So You Want to Start a T-Shirt Company?

We get at least a half-dozen calls, emails, or half-hearted contact form requests from people who “want to start a t-shirt company”.  Usually the conversation goes something like this:

So I’ve got this idea and I wanna print up some shirts and maybe, I dunno, some matching sweatshirts or somethin’.  I already know madddd people that said they would buy them so I figure everything will be straight after the first order.  So, like, what’s it going to cost for, say, 100 shirts with a design on the front, something on the back, and maybe something on the sleeve?  Can I hit you up with the money once everyone pays for these shirts, then we’ll be cool from there?”

Let’s start with the basics:

  1. If you call that a sales pitch then we ought to slap you around like Dikembe Mutombo did people in the late 90’s.
  2. Having friends who want custom shirts is different then starting a t-shirt company.
  3. You don’t have a plan (important).  You don’t have artwork or a complete concept (more important).  You don’t have money (MOST important)!
  4. Your t-shirt company = epic FAIL!

Follow the example of companies like LA vs The World or Pan the Man Ventures.  Both companies approached us with plans to start an apparel line.  They came equipped with a design concept, business plan, budget, and an understanding of the printing process.

LA vs The World

LA vs The World

Pan the Man Ventures

Pan the Man - LiveSuperlative

Most Important Tips:

Have a Plan

Be Organized

Have a Budget

Understand Art Requirements

Have Artwork Ready

LA vs The World and Pan the Man Ventures both had their act together.  It’s no wonder that both companies recently launched their respective apparel lines and sales are open to the public.  Don’t call us dream-crushers.  We want to see you succeed more than anybody!  Just let us help by preparing you ahead of time.  Follow our quick tips mentioned above and you could have your own clothing line off the ground in no time!  Meanwhile, check out what others are doing and maybe you can learn a thing or 2!

The Boyfriend Tee

Women's Signature Boyfriend Tee

Live Superlative

Live Superlative




About Downtown Printwear

Downtown Custom Printwear specializes in screen-printing, embroidery, large format printing, vinyl graphics, and graphic design. All work is completed in-house, allowing for the most competitive pricing the industry can offer. You’ll always have the opportunity to speak with one of our staff experts who will help you with your order — something you can’t get with those web-based companies. View all posts by Downtown Printwear

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