Last updated on October 9th, 2019
Designing your own t-shirt seems like a Herculean task. Earlier, it was considered old-fashioned software with sub-standard results. But it’s no longer the case now! Nowadays, there are a plethora of t shirt design software options; both for experienced and beginners alike. The selection ranges from powerful local applications to online design tools.
This huge range of t-shirt design software options makes creating shirts easier. On top of it, they guarantee a great result in the end. Some software solutions even come with printing options, while others are entirely focused on rendering a perfect design. If you want to design your own shirt, you have come to the right place. From high-end design tools focused on professionals to free t shirt design software aimed at amateurs and online services, our list of the best t-shirt design software is a must-read. Here is the list of 15 best t shirt design software to try in 2020:
01. Designhill T-Shirt Maker
Designhill t-shirt maker is an excellent application if you need help for creating a custom t shirt. It is a one-stop solution with its in-built tool that simplifies the whole process. Its shirt maker is easy to use. You can see the design taking the desired look as you add text or other elements. Change the color, placement, or font. Add logos, images, and drag or drop elements to see its effect in real-time. If you are someone who isn’t a pro in t-shirt designing, Designhill t-shirt maker is the best way to go.
02. Printful — Ideal For Free Mock-ups
Printful’s t shirt design software allows you to create high-resolution mock-ups. It doesn’t charge you for downloading the design though. You can use it for almost all kinds of clothing, accessories, and more. After picking your t-shirt style(s) and color(s), you can upload your own artwork or create from scratch using the software’s basic font and clipart options.
Somewhat the software limits you to the front and back design of the long sleeve, regular, or 3/4th sleeve t-shirts only. You can also add text to both the sleeves with an outside label. Once you have the exact design you’ve been looking for, send it for printing or download the files.
03. Adobe Illustrator — For Professionals
We would not suggest you playing with Adobe’s high-end graphic solutions to create your occasional t-shirts. But if you’re already a professional, Illustrator is an excellent tool for designing high-quality shirts. As the focus of the software is on vector images, you can easily scale up or down the size of a text or logo without compromising on the quality.
Your design will look great on a t-shirt as it will look on a business card, billboard, or any other material. If you think of screen-printing your design, illustrator simplifies the process of creating layered, spot-colored files that your print shop needs. Just like other professional software, illustrator provides a steep learning curve. Adobe offers published tutorials with sample files to get its users started. Dozens of sites also offer templates that you can import directly into the software.
04. GraffixPro Studio
In our list of best t shirt design software, GraffixPro Studio is the next. As compared to other t-shirt design software solutions, it offers a little more. It’s a paid version, and you need to contact its team for a demo. This software has many advantages for people who run t-shirt printing businesses. Also, it has been designed for those who want to make t-shirt printing a source of living.
There are over 45 fonts, more than 350 images, and numerous t-shirt templates. This software is easy-to-use! Even beginners will be able to try their hands on it easily. It has features to create a distressed look, add shadows as well as play with the artwork. Use either your own artwork or use the library for readymade designs. Besides, the t-shirt design software has other features like barcoding, quote generator, and inventory management.
05. InkScape — Best & Free To Use
Are you unable to afford paid design tools? If not, you must be searching for powerful and flexible free t-shirt design software. Take a look at this free software — InkScape. It’s an open-source vector-based design tool that has the same features as Adobe Illustrator but for zero cost. Although there aren’t any specific t-shirt temples or tutorials available with this software, you can leverage other users’ designs and files that are free to its community.
Once you have learned how to use this software, it becomes easier for you to apply your expertise and design attractive t-shirts. This t-shirt design software is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems. It also allows you to turn an existing bitmap image into vector images with the help of a tracing function. It enables you to scale up and scale down any image in size as required for the design, plus export it in a suitable format for screen-printing. Besides, InkScape also provides raster image formats such as .jpg and .png.
06. GIMP — An Affordable Alternative
It’s a professional substitute for Photoshop. GIMP is an open-source graphics editing software that has been around for years. Professional graphic designers, who are cash-strapped but looking for a viable alternative for excellent design work, this software is a must-try. You need to put in some effort to get familiar with GIMP as you do with other high-end t shirt design software.
It has free tutorials and YouTube to get started. There are also paid courses focused on improving your skills and helping you to create great designs that you can export in a suitable printing format. The software is available for Windows, Linux, and macOS, and boasts a variety of layout and editing options.
07. Placeit — Perfect For Mock-ups
This software helps both newbie and professional designers to create realistic mock-ups for t-shirts. It is one of the best online t shirt design software available today. Working with this application is easy, as there are hundreds of templates to get started. It doesn’t have a library of thousands of clip-art images to leaf through, but a curated selection focused on each segment of the template. Some of you might get uncomfortable with this approach; but in reality, it speeds up the process and leads to a better result. You can also customize backgrounds, colors, and fonts.
Whatever changes you make to your design, it is reflected in the mock-ups in real-time. If you click on modeled images, it yields a larger version of it and provides you with many similar options to choose from. It lets you upload an existing artwork if all you require is a mockup. Later on, you can download any mock-ups and designs for a nominal charge or as a part of its unlimited monthly subscription.
08. Rush Order Tee — Speedy Design Creation
Using Rush Order Tee’s software for custom t-shirt creation is a breeze. It is quick and provides varieties of customization options. The software has a wide range of shirt colors, styles, as well as manufacturers to choose from. It guides you through a series of steps to get the exact design you need.Its huge library of over 50,000 clipart images ensures you get great graphics for your t-shirt design. In case you have something special in mind, the software lets you upload your own design as well. The in-house team of the company reviews each design for quality. They correct mistakes if there’s any and then send it for the final print. Even, there are a live chat and phone support available for further assistance.
09. CorelDraw Graphic Suite
It’s one of the popular software solutions ideal for t shirt design. It comes with a 15-day free trial. After that, you can buy it outright or go for its annual subscription. One of the best things about this t shirt design software is that it creates vector graphics and allows you to work with other formats as well.
Hence, it doesn’t restrict the flexibility quotient. It is easy to design your shirt with this software, but you can also use it for other design projects as well. Its vast library has over 7,000 clip-art images, 1,000 high-resolution images, 150 ready-to-design templates, 1,000 typefaces and 600 fountain, bitmap, and vector files. The full-image editing software lets you add text, graphic, and join different images together. Those who are new to graphic design services, there are tutorials in it for help.
Its pre-designed templates, as well as images, are ideal for designers who need practical materials. It also lets you include some attractive features like shadows, symmetrical designs, mosaic, and more. One new feature that the software got is — Non-Destructive Effects.
This feature lets you experiment with various effects on your picture without changing the source image. Creating the best design using CorelDraw Graphics Suite might take a little while. But once you get familiar with it, there won’t be any limitation to your imagination.
10. Fatpaint — Free To Use
This t shirt design software is ‘free to use’. One of the most significant advantages of this software is that one doesn’t need to download or install it. All you need to do is to log in and start creating your masterpieces. You will require Adobe Flash though, and that’s all. Even if it’s free, it packs some extra features like — more than 900 typefaces, 3D templates, and a huge collection of vector clip arts. This t-shirt design software makes it a breeze to create 3D graphics and images that will make your shirts pop.
Use your own artwork or create a fresh one. It is really very simple to modify your design with other elements and tools. The only drawback this free t shirt design software has is — advertisements. You may get a little annoyed by ads popping up. But if you want to escape the ads changing you, become a Pro subscriber.
11. Design ‘N’ Buy
It’s Web-to-print t shirt design software, which is exceptionally budget-friendly and easy-to-use. Even if you’re someone who doesn’t know how to make your own shirt, this software is right there to help you. It has live training sessions and user manuals by experts for assistance. In short, this t shirt design software is great for beginners. Some of its best features include colors, and borders for clipart images.
It enables you to use multi-line text, spacing adjustments, and many more. The software has a collection of t shirt design templates that you can edit to create personalized t shirts. Furthermore, the software allows you to upload pictures from your device or Flickr, Instagram, and Picasa. Its advanced image editor, as well as an image health monitor, helps you check the print quality as well.
12. InkXE — Use Across All Devices
You can use this web-to-print software across all web-browsers and devices. Its user-friendly interface has many features. Business owners, as well as professional graphic designers, can use this t shirt design software to their advantage. As far as features are concerned, it supports almost all types of printing methods, including heat print, sublimation, DTG print, and more. It allows users to upload pictures from their devices as well as social media sites in any format.
The software checks the resolution of the image on its own. The masks and filters added in the software allow you to modify or remove colors from your design in real-time. Convert the images to grayscale or vectorize them easily. There are more than 10,000 free cliparts besides t shirt design templates and shapes. Use these elements or create your own template, shape, or clipart using their tool. What’s more? The t-shirt design software has background patterns pre-installed in it.
This t shirt design software allows customers to make their own design by choosing from various templates, fonts, colors, and other elements. In simple words, it’s more customer-friendly for those who want to start their own custom t-shirt business. Customily allows easy integration of your Magento, Shopify, and Bogcommerce store.
It’s useful if you plan to market your products through these platforms. Customers can create their t shirt design, after which it generates a file. They can send the file directly to the manufacturer without any hassles. Easy exchange of designs via Web helps in bringing the cost down.
14. Adobe Photoshop
This software is a part of Adobe Suite. But it is not a vector application and has different usage. It allows you to create unique effects and edit high-quality designs and images. Just like Illustrator, you can work on Photoshop.
The only difference is that its images aren’t vectors. It means whatever designs you create, won’t be suitable for screen printing. But it can be suitable for DTG printing.
15. Snaptee – Ideal For Mobile
While most t shirt design software or apps work best for desktop or laptop, Snaptee works wonderfully for mobile. It’s been designed specifically for mobile phones. This software lets you pick from a selection of designs uploaded. Even, you can choose from designs that users have uploaded, and then use them in many ways. After choosing the design you would like to proceed with, the software allows you to pick your style and basic layout for the shirt. From there, you can use its existing graphic elements or upload your own design from different sources.
Its interface takes just a couple of minutes to adapt to, but it is easy and powerful enough, even for simple designs. This application handles all the tweaking with colors, fonts, and other elements. Once you are satisfied with the result, you can send your design to Snaptee for printing your custom long sleeve shirt or whatever you like. The payment process is simple, having options to either through Google Pay or Apple Pay.
Whether you want to create your own t-shirt or start a custom t-shirt design business, there are software solutions out there for help. Get your creative juices flowing, run your imagination wild as these solutions will provide the exact help you need.