards and let's see what size we have. We have 500 pixels by 500 fixes. Let's make that a little bigger. Let's make it 2000. You can never have it big enough. Sometimes you could be inches If you know kind of the inch inches of the T shirt in terms of width and height, you could do this well, but what I'm doing is I write flicked and I grouped together and holding down shipped so that it doesn't get distorted. Like if I didn't hold down shift, this will get distorted. So holding down shift and dragging my mouse, we'll bring it to the edge. We're gonna get a file documents set up and our boards. It's gonna give us a chance to to create. Move this to any art board size. Let's go ahead and make it pretty matched up here. You don't have a lot of excess hardboard. There's your design. It's ready to be done. Will select all it has been outlined. The double checked on its insane. Why I came. So it's good. Like all it looks, Good color mood seemed like a great um, says good file. What we're gonna do is when we uploaded online. Sometimes there's color for violations. It's a lot of times I will export it. As a PNG, it will have a transparent background so good P and G save to the desktop, and when it does PP, I always do and say them out 300 standard. But since we're is due up front project, I go and make it something high like 1200. It's probably pretty good. In this case, it's a 4006 or five inch by five inch. Okay, so click OK. It's announced that export always takes a while to do P and G's this size. Um, so it's good being processing that. And so there's a lot of different websites you can use to sell your T shirts online. One that I found today, first time trying it is, so I'm not quite sure I don't have a full of you on it. I'm gonna give tribes called spread shirt stretcher dot com And here's my profile. Just signed up for an account, maybe five Peter 15 minutes ago. Okay, you're having issues. It's going to open a violin that happens all the time. That's why you say, say, say how many products I've lost because illustrator got hung up. No problem. We'll go ahead and double click illustrator file. I like to leave these accidents in my videos for this real life. This happens all the time. Okay, so here we go. Let's go ahead and do this real quick. And this is good because it shows you have to do this all over 2000. That's actually do interests. Interest. Five inches by five inches. That's probably the standard size. It be on a T shirt. Post it, drag it this quickly. File documents set up at it. Make sure you see our court size, our requirement. But it's nice when the export is a day. But we're going Teoh, a beauty. Have a transfer background on this case at Sport Haus. We're gonna put use art boards so that it does not want anything outside of heart boards. Take that test. What for? Let's actually do lower resolution that I got hung up on 1200. Let's do 600. It's still fairly high. 300 standard print profits, if you know the exact size. Okay, so that worked. It's been a desktop. We have our files on transparent background. It's a show on Gray Finder. So great I love it. So let's go ahead and upload it. We'll do that in the next video 3. Get your T-Shirt ready to sell!: Okay, so we have our design right here. We exported our PNG file to the desktop. Here's our T shirt designs. What we're gonna upload to a T shirt on online seller and start making some money, but fully since go ahead and close this out for some, most online resellers are gonna have their good except illustrator formats and also GPS format. So if you go in, illustrator, you always do is save ass. And both of these formats are accepted as well, almost all the time. But I'm doing a PNG. Uh, it's a little bit easier to see the preview, so school hadn't opened up. Um, this is something I'm trying out for the first time. Will spread shirt you guys made a new of other online is up apparel of sellers that you can upload your design and create mugs and T shirts. And this is just one I found, um, not really promoting it per se. There's you do any of them? Um so let's go ahead. Already uploaded my design. I just signed up for account maybe five minutes ago. We go and click on my deadline, and I would like to do Let's see, I definitely want to do a mail shirt and a woman shirt, but I don't want to do jackets and tank those air. Don't Sella's Well, Regular T shirts always sell the best. It seems a little more approachable, and you can wear T shirt all year round. Okay, so let's go ahead and click on this men shirt. It's gonna already upload my design and most of all, the ones that I've used so far companies to do this. They all have a very similar set up. So you'll probably if you use another program or another company. It'll be very similar. So here's our design. Let's go ahead and expand that, and it's gonna tell me when the design has spends too large. So throw up all sorts of warnings. I wanted to be kind of large, not not too small, not too big, kind of like they're perfect, perfectly aligned. That color is not gonna work. We have a lot of colors, so let's see how great what looks that shows up fairly well. Well, let's see. Right is a little too stark. Not many people were just plain white T shirts anymore. Definitely probably stick with Gray might be the winner. No one was Brown warrantless selling a specific targeted shirt. Well, let's go with gray. Very good. So it obviously designed things and put them on sleeves as well. Um, that would be cool to coordinate that you could just up with design and do that. So I like that I'm done way, uploaded ourselves almost to the women shirt. Do the same thing. And she's a different color for the women's. I don't know. You have expand this out to help fast. This is I'm already creating a T shirt. Okay. Product color C. Who is a tough one? E. I might stick with Reagan. Done. I want to do that the next. So I did. It. Spans down stick with two regular T shirts. Male, female. I'm done. Of course you got to go on. And you name it. You describe your design on tags, which we're probably gonna be, um, the best way for people to search for you. So for this case, this is targeted to graphic designers. So take a graphic sign. Design graphic designer color. I mean, they could just be very creative on what tags use. It's pretty essential for your T shirt for sale. Well, I'm gonna click next. It's gonna go over a few more things about payment and how much you should charge for your shirt. That's up to you. I've got me this far. So look how quickly we just designed a T shirt and got it ready to go. This is if you want to sell it on the on line winner. If you want to stop, use a local printer and they just want file. It's very easy. We already got it repaired. They like to have it in GPS format, so you're just gonna go to file save as and you know they can take it straight to. That's totally buying, but I've noticed they tended like UPS format. It's a little bit more widely used, so you just exported as a UPS, and you can send that file along with that screenshot of where you want it to be placed. And if you want to do digital or are silkscreen or whatever. Oh, wait, you want to print the shirt and of course, they're gonna want to pick a color, and you might want to go down the storm physically see the color to pick it out, see what works. And that is It just created T shirt and we have a store going and probably less than an hour.